Bacha Khan’s death anniversary observed
JALALABAD (Pajhwok): The death anniversary of Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan, renowned for his philosophy of non-violent during the struggle against British rule, was observed at his mausoleum in Nangarhar province on Tuesday.
The event in Jalalabad was attended by a number of Awami National Party (ANA) leaders from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, including his daughter-in-law Begum Nasim Wali Khan, the wife of late Khan Abdul Wali Khan.
Nangarhar Deputy Governor Mohammad Hanif Gardiwal welcomed guests from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. He hailed Abdul Ghaffar Khan, better known as Bacha Khan, as the leader of all Pashtuns and Afghans and a symbol of Pashtuns unity.
He said the freedom fighter had struggled to unite the Pashtuns. “Today without any invitation, a large number of people are here at Bacha Khan’s shrine to attend his death anniversary.”
He said the burial of Bacha Khan in Nangarhar had its own philosophy that Pashtuns could never be separated by artificial borders.
Nasim Wali, who leads a breakaway faction of ANP, recalled Bacha Khan had spent 33 years either in jail or in exile for his service to the Pashtun nation.
She slammed the United Nations for not giving Bacha Khan a peace prize the way the word’s body conferred it on Nelson Mandela, a South African anti-apartheid revolutionary.
When asked about the trenches Pakistani forces are digging along the Durand Line in Balochistan province, Nasim Wali replied the Berlin Wall could not separate Germans and the trenches would not divide the Pashtuns.
ANP central committee member from Balochistan Aurangzeb Kasi said observing the death anniversary of Bacha Khan in Nangarhar was aimed to reassure all Afghans that they would continue his mission.
Born in 1890, Bacha Khan was a Pashtun independence activist and a lifelong spiritual leader known for his nonviolent freedom struggle.
He strongly opposed the partition of the subcontinent when the Indian National Congress accepted the plan. "You have thrown us to the wolves," a perturbed Khan told the Congress.
However, Bacha Khan pledged allegiance to Pakistan after its creation in 1947 and demanded an autonomous Pashtunistan, but he was frequently arrested by the Pakistani government between 1948 and 1954.
Bacha Khan also spent much of the 1960s and 1970s either in jail or in exile. Upon his death in 1988 in Peshawar under house arrest, he was buried at his house in Jalalabad following his will.
Tens of thousands of mourners attended his funeral coming from Peshawar to Jalalabad. Despite the heavy fighting at the time, both sides of the Soviet and Afghan armies and the mujahideen declared a ceasefire to allow his burial.
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