Death of a Khan

                                         By Khurshid Khan

Shamshir Ali Khan popularly known as Dr. Khan was assassinated in his native

village on the eve of the holy day of Eid ul Azha, the day Muslims all over the

world celebrate in the honour of the Prophet Ibrahim’s sacrifice of his son in

compliance to the will of Almighty. God was pleased by his remarkable submission

and instead of his dear son, the sacrifice of a sheep was accepted and from the

day onward, Muslims sacrifice animals to commemorate this sublime event in the

submission of God every year.

Dr. Khan was born in 1950 at Derai, Swat in the house of Abdur Rashid Khan

locally known as Derai Khan and Khan Baba. Khan Baba is famous for his integrity

and strict adherence to the Pukhtunwali-the Pukhtun code of life - across the

valley. To the People, he is the perfect embodiment of a typical Pukhtun. He was

a close companion of Bacha Khan, Wali Khan and still supports the nationalist

Awami National Party with extraordinary zeal and commitment. Derai Khan was

considered a strong opponent by the late Wali of Swat in the Swat State era.

Abdur Rahid Khan never bowed down in front of militants and remained in Swat

through out the insurgency. During this tumultuous period, militants incinerated

his Hujra and blew up his house abducted his two sons, Wakeel and Shawkat, and a

grand son. His grand son was accidentally killed in military shelling while

Shawkat was seriously wounded who was rescued by the military later, from

Kalakalai and Wakeel was, later on, rescued in a commando operation in Dardyal,


Derai Khan endured all these catastrophes with a demonour that behooves a great

Pukhtun and never poured out his heart to anyone whosoever. He suffered with his

people in his village while the Army was dislodging the whole valley for

launching its decisive assault operation, Rahi-e-Rast in Swat.

The whole atmosphere was pregnant with apprehensions and bad omens on the doomed

day when a suicide bomber blew up himself in front of Shmasher Ali Khan

assassinating him and wounding fourteen persons including two children and his

two brothers, Wakeel and Shawkat on 1st December, 2009. The attack was

calculative, well planned and targeted which blasted all the security measures

separating the Khan from the rest of the world in mere seconds. The news spread

like a wild fire in the whole valley and the peaceful atmosphere of Swat once

again landed in chaos and uncertainty. The unexpected and untoward incident was

so sudden that it was hard for anyone to believe it.

Speaking on the occasion of the sad demise of his son, Abdur Rashid Khan, father

of the Dr. Khan, said, “I am proud of my son’s martyrdom as he laid down his

life for the cause of peace in Swat, serving the people of the area is the

mission of my family and nobody could dare deter us from this noble cause”.

Khan Baba again affirmed his commitment and said, “His family did not abandon

the people of Swat when the militants were active in the area. We didn’t bow to

the militants’ will and will not do so in future”.

The KhyberWatch