A note on Dotani tribe

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A note on Dotani tribe,
Published in Khyber.ORG on Friday, April 10 2015 (http://www.khyber.org)


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A note on Dotani tribe

Publishing Date: Friday, April 10 2015

A tribe of Powindahs, divide into the following sections.

1. Madu Khel

2. Ibrahim

3. Badin Khel

4. Sado Khel

5. Hasan Khel

6. Bana Khel

7. Usmanzai

8. Sanki zai

9. Nuso Khel


This is one of the richest Powindah tribes ; they chiefly  bring silk "pashm," carpets , and "charas." They are sometimes spoken as of Lohani.

The  Dotanis are said to be able to  muster some 2,500  fighting men, but of this number at least 1,000 are either permanently, or semi permanently,settled within the British border , and of the remainder nearly all pass through the Gomal twice a year with kafilas to and from Afghanistan

It is to be noted that for peace or war the Dotani and Sulaiman Khel are one. Several hundreds of Sulaiman Khel have been killed fighting the battles of the Dotanis against the Ahmadzai Wazirs over the Wana lands amongst them the father of Muhammad Akram, one of the leading Sulaiman Khel maliks of these parts . As late as October 1894 the allied army of the Powindahs including 1,800 Dotanis and 19,000 Sulaiman Khel, collected at Warshak with the intention of ravaging Wana and then attacking the Mahsuds.

To understand the relations between two parties that gave rise to this projected torah, it will be necessary to go back a little in the history of the tribes chiefly concerned. In bygone times the Wana valley was in possession of the Dotanis. About 1840 the Ahmadzais, who were a nomad tribe moved from their settlements in Margha and Birmal to Wana and obtained a footing in the valley, partly by force and partly by occupying land in the capacity of mortgages. In the  course of time almost the whole valley had come into their hands. Some 30 years later the Dotanis, with the aid of the Sulaiman Khel, who themselves claimed grazing rights in Wano, made a desperate  attempt to recover possession of the valley. A fierce  fight ensued, in which the invaders were worsted and lost heavily. The scene of the fights , old Dotani Kot has been a ruin ever since. After this there was a chronic dispute between the Ahmadzais on the one hand and the Dotanis and Sulaiman Khel on the other, about the possession of landed and grazing rights in Wana. In the autumn of 1893 a dispute arose between the Ahmadzais and Dotanis respecting the  right  to a certain "karez" known as Mir Khan. In the fightt which ensued t h e Ahmadzais killed a number of Dotanis and demolished their  fortified village (new Dotani Kot).

 In consequence of this the Dotanis and Sulaiman Khel determined to make a joint attack on the Ahmadzais of Wana on their way back to Khorasan. on receiving information of this the Civil authorities in Dera Ismail Khan, summoned a jirga of Sulaiman Khel, Dotani and Ahmadzai Maliks, with a view to preventing reprisals and bringing about if possible an amicable arrangement between hostile tribes.  The Ahmadzais ultimately agreed to pay blood money or compensation for the Dotanis they had killed and to rebuild the village they had demolished. On receiving a satisfactory assurance of this the Dotanis and Sulaiman Khel promised to refrain from further hostilities . In the summer of 1894, however, the Dotanis were again attacked by the Ahmadzais at Tatai on the Wano Toi, where they had halted on their return to their summer quarters . In this raid the Dotanis lost seven men killed and had 120 cows looted  as well . The Dotanis thereupon determined to exact revenge for  this unprovoked attack, and accordingly approached their  allies , the Sulaiman Khel, with a view to  theirr taking joint action against  the Wanowals during the ensuing cold weather.

The Sulaiman Khel not only agreed to support them, but determined to get up a coalition o f all the Powindah tribes for the purpose. The torah collected in October, as stated above, but the British Commissioner with the Afghan-Wazir boundary delimitation party warned the army against committing hostilities in Wano, which was then under our protection and was shortly  to  be occupied by our troops.

Excerpts from ' Historical and Political Gazetteer of Afghanistan', Volume 6, p-163


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A note on Dotani tribe,
Published in Khyber.ORG on Friday, April 10 2015 (http://www.khyber.org)