The three Afridi Pashtuns who were captured by Indian Army in Kashmir in 1947

Pashtuns Kashmir war 1947
An Afridi Pashtun with his hands tied behind his back after he was captured near Baramulla in Kashmir, November 9, 1947. Photo by Max Desfor.


He was wearing blue British Royal Air Force uniform which he might have looted from a British soldier he killed at some point in his past.

He and two other captured Afridi Pashtuns were paraded and exhibited on streets of Srinagar. They were mounted on top of a truck. Kashmiris threw chappals at them, abused them and spit at them. An Indian woman Harshi Anand witnessed this scene in her girlhood and mentioned it to Andrew Whitehead in her interview.

“Yes, yes, I saw them (tribals). When Indian army came, they captured them, three or four, and they brought them to Lal Chowk, Many, mob gathered there, and they were throwing chappals and they were abusing them. Those people, they were really looking like brutes…. very feracious looking, in plain clothes. No Amry clothes, in plain clothes….Many people gathered there, because they were standing in the center, and people were throwing chappals and abusing them and spitting at them. And those people, they were also very defiant….They were just roped, and they were standing there…I thought that these are brutes and very bad people.” 1

They were also put on display in front of Indian politicians and journalists, as can be seen in the video down below. 

These tribesmen had fought an intense battle with regular Indian Army (supported by aircrafts, armored cars, artillery etc.) with just rifles on 7th November in the outskirts of Srinagar and got defeated. They had been trying very hard to capture Srinagar since 27th October 1947 with no support from local Kashmiris. After the defeat, Pashtuns realized that they cannot defeat regular Indian Army in open plain area of Srinagar with their rudimentary weapons, so they fled. The three Pashtuns could not get on lorries and were left behind. They were captured by Indian Army who were chasing them after the battle.

I could not obtain information about their final fate.

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