Sardars were slaves of British Raj, now Pokistan

” The powers of the Sardars or feudal lords were limited in the Barrohi tenure of rule, till the British jumped in. These Sardars held a consultative position in the matters of importance and in deciding tribal cases. They were as a sort of Conciliatory commission. Their Duty was that of an Arbitrator of peace between the contending parties. In case they failed, the matter was referred to the Khan-the Supreme Power-who in return forwarded it to the Qazi-ul-Quzzat (chief judge) for the final decision. Such was the position of the Sardars in the Criminal cases, while civil cases were directly dealt by the Qazi. The Khan was the Court of Appeal in all matters concerning the tribes of the conquered areas. The Sardars (tribal chiefs) were given jagirs by the Khan, and consequently they supplied the Khan with men and material in emergencies. Failing to produce specified quota of men, their jagirs were confiscated. Regarding internal affairs, the Khan acted quite independently in making laws and various other changes in the administrative spheres. While in his dealings with external matters, the feudal lords acted as a sort of Advisory Council. It was Naseer Khan, who had appointed tribal chiefs through General Elections of the tribe, by the headmen. Seniority in age and personal distinction were the deciding factors in the nomination of the tribal chief.( page 85,History of Baluch race, by Muhammad Sardar Baluch.1958).

When the British came and started setting up their new class orders, they met with problems in the Nazimate regions/ Sir Robert Sandeman was of the view owing to the democratic setup found amongst the tribes, the Head-men (Tumandars) if unsupported could not enforce Authority over the unruly spirits and in order to preserve what influence they possessed, they were compelled to follow the path where the unruly spirits lead (unruly being those who opposed the British).But the balance of power was turned, when the Tumandars were given the means to entertain armed servants of their own, and when supported by suitable allowances and the prestige of connection with ”OUR’ power. They then can exert themselves successfully, to keep their tribes in order.(p-304,Sir Robert Sandeman by T.H.Thornton.1895).

Though as we see the British created a new class, to quote just two examples Mihrullah Khan Marri and Shahbaz Khan Bugti were made Nawabs in January 1890,by the British Government of India.

But what most miss; the conditions attached with all these titles and grants .

They were all subject to 7 terms which were as under:

1) To be continued to a single ‘Designate’ heir.

2) And Conditionally on the Government pleasure.

3) Heir to be chosen by the Government.

4) Information services to be provided during the term in office.

5) Subject to good behavior while in service to the Government.

6) For service and position.

7) Government services to be rendered on call, with the retainers.

(PRAP(R) feb 1896).


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