Problems and Solution of Balochistan Essay

1480 Words 6 Pages

The geographical location of Balochistan as the farthest Western corner of the subcontinent grants it its unique cultural and historical attributes. Though touched by the trails of many great conquerors over the centuries, the rugged terrain has yielded very few archaeological traces of their presence. Yet Balochistan is home to the pre-Indus civilization at Mehrgarh. In 1979 archaeologists found evidence of sedentary settlements deemed to stretch back as far as the Stone Age (70,000 to 7,000 BC) along the west bank of the Bolan River on the plains of Kachhi, roughly 30 km from the town of Sibi.

Balochistan Map
Balochistan map 1905
(Rumsey Map Collection)
Early history

Balochistan is splayed across the border with Iran,
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Arab rule over Balochistan was tenuous at best, with multiple revolts till its demise in the tenth century AD.

The region was subservient to greater regional powers from both the East and West. After the fall of Arab rule, the Ghaznavids had significant control over the area, as subsequently did the Ghorids. Around 1223 AD the invasion of the Mongols by Chenghiz Khan’s son Chaghatai Khan left a lasting mark on Balochistan. Cantonments of Mongol troops were left behind, said to be the ancestors of modern day Hazaras of Balochistan and Afghanistan. In the turmoil of the Mongol invasions, tribes of Baloch migrated to Sindh, where they are settled to this day.

British policy

British Policy
Khan of Kalat and sons
(Fred Bremner)
During the expansion of British power in the subcontinent, the support of Baloch Sardars was garnered by offering them the title of Nawab, and in this way the British managed to maintain colonial power in the Western frontier of their new empire. During the Great Game, the British created buffer zones to protect its colonial interests from the French and the Russians. In 1838, it turned its attention to the rulers of Kalat, who controlled a large area of modern central Balochistan, in order to open a corridor of communication with the Afghans. Till the treaty of 1854, Kalat was treated as a vassal state of the Afghan Kingdom, but defeat in the First Anglo-Afghan War led to increased British support for the state of Kalat,

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