Mohammad Bin Qasim , Charles Napier, Hoshu Sheedi and Sindh

“My ruling is given: Kill anyone belonging to the ahl-i-harb (combatants); arrest their sons and daughters for hostages and imprison them. Whoever does not fight against us…grant them aman (safety) and settle their tribute [amwal] as dhimmah (protected person)…”

-Al-Hajjaj in a letter sent to Muhammad bin Qasim

Kazi of Alor in Sindh wrote a book called Chach Nama, which is story of Chach, a King of Sindh. Chach was a high caste Brahmin who ruled over Sindh, he was succeeded by his son Dahir.  Dahir’s kingdom was attacked by 17 years old general called Mohammad Bin Qasim.

qasim

When Mohammad bin Qasim started his campaign he had a small army, but by the time he reached Sindh, many joined him (not many in India were happy with Dahir esp. Buddhists) and soon he was leading a large army. So a 17 years old general was able to conquer whole of Sindh. Many centuries later, i.e on 14th of August 1947, citizens of Pakistan declared Mohammad Bin Qasim as first citizen of Pakistan. Mohammad Bin Qasim would have loved to know that it was he and not Jinnah who created Pakistan.

But Arabs were not interested in Indo Pak relationship dynamics, they were more interested in internal politics, so after conquest of Sindh, Mohammad bin Qasim was called back, arrested and killed.

napier

Also many centuries later, British decided to conquer Sindh. They decided to send army under 60 years old general called Charles James Napier. Task given to Napier was to put down rebellion by chieftains of Sindh. But Napier not only put down rebellion, he on his own decided to conquer Sindh. Thus conquest of Sindh was unauthorised and Napier should have been sacked, but British decided that now that they have already captured Sindh, they would keep it; it was made part of Bombay province.

“If this was a piece of rascality, it was a noble piece of rascality!”

-British on conquest of Sindh

18440518-peccavi_punch1

A 16 years old girl in Britain called Catherine Winkworth captured entire episode by using one word – Peccavi. Peccavi in Latin means “I have sinned” (here sinned= Sindh). While for Winkworth it was a pun, fit to be published in Punch magazine, but for another Sindhi Benazir Bhutto it was confession made by Napier.

battle

In one of the battles, Napier had to fight with a Sindhi General Hosh Muhammad Sheedi or Hoshu. Actually, Hoshu was not Sindhi in sense, he was Siddi, descendants of Africans who settled in India i.e. he came from Africa and not from Harappa or Mohenjo daro. Anyway, Hoshu considered Sindh as his mother land and fought bravely against British and died fighting. Napier was impressed with his bravery.

hoshu

“Marvesoon , Par Sindh na Desoo (“We will die but not give Sindh” )”

-Hosh Muhammad Sheedi

 

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