Janjua Rajput

Janjua Rajput

The Janjua Rajput (Urdu: جنجوعہ, Punjabi ਜਨ੍ਜੁਅ) (also spelt "Janjuha, Janjuah") is a highly dominant and renowned royal warrior clan of Northern India and Pakistan. They are known as the most "Valiant Kshatriyas (Warriors)" of Punjab. ["History of Mediaeval Hindu India" by Chintaman Vinayak Vaidya, Cosmo Publ. 1979, p129] Their warlike nature and dominant rule of their kingdoms against other tribes earned them a powerful reputation in Western Punjab and the Valley of Kashmir. ["Culture and Political History of Kashmir" by Prithivi Nath Kaul Bamzai, MD Publ. Ltd., 1994, p637, p669, p670]

The Mughal Emperor Jalaludin Mohammed Akbar's record keeper "Abu Fazl" celebrated the Janjua Rajputs as among the most renowned Rajputs of India [ "Ain e Akbari" by Abu Fazl (Vol i, Delhi 2006, p354, and Vol iii, p131 ] . Infact, the Muslim Janjua Rajputs were later referred to by researcher Christopher Birdwood as "perhaps the hardest breed in the Continent.." ["A Continent Experiments" by Christopher Bromhead Birdwood, Published by Skeffington, 1945, p118]

They have a recorded history that spans centuries through famous Maharajas, Rajas, Emperors, Sultans, Nawabs and Princes since the Vedic age to the modern era. They were among the earliest Rājput converts to Islam.

Rebelling against the Delhi Sultanate in the early 13th and 16th century, the "Janjua princes" aided Emperor Babur in his conquest of India. They served as Generals in the Imperial Mughal Army and have played a major part in Punjabi history through the battles, rebellions and alliances with World conquerors.

Under the "British Raj of India", they were designated as a "Martial Race" ["Recruiting, Drafting, and Enlisting (Military and Society, 1)"Peter Karsten, 1998, USA, p119] and provided strong numbers to the British Indian Army and fought in both World Wars.

The Janjua Rajput tribe possesses a strong "Martial Reputation", and has produced many highly decorated and award winning Military Generals and Officers to the Pakistan Army. They are also distinguished as providing Pakistan's Permanent Representative to the United Nations in the form of "Ms Tehmina Janjua", as well as Governors to the Provinces of Pakistan and Ambassadors to the Middle East, Egypt and Nepal.

Famous Indian Freedom fighter and Patriotic National Hero Raja Shah Nawaz Khan who was one of the famous three, who were court martialled at the Red Fort Trial, was a staunch "Janjua Rajput" of Rawalpindi, ["A Hundred Horizons", Sugata Bose, 2006 USA, p136] as well as being the maternal godfather of Bollywood Mega star Shahrukh Khan. [ [http://www.telegraphindia.com/1040531/asp/frontpage/story_3313328.asp The Telegraph - Calcutta : Frontpage ] ]

Internationally renowned and popular sportsmen such as Olympic medal winning International Boxing sensation Amir Khan and International Cricketer Sajid Mahmood, are indicative of the Janjua's step in the world of sport.


The Janjua Rajput tribe are a branch of the ancient Pandava dynasty through the Valiant warrior hero Prince Arjun Pandav, who is the ancestor of the "Janjua".

Prince Arjun, known as the "Achilles of India", ["'Arjuna in the Mahabhrata" by Ruth Cecily Katz, University of South Carolina, 1989, back matter] was famous for his valour, superior military skill and inspiring heroism. He was known as the perfect Kshatriya (Warrior), and was known as the "Supreme Archer." He was a renowned conqueror of many powerful kingdoms and was the most fearsome warrior on the battle field of Kurukshetra.

Arjun was well built, extremely handsome and a diligent beloved student of his Martial Art master Drona. Arjun was not only a martial arts hero, but also a romantic hero of the Mahabharata epic ["Rethinking India's Oral and Classical Epics" by Alf Hiltebeitel, 1999 Chicago, p16] which records his romantic adventures as well as his martial campaigns.

The Pandavas were a Chandravanshi Kuru branch of the ancient Vedic Aryans of India. General Alexander Cunningham of India concluded the Janjua to be of Aryan origin. ["Panjab Castes", Sir Denzil Ibbetson, Delhi 2002, p99]

Prince Arjun was himself first cousin to the famed prince Krishna and married Krishna's sister, Subhadra, to extend his dynasty. In fact, it was Prince Arjun who carried out Krishna's funeral rites.

Prince Arjun's great grandson, Maharaja Janamejaya, is the apical ancestor of the Janjuas. Janamejaya was later the ruling Emperor of the Kingdom of Hastinapur, the capital of which was "Indraprasta" (modern day Delhi). Regarding the Janjuas descent from the Pandavas dynasty, the "Bali" and "Bhimwal" generals of "Raja Dhrupet Dev of Mathura", recorded that the "Janjua Raja Dhrupet Dev" was the descendant of Emperor Janamejaya of the Pandava dynasty of Prince Arjun. This reference was recorded in 1195AD. [ [] Mohyal source]

Sir Lepel H Griffin K.C.S.I. had also recorded in the early 1900s that the Janjua were "Pandavas" in origin. ["Punjab Chiefs", L.H.Griffin, 1909 Lahore, p213]

India's other name Bharat or "Bharat-Varsh" is actually named after a forefather of the "Pandava dynasty", Bharat. Bharat-Varsh means "Kingdom of Bharat" [ [http://www.srimadbhagavatam.org/images/familytree-ext2.jpgFamily Tree] ] The Mahabharata epic is a narration which records a war between Bharat's later descendants the Pandavas and their cousins the Kauravas for the throne of Hastinapur. This epic is also believed to be the world's longest poem and Emperor Janamejaya was responsible for the retelling of it.

It has been recorded that the Pandava princes ruled the region of Punjab and specifically Jhelum ["Studies in the Geography of Ancient and Medieval India: 2nd Edition" by D.C. Sircar, D. C. Sirgar (1990, Motilal Banarsidass Publ., p101)] ["Lectures on the Ancient History of India from 650 - 325 B. C." by D. R. Bhandarkar, Asian Educational Services, 1994, p10] during the era of Alexander the Great. The Janjua Rajputs being Pandava in descent ["Punjab Chiefs", L.H.Griffin, 1909 Lahore, p213] interestingly also claim that an ancestor, "Rai Por" is the Porus who fought Alexander in Punjab in 326BC. [ The Jhelum Gazetteer, Sang-e-Meel, 2004, p96] However, there is no known source to confirm Porus's definitive ancestry.

It is said:

According to Arian, Alexander is said to have asked King Porus "How would you like me to treat you?" to which Porus famously replied "As a Raja (king)". The answer touched Alexander, who in return allowed the Raja to retain his Kingdom and more. ["The Horse in the Ancient World" Ann Hyland, 2002 Sutton Publ.,p159] ["Empire of Ashes" Nicholas Nicastro, Signet 2005, p257,258, 260, 263] ["Alexander the Great" Nick McCarty, Carlton Books, 2004, p111] ["To the Frontier" Geoffrey Moorhouse, Phoenix Press, 1998, p190] ["Hannibal's War" John Peddie, Sutton Publ. 2005, p261]

The page List of Indian monarchs gives an account of the period of rule of the "Bharata-Puru-Pandava-Janjua Shahi" phase which began from approx 1600BC to 1026AD.

The Janjua Emperors of the Hindu Shahi Dynasty

From about 964CE, the Janjua chief " Parambhattaraka Maharajadhiraja Paramesvara Sri Jayapaladeva " (Epithets known from the Bari Kot inscriptions) succeeded the Brahmin Hindu Shahi Emperor Bhimdev. The Janjua Shahiya emperors now ruled from Ghandar (Kandahar of Afghanistan) to the whole of Punjab in what was known as the second phase of the Hindu Shahiya, the Janjua Shahi Dynasty.

Famed ethnologists and Indo researchers Sir Alexander Cunningham, ["Coins of Medieval India" Reprint. Varanasi:1967 p56,p62] Elliot and Dowson ["The History of India" Indian repr.1962.vol.i, p.22,425-26] and Sachau ["Alberuni's India" London 1914, vol.ii, p393-94] led research into the origins of the "Pala" Hindu Shahiya, the second dynasty that succeeded the initial Brahmin "Dev" Shahiyas. Through independent research they concluded that the origins of Emperor Jayapala Shah was in fact in the Janjua Rajput. In 1973's "Al-Biruni International Congress in Pakistan", Dr Hussain Khan presented a paper in called "An Interpretation of Al-Biruni's Account of the Hindu Shahiyas of Kabul" which also confirmed the same findings. Finally, the Janjuas own genealogy records the names of the "Janjua Shahi Jayapala" as well as the continued descendants of his House. ["Gazetteer of the Jhelum District", Lahore 1904, p93]

Jayapala was challenged by the armies of Sabuktigin and his son Sultan Mahmud towards the end of his reign as emperor. According to the "Minháj ad-Dīn" in his chronicle "Tabaqát-i Násiri", ["Tabaqát-i Násiri", H. G. Raverty's trans., Vol.1, p.82] writes a testament to the political and powerful stature of Emperor Jayapala Shah, "Jayapála, who is the greatest of all the ráis (kings) of Hind..." Upon being captured after a fierce battle with Sultan Mahmud, Jayapala was ransomed and upon his release, "he ordered the construction of a funeral pyre. Mounting and setting it alight, he nobly perished in the flames". ["The Last 2 Dynasties of the Sáhis" Prof. Abdur Rehman, Delhi Renaissance publishing house. p147] Misra wrote:"Jaypala was perhaps the last Indian ruler to show such spirit of aggression, so sadly lacking in later Rajput kings". [R.G.Misra, "Indian Resistance to Early Muslim Invaders Up to 1206 AD", Anu Books, repr.1992]

Anandpal Shah

His son prince Anandapala who ascended the throne (in about March/April 1002CE) already proved an able warrior and General in leading many battles prior to his ascension.

According to "Adáb al-Harb" ["Adáb al-Harb"p.307-10] in about 990, "the arrogant but ambitious Raja of Lahore Bharat, having put his father in confinement, marched on the country of Jayapála with the intention of conquering the districts of Nandana, Jailum and Tákeshar." Jayapala instructed prince Anandapala to repel the opportunist "Raja Bharat". Anandapala defeated Bharat and took him prisoner in the battle of "Takeshar" and marched on Lahore and captured the city and extended his father's kingdom yet further.

During his reign many losses were incurred on his kingdom by the Ghaznavids. During the battle of Chach between Sultan Mahmud and Anandapala, it is stated that "a body of 30,000 Gakhars fought alongside as soldiers for the Shahi Emperor and incurred huge losses for the Ghaznavids." ["The Last 2 Dynasties of the Sahis" rof. Abdur Rehman, Delhi 1988,p152] It is also mentioned in the same text that "the Gakhars (or Khokhars) formed a very significant force in the armies of the Sáhis". ["The Last 2 Dynasties of the Sahis" Prof. Abdur Rehman, Delhi 1988,p.31]

Despite the heavy losses of the enemy, he eventually lost the battle and suffered much financial and territorial loss. This was Anandapala's last stand against Sultan Mahmud.

Anandpala eventually signed a treaty with the Ghaznavid empire in 1010CE and shortly a year later died a peaceful death. "R.C Majumdar" [D.V. "Potdar Commemoration Volume", Poona 1950, p.351] compared him ironically to his dynasty's ancient famous ancestor "Porus, who bravely opposed Alexander but later submitted and helped in subduing other Indian rulers." And "Tahqíq Má li'l-Hind" finally revered Anandapala in his legacy as "noble and courageous". ["Tahqíq Má li'l-Hind "p.351]

Tirlochanpal Shah

Tirlochanpála, the son of Anandapala, ascended the throne in about 1011CE. Inheriting a reduced kingdom, he immediately set about expanding his kingdom into the Siwalik Hills, the region of the "Rai of Sharwa". His kingdom now extended from the River Indus to the upper Ganges valley.

According to Al-Biruni, Tirlochanpála "was well inclined towards the Muslims" and was honourable in his loyalty to his father's peace treaty to the Ghaznavids. He later rebelled against Sultan Mahmud and was eventually assassinated by some of his own mutinous troops in 1021-22CE, an assassination which was believed to have been instigated by the "Rai of Sharwa" who became his arch-enemy due to "Tirlochanpala's" expansion into the Siwalik ranges. ["The Last 2 Dynasties of the Sahis" Prof. Abdur Rehman, Delhi 1988,p166] .

He was romanticised in Punjabi folklore as the "Last Punjabi ruler of Punjab."

Bhimpala Shah

Bhímapála, son of Tirlochanpala, succeeded his father in 1021-22CE. He was referred to by Utbí as "Bhīm, the Fearless" due to his courage and valour". ["The Last 2 Dynasties of the Sahis" Prof. Abdur Rehman, Delhi 1988,p166] Considering his kingdom was at its lowest point, possibly only the control of "Nandana", he admirably earned the title of "fearless" from his enemy's own chronicle writer. He is known to have led the battle of "Nandana" personally and seriously wounding the Commander of the Ghaznavid army "Muhammad bin Ibrahim at-Tāī" ["Utbi", vil.ii, p.151]

He ruled only five years after his father before meeting his death in 1026CE.

His remaining descendants, "Rudrapal" and his brothers "Diddápála" and "Anangapāla" had settled in Kashmir and played a major role in the court of Kashmirian king "Ananta" (1028-63CE). According to the "Rājtarahginī", ["Rājtarahginī"vii, p.145] "Rudrapal" proved himself extravagant in personal valour by crushing the rebels of the king, as commander in chief of the Kashmiri royal army.

Al-Biruni, despite living under Sultan Mahmud's grace, praises the house of Jayapala:

Kalhana writes of the Shahis:

The Janjua Rule of Mathura

"Raja Dhrupet Dev Janjua" ruled Mathura state in about 1150CE. Dhrupet Dev was also the ruler of the Mandu fort of the Shiwalik hills. He was well known for being a Pandava descendant through "Prince Arjun's" great grandson "Maharaja Janamejaya".

Raja Dhrupet's rule of Mathura ended in 1195CE when Qutb-ud-din Aybak, the general of the Ghorid army, attacked Mathura and exiled the ruling royal family. According to Mohyal historians (Gulshan-e-Mohyali) Raja Dhrupet's younger brother Raja Shripat Dev, accompanied the exile back to the Siwalik hills. Shripat Dev later, "established his dominion at Katasraj (old name Namaksar) in Tehsil Pind Dadan Khan, Distt. Jhelum." The Mohyal commanders in chief of the Janjua army at this point were Rai Tirlok Nath Bali and Bam Dev Bhimwal. [ [http://www.mohyal.com/gms/m_member.htm Mohyals] ] ["Glossary of the Tribes and Castes of the Punjab and North West Frontier Province" by Horace Arthur Rose, 1990, p134]

The Rise of Raja Mal Khan

"Raja Dhrupet Dev" was the father of a famous Janjua Sardar "Raja Ajmal Dev Janjua" who embraced Islam in the 12th century and rose to become the next rising force of the Janjua Rajput. He followed the Islamic tradition of change of name after conversion and was then known as Raja Mal Khan. He was among the first Muslim Rajputs recorded in Indian history. This conversion was done before the armies of Shahabudin Ghauri entered into the Indian Plateau to conquer whilst he was very young in his teens and inclined towards Islamic philosophy of the Sufis brought by the Dervishes of the Chistiya order.

Raja Mal Khan migrated from "Mandu fort" in the Siwalik Hills to the "Koh-i-Jud" and settled at "Rajgarh" which he later renamed "Malot". He re-conquered the Salt Ranges of Punjab to establish the dominion which his forefathers lost almost two centuries earlier to the Ghaznavids. ["Journal of Central Asia" Vol. XIII. No.1, 1990,p.78] ["The last 2 Dynasties of the Sahis" by Abdur Rehman, Delhi 1988 p270] (Malot was originally called Shahghar or Rajghar - meaning home of the Shahis/Kings but was later changed to "Malot" in recognition of its famous King Raja Mal.)

The "Tarikh-e-Alfi" of the Ghorids mentions the rebellious behaviour of "Raja Mal Khan" towards the Delhi Sultanate. It records that a "Rai Mal" of the mountains between Lahore and Kabul excited a rebellion against them and intercepted communications between Lahore and Ghazni. ["Chronicles of Early Janjuas" Dr Hussain Khan, iUniverse, 2003, p16]

There is still today remnants of an ancient fort in Malot, Chakwal which was initially built by the Shahis and later rebuilt by "Raja Mal Khan". It is also inscribed that the last Hindu Shahi prince Raja Mal embraced Islam at this place. [source [http://www.geocities.com/prpakistan_chakwal/archaeological_attractions.htm Chakwal reference] ]

"Raja Mal Khan" was also the first ruler to begin the mining of salt in the "Salt Ranges" of "Kallar Kahar" and in the Khewra Salt Mines of Punjab which is currently the world's second largest salt mine. [source [http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/Academy/3308/kallar.html Kallar Kahar] ]

The Main Branches of The Janjua Rajput

Many prominent Muslim tribes trace their lineage back to the Janjua through the princes of the House of Raja Mal Khan Janjua. The princes were Raja Bhir Khan, Raja Jodh Khan, Raja Kala Khan and Raja Khakha Khan. Jodh and Bhir were born of a Gakhar Rani while Kala, and Khakha were born of another Rajput Rani. ["Journal of Central Asia", Vol. XIII, no.1, 1990 p79]

Khakha Rajputs

"Raja Khakha Khan" was succeeded by three sons, "Faggal Khan", "Aliya Khan", "Mangi Khan" who took over from him on his death. The Raja's of the Khakha Janjua" of Kashmir and Pakhli" became a renowned tribe of the Kashmiri region. "Raja Khaka Khan's " descendants inhabit Muzaffarabad, Kot Khakha amongst other villages near the Jammu frontier of Kashmir. ["Chiefs and Families of note in the Punjab" Sir Lepel H. Griffin K.C.S.I., 1909 Lahore, p214]

The Khakha Rajputs are renowned for being a powerful and warlike Muslim Rajput tribe. During the period of the Afghan overlordship over the region of Kashmir it is recorded that they, "...paid little to their overlord and were practically independent." Even when the "Sikh empire" tightened their hold over the "Jhelum Valley" of Kashmir, the "Khakha Rajputs" retained a privileged position. ["Imperial Gazetteer of Kashmir and Jammu", Sang e Meel, 2002, p9, p34]

The proud and privileged position of the "Khakha Rajputs " within their kingdom as well as their strong alliance to the "Bhambas" Sultans is renowned throughout their history in the region. Their power and dominance aided "Yakub Shah" in his defence of Kashmir, in what was the first defeat of Mughal Emperor Akbar in 1582 on his first incursion into the Kashmir valley. But Akbar eventually returned more powerful and finally conquered the region in 1586. ["Imperial Gazetteer of Kashmir and Jammu", Sang e Meel, 2002, p24, 34]

Sir George Campbell of the British Raj referred to them as "...a curiously handsome people."

The "Khakha Rajputs" have continued their ancestral tradition of the recording of the family lineal tree. The above all indicate a strong a continuance of the Janjua traditions by the "Khakha Rajas", making them a highly successful and powerful branch of the Janjua dynasty. They have always been a force to be reckoned with in the "Jhelum Valley" and their reputation as a defiantly fierce warlike tribe is well renowned. ["Culture and Political History of Kashmir" by Prithivi Nath Kaul Bamzai, MD Publ. Ltd., 1994, p637, p669, p670]

Raja Jodh and Raja Veer/Bhir

According to Lepel H. Griffin:

The descendants of Raja Jodh had continued to rule this region through various interruptions until the age of Maharaja Ranjit Singh. "Raja Bhir (also spelt Veer, meaning Brave)" meanwhile took over Malot (Rajghar) state in Chakwal from his father. Raja Bhir's son, "Raja Acharpal" became a famous chief after his father's death. The above mentioned "Ahmed Khan" was in fact "Acharpal", who later changed his name after converting to Islam.

It was particularly these two branches who waged the greatest wars against the Gakhars;

"Malik Darwesh Khan"

"Malik Darwesh Khan Janjua" of "Garjaak/Girjakh Jehlum" (son of "Raja Sanghar Khan" mentioned below and descendant of "Raja Jodh") was a highly renowned warrior king of Jhelum.

Malik Darwesh had fought the Gakhar chief "Hathi Khan Gakhar" in Punjab. "Malik Darwesh Janjua" defeated Hathi Khan famously in a decisive and courageous battle causing him to flee defeated to "Basal", while Hathi's cousins "Adam Khan" and "Sarang Khan" escaped to "Dangalli". Malik Darwesh Khan recovered the territory that was taken from his tribe by Hathi Gakhar. ["Gazetteer of the Rawalpindi District 1893-94, Punjab Government", 2001 Sang-e-Meel Publ., Lahore]

The recovered territories were distributed amongst his tribe, of which one part formed his own "Kingdom of Darapur", spreading over twenty two large villages and estates. Even to day the area is called in Vernacular Bai (22) Deis (land, villages, etc) firstly at Malikpur and then shifted to Darapur (today Malikpur is a small village where no Janjua resides; but almost entire landed property is held by the Janjua Rajas of Darapur. In this area besides Darapur the main villages of Janjua abode are "Chakri Dhuman Khan". It has become known as "Chakri Rajgaan since the fame of General Asif Nawaz Janjua as Chief of Army Staff. "Bajwala Dattan" is now known as "Bajwala Kalan".

General of the Imperial Mughal Army - "Malik Darwesh Khan Janjua" was a distinguished and noted General of the Imperial Mughal Army under Emperor Akbar's reign, in a campaign to capture Prince "Mirza Hakim" in June 1581 ["Akbarnama" Abu-l-Fazl, trans by H.Beveridge, Sang-e-Meel Lahore 2005, p412]

His relationship with Emperor Jalaluddin Akbar was a close one. It is noted that when the Emperor visited Malik Darwesh Khan's fortified city, Malik Darwesh ordained that his extended Kingdom of "Girjak" will henceforth be renamed to "Jalalpur" ["Panjāb Under the Great Mughals, 1526-1707" by Bakhshish Singh Nijjar, Thacker 1968, p191 ] in honour of the Emperor and the Janjua's relationship. Jalalpur (now Jalalpur Sharif) at this point was a flourishing centre of trade for the region. ["The Ancient Geography of India. I." by Sir Alexander Cunningham, Adamant Media 1871, p163]

Malik Darwesh Khan's great-grandson, "Raja Shabat Khan" had fought under "Sardar Mahan Singh Sukarchakia" (father of Maharaja Ranjit Singh) in many campaigns in the late 18th century. But upon Raja Shabat Khan's death, the Sikh chief "Sardar Atar Singh Dhari" assassinated his son and successor, "Raja Ghulam Muhi-ud-din Khan." ["Punjab Chiefs", Lahore 1909, p215]

The Janjua didn't appear to trust the Sikhs thereafter and rebelled valiantly against their rule.

"Malik Darwesh Khan's" later descendant "Raja Zaman Mahdi Khan of Darapur", was also distinguished by Sir Lepel H.Griffin as a true noble:

Raja Zaman Mehdi Khan Janjua distributed his inheritance equally in four parts between himself and his three brothers, "Raja Shakir Mehdi Khan Janjua, Raja Abdullah Khan Janjua", and "Raja Paindah Khan Janjua".

Later "Raja Shakir Mehdi Khan Janjua" died issueless (he had two sons who fled away, and now their descendants are said to be at Qasur) and his share was reassigned back to "Raja Zaman Mehdi Khan Janjua", whereupon "Raja Zaman Mehdi Khan Janjua" was admitted as Chief of Family and was conferred the title Malik.

It may be added that as per decision made at the time of "Malik Zaman Mehdi Khan" (when he was appointed as Chief of Family) only the eldest son of the Chief of Family shall be the decorated as Chief of Family and only he shall use the title of Malik while all others shall be called as Raja.

Nawab Talib Mehdi Khan Janjua

"Malik Zaman Mehdi Khan's "only son, "Malik Talib Mehdi Khan" served as "Deputy Commissioner, Ambassador to Kabul", and trusted "Prime Minister of the Bhawalpur State" ["Biographical Encyclopedia of Pakistan" by Biographical Research Institute, Pakistan 1956, p777] . Malik Talib Mehdi Khan was appointed as Nawab with the rank of Major without attachments of any kind. He assumed rulership of the tribe after his father's death. At this point, almost the entire warrior tribe served in the Imperial Army. ["The Partition Omnibus", David Page, Anita Inder Singh, Penderel Moon, G. D. Khosla, Mushirul Hasan, Oxford 2002, p62)]

Nawab Malik Talib Mehdi Khan Janjua had only one son, the late Nawabzada Malik Afzaal Mehdi Khan Janjua MNA. He was Chief of the family after the death of his father.

The only son of "Nawabzada Malik Afzaal Mehdi Khan Janjua" is "Nawabzada Malik Iqbal Mehdi Khan Janjua", "Ex-Provincial Minister", and Member of National Assembly (1988-1999 [ [http://www.findpk.com/yp/NA/NA_Members_From_1972_To_1997.htm MNAs - Pakistan] ] ). He succeeded the rule of the "Darapur Estate" after his father's death and is the current Regal Chief of the Darapur Janjua Dynasty.

"Raja Najeeb Ullah Khan Janjua" (the paternal nephew of Malik Zaman Mehdi Khan Janjua who in his turn was the father of "Nawab Talib Mehdi Khan) was among first Imperial soldiers from Imperial Indian Army to get the "King’s Commission". "Raja Najeeb Ullah Khan" was the first Muslim to receive the prestigious "King’s Commission", and he was in the British Battalion.

"Raja Ghulam Mehdi Khan Janjua" [the paternal nephew of "Nawab Talib Mehdi Khan and father-in-law of "Nawabzada Iqbal Mehdi Khan Janjua" (Current Chief of the Darapur dynasty) was a Provincial Civil Servant at the time of Independence and later on retired as Deputy Commissioner.

"Raja Masoud Mehdi Janjua " is the first science graduate of Darapur Family; he joined "Election Commission of Pakistan" and retired as Deputy Election Commissioner.

"The Janjua Sultans"

The Janjua Sultan of Watli, "Sultan Fateh Muhammad Khan" (descendant of Raja Jodh through Raja Sun Pal) who valiantly opposed the Sikhs, holding them off for over 6 months in Kusuk Fort, Watli.For which Ranjit singh gave salt mines of khewra and 40 villages to the Sultan as compensation. His later descendant, "Sultan Raja Azmat Hayat ", has also served as Member of the Provincial Assembly of Pakistan. Upon his death on 15th February 2003 his son Sultan Raja Azam Hayat succeeded the estate of Kusak fort and was crowned as next sultan of the "Watli Dynasty".

The Janjua Sultan of Makhiala, "Sultan Firoz Ali Khan" was a famous warrior king of his time and from "Raja Jodh's" line through "Raja Rai Pal". He strongly opposed Maharaja Ranjit Singh during his conquest of Punjab. After his death his son "Ali Haider Khan" was crowned Sultan. But he ruled for a very short period before his own untimely death. His son "Ashgar Ali Khan" was then crowned the next "Sultan of Makhiala" ["Punjabi Chiefs" L.H.Griffin, Lahore 1909 p217]

During the 20th century, "Watli Sultan Dynasty" and the "Darapur Dynasty" were united through marriage.

Raja Sarang Khan - Ruler of Kot Sarang

"Raja Sarang Khan" was a powerful warlike Rajput king (of the Raja Jodh Janjua line) who's Warrior Life earned him an extraordinary reputation of valour which is still celebrated today. He conquered a vast region in Jhelum and built a strong fort called "Kot Sarang Qilla" after his name.

His life was spent in adventure and heroic battles. Having lived his life on the battlefield, he ultimately met his death on one, near Makhad fighting the Afghans. His descendants still reside at "Kot Sarang" descended in a long line of distinguished chiefs such as "Raja Muhammad Khan". ["The Golden Book of India: A Genealogical and Biographical Dictionary of the Ruling Princes" by Sir Roper Lethbridge, Adamant Media Co. 2001, p343, p344]

Ranial and Dhamial Rajputs

Ranial Rajputs and Dhamial Rajputs are a branch of the Janjua through Raja Bhir and Raja Jodh respectively. According to "Tehreek-e-Janjua" ["Tehreek-e-Janjua",Raja Muhammad Anwar Khan Janjua, Sahiwal Press, vi, p224] these two Rajas employed a sudden military onslaught to conquer the areas of Ranial and Dhamial. The repute of their military success spread far and wide amongst other dominant clans of the day. "Raja Malu" took the area Ranial whilst "Raja Mubarak" took the Dhamial plain. Interestingly, Raja Malu's offspring were known as the "Rajas of Ranial" and Raja Mubarak's offspring likewise known as the "Rajas of Dhamial." This later culminated in the recognition of these two branches as simply Ranial Rajas and Dhamial Rajas. Their influence today is recognised in key roles of administration and as members of local government.

Raja Kala Khan - Sultan Ahmed Sani

"Raja Kala Khan" became the ruler of "Kahuta" district in present day Rawalpindi, Pakistan. He became Muslim early on his rule and following tradition, changed his name to "Sultan Ahmed Sani." His two sons, "Juss Rai" and "Patt Rai" were united in their control of "Kahuta". It comprises over sixty villages of various clans including Gakhars, Minhas and Awans. Raja Kala Khan's descendants are in abundance in "Kahuta" Rawalpindi. Most of his descendants work in the Pakistan Army and are fine sportsmen including Amir Khan and Sajid Mahmood. A "Mazhar" (Large Tomb) was erected on his death and his descendants congregate every year at this Mazhar to commemorate his life. His descendants refer to as "Dada Pir Kala."During Ahmed Shah Abdali's conquest of Northern India, he was allied by "Sardar Ameer Khan" of "Kahuta", the chief of the Kahuta Janjua Rajas.

"Sardar Bahadur Noor Khan son of Sardar Baqar Khan" was a prominent personality of the Matore Janjua branch of Raja Kala Khan, and was conferred the title of Sardar Bahadur by the British Raj. He was elected as the MLC and Vice Chairman of the District Board Rawalpindi. After his death, his son, "Khan Bahadur Sardar Feteh Khan" was elected as MLA from Kahuta and Murree Tehsils in 1937.

"Kharwal Rajputs of Kahuta"

The "Kharwal" or "Garwal Rajputs" of "Kahuta" (not to be confused with "Garewal" which are a distinctly different tribe and settled in India) are a branch of Janjua through "Raja Kala Khan". They reside only in the hills of the eastern half of the Kahuta region called the "Kahuru ilaka."

They have been recorded by Sir Denzil Ibbetson as:"'"“ ...a fine strong race, decidedly superior to the ordinary (non Janjua) Rájpúts, and socially much the same position as other Janjúas ”""'

Kharwal Rajput chiefs were Sardar Baqar Khan and Sardar Nawab Khan. In the early 1884 as Raja Ali Mardán Khan and Raja Burhán Ali Khan, who were counted in the census as Janjua Rajputs

The Janjua and the Mughal Emperor Babur

There is a handwritten "Parwana" (letter of gratitude) by the minister of world conqueror Amir Timur to the Janjua Sultan family of Watli, Pakistan for their service to his , which is still held by them to this day. ["Chronicles of Early Janjuas" Dr. Hussain Khan, iUniverse 2003, p22] The Janjua were honoured by Amir Timur for supporting his conquest of India, throughout his campaign. ["The Punjab Chiefs" Sir Lepel. H.Griffin, 1909 Lahore] This formed the foundation for the later loyal alliance between Amir Timur's celebrated descendants, the Mughal Emperors and the Janjua. The Mughal conqueror Babur made overtures to the Janjua, and detailed them in his famous Baburnama:

An important ally of Babur's campaign of Punjab, the warrior prince "Langar Khan Niazi" was also stated by Babur to be a maternal nephew of the Janjua. The Niazi Pakhtun tribe is amongst the most powerful and leading Pakhtun tribes since ancient times:

The Janjua chief "Malik Hast (Asad)" was recorded by Babur as, "the lone ruler of the tribes and clans in the Sohan River area." " He was invited by Babur to unite with him through Malik Hast's nephew Langar Khan Niazi. ["The Baburnama", 2002, W.M Thackston p271]

The hand written record of Amir Timur was brought to Babur by "Raja Sanghar Khan" and "Malik Hast (Asad)". Babur honoured this record. The Janjua Rajas were now allies to the "House of Babur." Babur allowed the Janjua to continue their rule in their respective Kingdoms as before. ["Chronicles of Early Janjuas" by Dr. Hussain Khan, iUniverse 2003, p.22]

The Baburnama also mentions "Malik Hast (Asad)" and "Raja Sanghar Khan" as strong warriors and assigned important roles as reinforcements to important strongholds. "Malik Hast" himself being only 23yrs old according to Babur's estimation and yet trusted staunchly with this responsibility. ["The Baburnama", 2002, W.M Thackston, p278]

The "Janjua Rajputs" also took part in the battles against "Rana Sangha" in 1527AD in which the Mughals famously defeated the Sesodia Rajputs who had allied with the Afghans against him. "Raja Sanghar Khan Janjua" is stated to have been involved in charging the army of "Sangha" when they came out of the fortress and after overwhelming them, the Mughal allies put them to flight. ["The Baburnama", 2002, W.M Thackston, p377]

Forts and Castles of the Janjua

Many forts within Punjab are still remnant of their royal past, such as the "Kusak" fort, "Sohava" fort, "Khushab" fort, "Garjaak" castle in "Makhiala" Jhelum, "Malot" fort in Chakwal District, "Nagi" fort, "Dalowal" fort, "Dhandot" fort, "Kath" Saghral and "Masral" fort, "Dhak Janjua" fort, "Akrand" fort, "Anderana" fort, "Sialkot Fort (which was given to the Janjua by "Sultan Firuz Shah Tughluq" who accepted their suzerainty in that region in about late 14th century ["Tareekh-i-Janjua"Raja Muhammad Anwar Khan Janjua, Sahiwal Press, p71] and many more. Some of these forts were lost, other's gained as the changing climate of rulers endured.

However, the "Kusak" Fort is still in control of the Janjua Sultan of "Watli. The "Watli Sultans" were the descendants of "Raja Jodh Khan" through his second son "Raja Sunpaal".

It has been recorded how the Janjua "Sultan Alim Khan" constructed Kusak fort. In the early 19th century, "Sultan Fateh Muhammad Khan of Watli", valiantly opposed Maharaja Ranjit Singh himself who in " "...about 1810 besieged it (in person) ineffectually for six months until the want for water by his subjects compelled the Sultan to surrender." ["Archaeological reconnaissances in north-western India and south-eastern Iran" by M.A.Stein, London 1936, p46] The fort was immediately reinstated to the Sultan.

Characteristics of the Janjua Rajputs

The Janjua Rajputs possess a proud Martial reputation and rank very highly as the "aristocracy of the Salt Range". Their pride in their ancestry is renowned and are always addressed by their ancestral title of Raja. ["Rawalpindi District Gazetteer" Robertson, 2001, Lahore, p105]

Their exploits and reputation has earned them the regard as the most Valiant Kshatriyas (warlords) in the Punjab. ["History of Mediaeval Hindu India" by Chintaman Vinayak Vaidya, Cosmo Publ. 1979, p129]

The tribal system of loyalty to the clan is still adhered, and they tend to only align with other tribes of equally high social rank and reputation. ["The Aftermath of Partition in South Asia" Gyanes Kudaisya, London 2000, p207]

The Janjua are famed as a restless and warlike Muslim Rājput tribe ["Imperial Gazetteer of Kashmir and Jammu", Sang e Meel, 2002, p9, p34] and are "doubtless pure Rājputs"". ["Imperial Gazetteer of India", v. 14, p152. [http://dsal.uchicago.edu/reference/gazetteer/pager.html?objectid=DS405.1.I34_V14_158.gif] ] ["The Indian Village Community" by Baden Henry Baden-Powell, Adamant Media Corp. 2005, p97]

Today a great many Janjua are employed in the Pakistan Army and Navy, as well as the Police Forces in Pakistan and the United Kingdom.

It is interesting to note, that despite the separation of the five major branches of Janjua, all branches appear to have remained equally strong in the regional politics and in retaining their "traditional Royal warrior characteristics" and "defiant sense of independence".

Martial Distinction During the British Raj

During the nineteenth century, the British rulers of India, quickly realised the Martial potential of the Janjua Rajput, and designated them as a Martial Race. The Janjua were heavily recruited into the British Indian Army. ["The Jhelum Gazetteer" 1907, Lahore Press, p254] ["Punjab Chiefs" Lepel H. Griffin, 1909 Lahore, p215-7] The British held a high regard for the Janjua recruits;Due to their high aristocratic status, Janjua princes refused to serve in any regiment that was not commanded by either a "Janjua" or another commander of equal social standing, a rule that the British duly honoured when selecting regiments for them. ["The Garrison State", Tan Tai Yong, Sage Pub. Inc, p75]

Janjua contribution to World War I & II

The Janjua also took part in the Allied Forces, during both World War I and World War II, with very high numbers. The tribes of Jhelum and Rawalpindi particularly supplying the largest numbers. ["A Hundred Horizons", Sugata Bose, 2006 USA, p136]

Famous Janjua in The Pakistani Army and Government

Jawan Sawar Muhammad Hussain (Shaheed)

Jawan Sowar Muhammad Shaheed Janjua of the "Raja Jodh" line of Gujar Khan, received the Nishan-e-Haider from the Pakistani Government, which is known as the Highest Gallantry Award of Pakistan, for sacrificing his life for his country. His ancestral village in now named after him in honour of his valiant memory [ [http://www.geocities.com/menofvalor2001/muhammedhussain.html Mohammed Hussain Janjua (1949 - 1971)] ]

General Asif Nawaz Janjua

General Asif Nawaz Janjua of "Chakri Rajgan", of the "Raja Darwesh Khan" line (see above), was a highly notable General of the Pakistani Army achieving the high grade of "Chief of Army Staff" in August 18, 1991:

Naik Saif Ali Janjua Shaheed

Saif Ali Janjua of Kashmir received "Hilal-e-Kashmir" which is equal to Nishan-e-Haider . He fought in the Kashmir sector during the 1948 War and embraced martyrdom. The young soldier hailed from Kashmir. [ [http://www.ispr.gov.pk/Archive&Press/Sep2006/6-Sep.htm Rawalpindi September 6th] ]

Major General Shah Nawaz Khan

Raja Shah Nawaz Khan, hailing from Matore, born in January 1914, "Raja Kala Khan Janjua" side ["The I. N. A. Heroes: Autobiographies of Maj. Gen. Shahnawaz, Col. Prem K. Sahgal" by Prem Kumar Sahgal, Shah Nawaz Khan, Gurbakhsh Singh Dhillon, Hero Publ.1946, p15, p60] , was a famous freedom fighter for the acclaimed INA of Subhash Chandra Bose. He was a close aide and follower of the legendary Indian Leader. He was one of the three freedom fighters brought to trial by the British Raj in the famous "Red Fort Trial" of 5 November 1945, charged with "waging war against His Majesty the King Emperor" ["A Hundred Horizons", Sugata Bose, 2006 USA, p136] . He famously represented by none other than Jawaharlal Nehru. When the trial began a mass demonstration was going on outside the Red Fort. People gave voice to their resentment on the trials by shouting;

cquote|"Lal Qile se aaee awaz, Sahgal Dhillon Shah Nawaz, Teenon ki ho umar daraz!"

("Meaning – Sahgal, Dhillon, Shah Nawaz, comes the voice from the Red Fort. May the trio live long)"|30px|30px|

After the partition of India and Pakistan, Raja Shahnawaz decided to stay in India and his descendants still reside in India. He chaired the enquiry into the death of Subhash Chandra Bose in 1956. He later became an Indian Government Central Minister. He was also god father to Mrs "Lateef Fatima" who is the mother of Bollywood Megastar Shah Rukh Khan. [ [http://www.telegraphindia.com/1040531/asp/frontpage/story_3313328.asp Badshah at durbar and dinner] ] "Raja Shah Nawaz Khan" died in 1983, with full National Honours, draped in the proud Indian Tri-Colour flag. He was buried in the famous grave yard of Jamia mosque, Delhi. His funeral was also attended by Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi.

Major General Iftikhar Khan Janjua

Major General Iftikhar Khan Janjua of the Jhelum Janjua branch. Known as a National Hero in Pakistan, given the popularly known reference "The Hero of Rann of Kutch" after his death in the "1971 Indo-Pak War". In National commemoration for his last memorable sacrifice for his country, Iftikhar Khan Janjua Road in Rawalpindi, the road to the Army headquarters (GHQ), is named in his honour. [ [http://www.museum.com/jb/museum?id=44918 Army Museum] ]

Brigadier Amir Gulistan Janjua

Brigadier Amir Gulistan Janjua served in the "Pakistan Army". Upon retirement, his excellency was appointed as Pakistan's Ambassador UAE, Nepal and Saudi Arabia. He also served as Governor of the North Western Province of Pakistan between 16 Jun 1988 to 19 July 1993. He is the current President of the "Friends of Nepal" Organisation. A highly respected and nationally renowned Raja.

Raja Mohammad Zafar Ul-Haq

His excellency Raja Mohammad Zafar Ul-Haq of Matore, Rawalpindi descended of the "Raja Kala Khan Janjua" line. He is the Chairman of the Muslim League Party [ [http://www.paktribune.com/news/index.shtml?173805 No solution of Kashmir without wishes of Kashmiris: Yasin, Zafar] ] and also is also the "Secretary General of the World Muslim Congress" since 1992. He has also served as Pakistan's Ambassador to Egypt from 1985, as well as served as "Leader of the House" (Pakistan Senate). He was a close associate and minister of information and religious affairs of President Zia ul Haq during his reign. He was also member of cabinet of Prime minister Nawaz Sharif.

Muhammad Ashraf Janjua

Raja Muhammad Ashraf Janjua, worked in the office of Executive Director for Pakistan at IMF, Washington D.C. before a long and prolific career with the State Bank of Pakistan which culminated in his tenure as Deputy Governor. Among other research work, he is the author of the "History of State Bank of Pakistan Volume-III (1977-88)" and "Volume-IV (1988-2003)". He is currently Senior Fellow with the rank of Professor (Economics) and "Dean of College of Business Management (CBM)", Karachi, Pakistan

Khan Bahadur Shah Nawaz

Khan Bahadur Shah Nawaz was from village Mowara, tehsil Kahuta. He was the first Muslim Subedar Major of Frontier Force Regiment. In 1893, he was ADC to Field Marshal Lord Roberts, Commander-in-Chief in India. He was awarded the title of Khan Bahadur in 1903. His two sons Lt. Sher Ali,OBI and Capt. Faqir Ullah,OBI,MC (also 'Mentioned in Dispatches' three times) fought in the First World War. Capt Faqir Ullah was amongst the first three Indians to be selected for the King's Commission but just months before he could get it was killed in action in 1918. His family to this day is upholding the tradition of soldiering.

Tehmina Janjua

Tehmina Janjua is a Pakistani diplomat currently Deputy Permanent Representative in United Nations [Source [] ] .

Abdul Mateen Janjua

Is a famous and educated personality of Sialkot Pakistan. He specialised in Child Labour Elimination programme and serving in ILO since 1997 to eliminate and socially rehabilitate the working children here. He has served in many projects to socially rehabilitate the working children and their families. [source [www.swedwatch.org/swedwatch/content/download/416/2090/file/SwedWatch%20report%20public%20procurement.pdf] ]

Famous Janjua in Sports

Amir Khan - Boxing

Amir Khan is a well known Janjua Rajput [ [http://www.saddoboxing.com/4787-amir-khan-2.html Amir Khan] ] , born in Bolton, originally hailing from Raja Kala Khan's line of "Matore" [ [http://www.dawn.com/2004/09/01/spt11.htm Amir's performance brings joy to his grandparents] ] is a world class boxer. He was a silver medallist in the 2004 Olympics whilst only 17yrs old. He was a Gold medallist in the previous 2003 Junior Olympics.

ajid Mahmood- Cricket

Sajid Mahmood hailing also from Matore, from Raja Kala Khan's line. He is a world class cricketer, playing professionally for the England Cricket team and also for his home county of Lancashire. In 2003, he won the "NBC Denis Compton Award 2003". [ [ Sajid Mahmood] ]


Janjuas are spread throughout Punjab both in India and Pakistan.

There are Sikh, Muslim and Hindu Janjuas ["Sikhism and Punjab's Heritage" by Wazir Singh, Publication Bureau, Punjabi University 1990, p160] , the majority of Muslim Janjuas are in Pakistan and serve in the Military of Pakistan Police in large numbers, with further numbers in Politics.

"Raja Bhir" descendants reside primarily in "Malot Chakwal" and Jhelum holding some sub branches, such as Ranial Rajputs and "Dhamial" in Rawalpindi

"Raja Jodh" descendants inhabit mainly the Jhelumregion although some sub branches were displaced during the Sikh Conquest, migrating to "Malowal" and whilst the last Raja of Jalalpur "Raja Abdullah Khan" conquered Ratala, Gujar Khan. Some numbers are also in Azad Kashmir.

"Raja Kala Khan" descendants inhabit the "Kahuta" region of Rawalpindi exclusively, with some residence also in Gujar Khan also.

"Raja Khakha Khan" descendants reside in the lower Jhelum Valley of Kashmir in "Muzafferabad" and "Kot Khakha regions".

"Raja Tanwali/Tanoli" descendants reside in Mansehra, Haripur, Hazara with some sub branches in Rawalpindi.

The Sikh Janjua Rajputs are in abundance in Hoshiarpur, Faridkot, Kapurthalla and Fatehghar Sahib of Indian regions of Haryana in Punjab.

The Hindu Janjua Rajputs reside in the Indian Punjab region also, with some movements also to Delhi.

Royal Titles

Raja - The aristocratic Janjua clans of Pakistan use their ancestrally inherited title of Raja. Janjua Rajputs are always referred to "Raja". ["Panjab Castes" Sir Denzil Ibbetson, Delhi, 2002, p132, p149, p154]

Nawab - The title Nawab was conferred on the ruler of the Darapur State, "Malik Talib Mehdi Khan". His current descendants use the title as Nawabzada since the abolition of Princely States in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Current chief of the famed Darapur Dynasty being, "Nawabzada Iqbal Mehdi Khan".

Kunwar - (pronounced "Koo-war") Hindu Janjuas use the title of "Kunwar" with their names. The variation of the pronounced word, "Kanwar" is also used by Muslim Janjuas also. "Kanwar Muhammad Dilshad" being the Secretary of the Election Commission of Pakistan.

Malik - The title Malik (meaning prince) is used by a branch of the Jhelum Jodh branch of Janjua. "Malik Darwesh Khan" and "Malik Hast (Asad)" were known by these titles. Janjuas of Shadia Dist Mianwali are also referred to as Malik. (They are in dominance in Shadia and have the following sub clans; "Mulkai Khel, Pattu Khel, Aziz Khel, Longi, Musi, Shah Mir Khel, Janu Khel, Ahmed Khel, Shah-wali Khel, Mehrwan Khel, Zaid Khel, Malu Khel" and "Sikandri Janjua".

Sultan - The tribal chief of the Janjuas of Watli, who also retains control of the Fort of Kusak uses the centuries revered title of Sultan which was conferred by Mughal Emperor Babur. The title was also conferred to the King of the Makhiala Janjua branch. The prestigious name of the "Watli Sultans" and the "Sultans of Makhiala" was held in greater esteem after their successful resistance against the Sikhs. The title is only held by the Regal Chief of these two respective clans and is not used by any other Janjua at all.

Mirza - A well-known Janjua chief of "Ratala" tehsil Gujar Khan, "Mirza Atta Mohammad Khan" was known by the title of Mirza (Persian title of Prince of the blood) and was a renowned tribal chief of "Ratala" during the early to mid 20th century. His great grandfather "Raja Abdullah Khan" (descendant of "Malik Darwesh Khan"), being displaced by the upheaval of the Sikh conquest of "Garjaak" and "Darapur" ["Punjab Chiefs" Sir Lepel H.Griffin KCSI, 1909 Lahore, p216] took his remaining army and conquered the region of "Ratyal" from a Ratyal chief who was loyal to the Sikh empire. His domain was over seven large villages consisting of Mughal Kayanis, Jatts and Gakhars. He defeated the Ratyal Chief and renamed it "Ratala."

Khan - Traditionally applied to a Islamic Tribal chief, the title has been used by the heads of the respective Janjua branches since before the 16th century. Mughal Emperor Babur himself recorded the use of this title by the Janjua Lords. ["The Baburnama", 2002, W.M Thackston p273]

ee also

* [ Hindu Shahi reference]
* [|Amir Khan Janjua]
* Ranial Rajputs
* Khakha
* Shahi

External links

* [http://www.janjuarajput.co.uk Janjua Rajput History website] ]
* [http://www.apnajhelum.com First Website of Jhelum - Urdu Version]
* [http://www.apnajhelum.net First Website of Jhelum - English Version]


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