Editor ChoiceSwat History

THE OLD MAN AND THE PRINCE OF SWAT

During the World War II, Swat State was also affected as the rest of the Sub Continent. Swat was dependent for many items of daily requirements on the industries beyond its borders, such as Kerosene oil, Sugar and cloth. To meet up the needs of the people and ensure supply of every house hold, these items were controlled and were issued on permits, under the signature of Tehsildar or Hakim, whatever the case might be. Overall supervision was the responsibility of the then Crown Prince,  Miangul Jahanzeb.

From day one, Miangul Jahanzeb used to go out in his car, driven by a uniformed staff members of his security. He never set in the back seat because his evening outings were not for relaxation, but to see what is going on in the State, or to stop the car, seeing the needy person and help him. He also took one or more officers from civil and the State forces. These officers used to sit in the back seat of the car. In those days, Abdul Raziq, ‘Kaman Officer’, who lived beyond the residence of Miangul Jahanzeb, was his permanent companion of these evening drives. Having said this, let us hear about an incident in one of these drives, in the words of Abdul Raziq Khan. He told:

“As usual , we were on drive and coming back from Charbagh. We saw a very old man, dressed in shabby and torn cloths going slowly on the road. We passed him and then the Wali Ahd asked the driver to stop and reverse the car and pick the old man. As we reached him, Miangul Jahanzeb asked the old man to get in the care. The old man said he had no fare to pay. He was told that nothing will be charged from him. In short, after much assurance, the old man got in and sat between the two officers. On the way, Jahanzeb asked  the old man where was the going. He replied that he is going to lodge a complaint against the Hakim of Khwaza Khela as he has refused to give him his quota of ration, i.e., sugar , cloth and kerosene oil. Just for fun, the Wali Ahd asked the man that if the Hakim is given in his control, what punishment he would give the Hakim. The old man clutched his walking stick and said with clinched teeth, ‘I will insert this in his…’. We were almost frozen with this outburst of the old man. We drew a sigh of relief when the Wali Ahd laughed at this reply.’

Abdur Raziq further narrated:

“The next morning, when the old man was presented to him, the man could not utter a single word. But the Wali Ahd ordered that the man should be given from the store Saidu, 40 yards of cloth, a canister of kerosene oil and 40 sears of sugar. He also called the Hakim to be very careful in future.”

Fazal Raziq Shahab belongs to the historic village of Aboha, Swat. His writings on Swat State provides very useful information to the general readers and researchers. He remained Swat State functionary and thus observed the happenings of the State very closely. He is the author of two books and his Columns has been a regular feature of Daily Azadi, Bakhabarswat.com and Lafzuna.com.
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Fazal Raziq Shahab belongs to the historic village of Aboha, Swat. His writings on Swat State provides very useful information to the general readers and researchers. He remained Swat State functionary and thus observed the happenings of the State very closely. He is the author of two books and his Columns has been a regular feature of Daily Azadi, Bakhabarswat.com and Lafzuna.com.
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