Ahmad of Kalat

Khan Mir Ahmad Yar Khan Ahmedzai GCIE(1902–1979), commonly referred to as "Yar Khan", was the last Khan of Kalat, a princely state within British India and the Dominion of Pakistan, serving from 10 September 1933 to 14 October 1955.[citation needed]

Ahmad Yar Khan Ahmedzai
احمد یار خان احمدزی (Urdu)
احمد يارخان احمدزى(Pashto)
Muhammad Ali Jinnah (left) with Khan (right)
Khan of Kalat
In office
Preceded byMir Mohammad Azam Jan Khan
Succeeded byMir Suleman Dawood Jan (as pretender from 1978)
Governor of Balochistan, Pakistan
In office
1 January 1974 – 5 July 1977
Preceded byAkbar Bugti
Succeeded byKhuda Bakhsh Marri
Personal details
Ahmad Yar Khan Ahmedzai

Khanate of Kalat, British India (present-day Balochistan, Pakistan)
Died1979 (aged 77)
Kalat, Balochistan, Pakistan


In the 1920s, Ahmad Yar served as an agent of the British intelligence service, reporting on Russian influence and the spread of pro-Marxist sympathy among the poorer Baloch subjects.[1]

He assumed the throne of the Khanate of Kalat in 1933 and was decorated by the British in the 1936 New Year Honours as a Knight Grand Commander of the Most Eminent Order of the Indian Empire (GCIE).[2]

With the withdrawal of the British from the Indian subcontinent in August 1947, the Indian Independence Act provided that the princely states which had existed alongside but outside British India were released from all their subsidiary alliances and other treaty obligations to the British, while at the same time the British withdrew from their obligations to defend the states. The rulers were left to decide whether to accede to one of the newly independent states of India or Pakistan or to remain independent outside both.[3] As stated by Sardar Patel at a press conference in January 1948, "As you are all aware, on the lapse of Paramountcy every Indian State became a separate independent entity."[4]

Muhammad Ali Jinnah was Yar Khan's legal adviser in the early 1940s.[5] Jinnah persuaded Yar Khan to agree to accede to Pakistan, but the Khan stalled for time. After a period of negotiations, Khan finally acceded to Pakistan on 27 March 1948.[6][7][8]

Yar Khan’s younger brother, Prince Agha Abdul Karim Baloch, revolted against his decision and took refuge in Afghanistan to wage an armed resistance against Pakistan, with little support from the rest of Balochistan. He finally surrendered to Pakistan in 1950.[9] Jinnah and his successors allowed Yar Khan to retain his title until the province's dissolution in 1955.

On 3 October 1952, as one of the princely states of Pakistan, Kalat entered into the Baluchistan States Union with three neighbouring states, Kharan, Las Bela, and Makran, with Yar Khan at the head of the Union with the title of Khan-e-Azam. The Khanate came to an end on 14 October 1955, when it was incorporated into West Pakistan.[10]

Yar Khan briefly declared himself Khan again in defiance of the Pakistani state from June to October 1958.[11] On 6 October 1958, the Pakistani government arrested and imprisoned Yar Khan on sedition charges during the 1958 Pakistani coup d'état against President Iskander Mirza but later released him and briefly restored his title in 1962.[12][13] His arrest triggered an insurgent uprising led by Nauroz Khan in 1959.[14]


Ahmad (left) pictured next to his ADC Captain Shafaat Ullah Shah (middle) and Prime Minister of Pakistan Zulfikar Ali Bhutto (right)

Yar Khan's eldest son, Mir Suleman Dawood Jan, assumed the title of Khan of Kalat upon his father's death in 1979. On Dawood Jan's death his son Suleman Daud Jan became new Khan of Kalat. He has lived in exile in London since the death of Akbar Bugti in 2006. Chief Minister Abdul Malik Baloch and Sanaullah Zehri have asked him to return to Pakistan. Yar Khan's younger sons, Prince Mohyuddin Baloch and grandson Umer Daud Khan, are both politicians in Pakistan.[15]


  • Mir Ahmad Yar Khan Baluch, Inside Baluchistan: A Political Autobiography of Khan-e-Azam Mir Ahmad Yar Khan Baluch, Ex-ruler of Kalat State (Royal Book Company: 1975) ASIN B0000E81K7

Further readingEdit

  • Axmann, Martin (2008). Back to the Future: The Khanate of Kalat and the Genesis of Baloch Nationalism, 1915-1955. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780195476453.
  • Baloch, Inayatullah (1987). The Problem of "Greater Baluchistan": A Study of Baluch Nationalism. Steiner Verlag Wiesbaden. ISBN 9783515049993.


  1. ^ Amin Saikal (2004). Modern Afghanistan: A History of Struggle and Survival. I.B.Tauris. p. 267.
  2. ^ "No. 34238". The London Gazette (Supplement). 31 December 1935. p. 6.
  3. ^ Ishtiaq Ahmed, State, Nation and Ethnicity in Contemporary South Asia (London & New York, 1998), p. 99
  4. ^ R. P. Bhargava, The Chamber of Princes (Northern Book Centre, 1991) p. 313
  5. ^ Farhan Hanif Siddiqi (2012). The Politics of Ethnicity in Pakistan: The Baloch, Sindhi and Mohajir Ethnic Movements. Routledge. pp. 56–58.
  6. ^ Yaqoob Khan Bangash (10 May 2015). "The princely India". Archived from the original on 25 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015. It was only after a protracted period of negotiations and certain tactics used by the Pakistani bureaucracy, and strange help of All India Radio, that Kalat finally acceded to Pakistan on March 27, 1948.
  7. ^ "In memory of Khan of Kalat". Nation. Retrieved 21 October 2014. The Khan announced his affiliation with Pakistan in 1948.
  8. ^ "Balochistan conundrum: Khan of Kalat's return is a distant possibility". Express Tribune. Retrieved 26 May 2013. Khan-e-Kalat Mir Ahmed Yar Khan's decision of ceding the princely state of Kalat to Pakistan at the request of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah in 1948.
  9. ^ Qaiser Butt (22 April 2013). "Balochistan Princely Liaisons: The Khan family controls politics in Kalat". The Express Tribune. Prince Agha Abdul Karim Baloch, father of Irfan Karim and younger brother of Khan-e-Kalat Mir Ahmed Yar Khan, had revolted against his brother's decision of accession of Kalat State to Pakistan at the request of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah in 1948. Abdul Karim took refuge in Afghanistan to wage an armed resistance against Pakistan. However, he ultimately surrendered to Pakistan in 1950
  10. ^ Farhan Hanif Siddiqi, The Politics of Ethnicity in Pakistan: The Baloch, Sindhi and Mohajir Ethnic Movements (Routledge, 2012), pp. 58–62
  11. ^ "Deposed Khan of Kalat restored". Dawn. 7 November 2012.
  12. ^ Raṇabīra Samāddāra (2007). The Materiality of Politics: Volume 1: The Technologies of Rule, Volume 1. Anthem Press. p. 38.
  13. ^ James B. Minahan (2002). Encyclopedia of the Stateless Nations: Ethnic and National Groups Around the World A-Z [4 Volumes]. ABC-CLIO. p. 258.
  14. ^ Farhan Hanif Siddiqi (2012). The Politics of Ethnicity in Pakistan: The Baloch, Sindhi and Mohajir Ethnic Movements. Routledge. p. 71.
  15. ^ "Khan of Kalat being persuaded to return home". Dawn. 29 June 2015.

External linksEdit