Abdul Samad Khan Achakzai

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Abdul Samad was born in July 1907. His father Noor Muhammad was an eminent scholar, who made him proficient in Persian and Arabic while he was only seven years old. He studied Fiqh, Hadith and Tafseer and had full command over Pashtu, Persian, Urdu, Baluchi, Sindhi, Arabic, Brahvi and English. Abdul Samad has written several books and pamphlets such as Pushtu zhaba au Likdoon, Zama Zhond, Samad-ul-Lughat and Pashtu Zaban aur Rasm-ul-khat. In addition to these he also translated the work of Imam Ghazali, Sheikh Saadi, Abul Kalam Azad and Maulana Shibli Nomani, which are as follows Azadi ka Ufaq, Gulistan-i-Saadi, Tarjuman-ul-Quran, Sirat-un-Nabi and Chema-i-Sadaat.

Achakzai came into politics at the age of 15, when he led the procession of school boys of Gulistan in support of the Khilafat Movement. When Amanullah became the Aneer of Afghanistan in 1919 he declared war against the British for the freedom of Afghanistan. Samad participated in the war but the British government caught him and he remained in their custody for 29 years. Soon after he launches his political struggle from a mosque and in 1932, while presiding the All-India Baloch Conference held in Jacobabad he suggested an urgent need of the party in other provinces of the subcontinent. In the same year he attended the conference of All-India Baloch and Balochistan in Hyderabad and a meeting in Karachi also. When he returned to Quetta he was arresyed for making anti-government speeches in Hyderabad and Karachi and remained in jail for three years. In 1938 he started a weekly newspaper ‘Istaqlal’ to inform the Pakhtoons and the masses of Balochistan about his ideas and struggle. Despite of all the difficulties and problems Achakzai continued his political struggle and founded the political party ‘Anjuman-i-Watan’ in 1939. The main objectives were to get rid of the British imperialism, to demand constitutional reforms in Balochistan, political autonomy for Balochistan, abolition of Jirga and Sardari system, reduction of government taxes and complete rejection of the British government Act of 1935.

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