Abdul Ghaffar Khan: Freedom Fighter, Gandhian, Pacifist, Muslim and Pakhtun

January is an important month for Indians. Apart from the English new year, 26 January marks the day when the Constitution was adopted, and 30 January marks the death anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, who was shot dead by Nathuram Godse, a Hindutva fanatic. Very few remember that 20 January marks the death anniversary of another Gandhian giant whose politics rose above communalism and was singularly focussed against British imperialism’s purloining of India. He was Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan, a.k.a. Bacha Khan and the Frontier Gandhi. He was named Badshah Khan at twenty-six by the members of his tribe when his father died.

Khan was born on 6 February 1890, two and a half months after Jawaharlal Nehru, in the village of Utmanzai, what is now a small town near Peshawar in today’s Pakistan, then British India. His father was Behram Khan, the leader of the Muhammadzai tribe who owned prosperous agricultural lands and took pride in speaking the purest accent of Pashto, allowing the tribe to remember traditions bequeathed upon them by their rich history.

Badshah Khan, too represented the best among the Pathans. As a young boy, he left his high school final exams, aspiring to join ‘The Guides’, a corps composed of Sikhs and

— source newsclick.in | Shubham Sharma | 20 Jan 2022

Nullius in verba


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