In public domain there is a discussion on Dewan Nand Ram Tikoo the Prime Minister of Afghanistan. And I can’t help but remember my childhood.
I was raised by my grandparents, as per the Kashmiri tradition. My grandfather told me about our ancestor, Kail Padshah; who was the Prime Minister of Kashmir and was killed by the Afghans.
I looked for this link on Google, Books etc; but reached a dead end.
I thought Kail Padshah must have been from the clan of his mother or his grandmothers; since one Kailash Dhar did show-up. But it didn’t connect the other missing dots.
I was alone at home, during the Covid lockdown ; and started having long phone conversations on Kashmir, with a knowledgeable man – Jenab Zarif Ahmed Zarif; who needs no introduction. During one such interaction, I brought-up, the Kail Padshah.
Zareef Saab after a month or so, got back to me; with the pages of the Barasti Shai; a book in Farsi.
The Kail Padshah, I was looking for was Pandit Hardas Tikoo S/O Pandit Vishnath Tikoo, who was Sahibkar of Kashmir. He was martyred in 1814, at the age of 34, by the Afghan Governor Rahmat-ul-Khan. His dead body, was fished out of Veth aka River Jehlum.
My take is that a decomposed body, fished out of the river, must have been too gory, for the family to forget; this tragic event, was passed from generation to generation. And since Hardas’s tenure was brief and a promising career cut short; public memory had little recollection. Anyway, Kashmir history is full of political dust; Kail Padshah was lost in this dust.
His brother was Dewan Nand Ram Tikoo, the Prime Minister of Afghanistan; Birth: circa 1775 Death: circa 1850; during the reign of Zaman Shah. There is enough written about him in public domain. A distinguished career.
Kashmir was ruled from Kabul twice, in the A.D. period; Kanishak’s and Zaman Shah’s rule.
The Tikoo’s living in Habbakadal area, opposite to Sumyar Temple, across the river, are from this clan; similarly Tikoo’s from Lahore and Lucknow are from this clan.
From 15th Century, it was the knowledge of Farsi, administrative acumen and ready to relocate; that made Kashmiri Pandits rise in bureaucracy, in the region’s kingdoms. This also got us the title of Pandit.
The above lines are written, while remembering my revered Grandfather, Bobaji. -Reapan Tikoo