The Tanolis are a prominent and famous Muslim pashtoon tribe residing mainly in the district Mansehra & Abbottabad, Hazara division of NWFP Pakistan. They have a history that spans to the early 13th century since the establishment of the Delhi Sultanate. They have ruled the state of Amb of Hazara since the 13th century up until the wars with the Sikhs in the 19th century. They were frequently engaged in rebellions with successive rulers of the Delhi Sultanate as well as allying with Ahmed Shah Abdali in his conquest of India.
Charles Allen in his book referred to them as "the extremely hostile and powerful Tanolis of the Tanawal Moutains".
They were also the last ruling dynasty of the State of Amb.
"Many Mouths, Many sayings" Many people tried to link the tanoli with their own tribe or another one else. but it's clear and accepted from the history.
Tanoli are not Jungua.
Tanoli can't be Mughals.
Tanoli are not Rajas.
Tanoli are not Abbasi.
Tanoli did't come with Greek Alaxander.
Tanoli migrated from Tonbol Pass or Taanal Pass to the Gardeez and Ghazni (Cities of Afghanistan) in 1100 AD. In 950 AD when Sultan Amir Sabuktigin invaded on Hindustan, Tanoli tribe came with his army and resided in the valley of Swat and Buner. Anwar Khan Tanoli was appointed as head or cheif of the tribe by Sultan Amir Sabuktigin.
In 1400 Tanoli tribe was prominent alliance of Ahamed Shah Abdali, Tanoli fought the battle of Pani Pat aginst Marrata. The Cheif, Zaberdast Khan Tanoli gained the title of Suba Khan from Ahmed Shah Abdale because of his bravery and boldness in the battle of Pani Pat.
Tanoli Cheif Ameer Khan martyred in battle aginst Yousfzai trib. Yousfzai occupied the area of swat and buner and compled the tanoli tribe to the estern bank of indus river.
They established the state of Amb and ruled sice 1973. They are also Khans of many villages namly Sherwan, Khotaila, Pind Kargu Khan, Kripplian, Chaamid, Shingree, Kokal, Gaajul etc of district Manshera, Abbottabad and Haripur. Some Tanoli families are still in Swat and Mingora. Few "Khails of Tanoli" are also sattled in Balochistan, Sindh and Punjab. The genesis of tanoli leads to the Prophet Hazrat Yaqoob (Halesalam), from this reference they are pashton.
Tanoli has great contribution in Tehreek-e-Pakistan & Tehmeer-e-Pakistan. They always vote & support the Muslim League being a loyal pakistani. They have also major role in the development of country, they scrified their homes and native lands for the development of country in the form of Terbela Dam.
Origins and History
Tanolis are generally divided into two groups, the Hindwal Tanolis and the Pulwal Tanolis. The Hindwal Tanolis/Tanawli were well known for ruling their state of Amb until the 19th century wars with the Sikhs. But later relations between them improved. The Tanolis entered the North-West Frontier Province history from the early 13th century when.
The Tanoli are a tribe of the Tanawal valley region in the Hazara region of Pakistan's North-West Frontier Province and Afghanistan
Although "not usually acknowledged as Pathans, the Tanoli have by long association become assimilated with them in manners, customs, and character."The tribal and cultural practices of the Tanolis closely resemble those of the Pathans". Tribally allied with the Pathans, the Tanoli participated in the frontier wars with the British and in Charles Allen's analysis of those wars, the Tanoli are described as being "extremely hostile" and "brave and hardy and accounted for the best swordsmen in Hazara.
The Tanoli are also known as Tanawal, for the name of the river. The British Census included several variant forms of the name: Taniwal Tanole Tanaoli, Tanol, Tol, Tholi, Tahoa, Tarnoli,Tanis,Tanai.
The Tanoli were first encountered by Westerners around 1700 "in the trans Indus basin of the Mahaban from which they were driven across the Indus by the Yusufzai" tribe. By the late 19th century the Tanaoli had settled the Tanawal tract in the west center of the district between Abbottabad and the Indus, and in the extensive hill country between the river and the Urash plains.
According to the Settlement Report of Hazara, compiled by Major Wace (1872), the Tanolis, who founded a state named Amb, had already established their authority over Tanawal. The voluminous Urdu copy of the settlement report of Hazara contains many passages in its historical resume of the area. In a number of maps drawn at the time and enclosed in the report, showing Hazara under the Mughals and under the Durranis, the Amb state has been shown as Mulk-i-Tanawal. The original existence of that Mulk is as old as the middle period of the great Afghan invasions of India.
The Tanoli are divided into two major sub-tribes: the Hindwal and the Pallal. The latter occupies the northern portion of the Tanawal tract, and, until the dissolution of the princely states in 1968, constituted the semi-independent principality of Amb.
According to Tanoli tradition (preserved in a commentary based on an 1881/1891 census report) they are named after a place in "Afghanistan" (not to be confused with the present-day state of Afghanistan)
As is also the case for all other ethnic groups of the region, tracing their lineage to an apical ancestor is crucial to the Tanoli's sense of identity.
The Tanoli consider themselves to descend from one Amir Khan, a Barlas Mughal who (so says their tradition) arrived in the Tanawal valley with his sons around 1500, having crossed the Indus river to get there.
The details of this tradition?as preserved in the Tarikh-i-Tanaolian ("History of Tanolies")?runs as follows: Upon defeating a Hindu king Jaipala, one Sultan Sabuktagin conquered the region up to Attock on the Indus. The victor then resettled five thousand Mughals, Syeds and Afghans in Swat where Din Khan Mughal, an Anawar, was appointed the ruler. The ancestors of the Tanoli eventually settled in Mahaban. Some time later, in search of land, they crossed the Indus river under the command of Maulvi Mohammad Ibrahim, and captured territory from the Turkic peoples settled there. Among the new settlers was Amir Khan Beerdewa and his six sons (Pall Khan, Hind Khan, Thakar Khan, Arjin Khan and Kul Khan) who settled the Tanawal region; the six clans or sub-tribes are allegedly named after the six sons of Beerdewa.
This claim of descent of Tanolis is also mentioned in The Asiatic Journal and Monthly Register for British and Foreign India, China, and Australia (1841), in the following words; "There is one chief who, though not an Eusofzye, yet from his position in the midst of, and intimate connection with, the Eusofzyes, and his singular history and character, must not be omitted in a description of the Eusofzye country. Paieendah Khan, of Tanawul, is a Mogul of the Birlas tribe, the same from which the Ameer Timoor was descended. All record of the first settlement in Tanawul of his family is lost, and it has long ago broken off all connection with the other branches of the Birlas, which are still to be found in Turkestan."
The Imperial Gazetteer of India also confirms this line of descent; it states, "Its (Tanawul's) real rulers, however, were the Tanawalis, a tribe of Mughal descent divided into two septs, the Pul-al and Hando-al or Hind-wal."
The Sikh records of the region also confirm this line of descent of the Tanolis. They state, "The family of Paeendah Khan is a branch of the Birlas, a Mogul House, well known in history. All record of its first settlement in Tanawul is lost. It may perhaps have been left there by the Emperor Baber. Among the list of whose nobles, the name Birlas is found."
Some historians have mentioned the Pathan origin of the tanoli family of the Nawab of Amb. In 'The Golden Book of India', Sir Roper Lethbridge on page 328 states about Nawab Muhammad Akram Khan, Sir, K.C.S.I The Nawab Bahadur is Chief of Amb, on the right bank of the Indus, where he and his ancestors have long been independent. Belongs to a Pathan (Muhammadan) family....
Another authoritative source, namely 'Selections from the Records of the Government of India, Foreign Department'(1856), states about the Tanolis; "It (Tannawal) is inhabited chiefly by the Turnoulees, a Tribe of martial Puthans."
The commentary to the 1881/1891 census narrates this tradition but it observes that "[however,] there can be little doubt that they are of [Indo-Iranian or Indo-European origin] and probably of Indian stock."
Some sources relate the Tanoli tribe to the Janjua Rajputs. They believe the Tanolis are offspring of one Raja Tanoli, son of Raja Mal. Raja Mal had five sons...Wir(Bhir), Jodh, Kahla, Tanoli, and Khaka. It is to be noted that the Tanolis do not support this theory and it is an exceptional case where a tribe recorded of Rajput decent by the Rajputs, denies such a connection.
Mir Painda Khan,
Mir Painda Khan, son of Mir Nawab Khan (who defeated the Durranis), is famed for his rebellion against Maharaja Ranjit Singh's governors of Hazara. Painda Khan "played a considerable part in the history of his time and vigorously opposed the Sikhs."
From about 1813, Mir Painda Khan spent a life long rebellion against the Sikhs. Hari Singh Nalwa, the Sikh Governor of Maharaja Ranjit Singh to Hazara, took the initiative during his governorship of setting up forts at strategic locations to keep Painda Khan in check.
Painda Khan's rebellion against the Sikh empire cost him a major portion of his kingdom, leaving only the tract around Amb, with his twin capitals Amb and Darband. This increased his resistance against the Sikh government.
In 1828 Mir Painda Khan gifted the territory of Phulra as an independent Khanate to his brother Madad Khan, which later on was recognised by the British as a semi-independent Princely State.
Painda Khan was the Nawab of Amb who took over the valley of Agror in 1834, but in I841 it was restored by the Sikhs to Ata Muhammad, a descendant of Sad-ud-din.
General Dhaurikal Singh, commanding officer of the Sikh troops in Hazara, had Painda Khan poisoned to death in September 1844. Painda Khan is still revered in Hazara as a hero.
Major J. Abbott commented that 'During the first period of Painda Khan's career, he was far too vigorous and powerful to be molested by any neighbouring tribe, and when he began to fail before the armies and purse of the Sikh Government, he was interested in keeping upon the best terms with his northern neighbours of the Black Mountains.' He is further described by him as, 'a Chief renowned on the Border, a wild and energetic man who was never subjugated by the Sikhs.'
Mir Jehandad Khan
"Of all the tribal chiefs of Hazara, the most powerful [was] said to be Jehandad Khan of the Tanoli." His territories laid on both banks of the Indus, and, as the son of Painda Khan, Jehandad Khan was particularly well respected among his peoples.
When Sikh power was on the fall in 1845 Jehandad Khan blockaded the garrisons of no less than 22 Sikh posts in Upper Tanawal ; and when they surrendered at discretion, he spared their lives, as the servants of a fallen Empire. "The act, however, stood him afterwards in good stead; for, when Hazara was assigened to Maharaja Golab Singh, that politic ruler rewarded Jehandad Khan's humanity with the jagir of Koolge and Badnuck in Lower Tannowul."
As far as Jehandad Khans hereditary domain of Upper Tanawal, with the capital at Amb is concerned, the term 'jagir' has never been applicable to it. The British Government considered Upper Tannowul as a chiefship held under the British Government, but in which, as a rule, they did not possess internal jurisdiction. The Chief managed his own people in his own way without regard to British laws, rules or system. This tenure resembled that on which the Chiefs of Patiala, Jhind, Nabha, Kapurthala and others held their lands.
In 1852, Jehandad Khan was summoned by the president of the Board of Administration (who travelled to Hazara to see the Khan) in relation to a murder enquiry of two British officers in his lands. When the president threatened the Khan to give up the murderers or suffer the consequences (of burning down the villages and giving the region to another), the Khan is said to have replied "We should consider your presence (in our kingdom) an honour, but our country is a 'rather difficult one' for your army."
This response was the talk of the day and it is remembered by many locals of Hazara even to this day as a heroic answer.
He was son of Painda Khan. When he died, he left a nine years old boy: Muhammad Akram Khan.
Nawab Sir Muhammad Akram Khan
During the tenure Nawab Sir Akram Khan (K.C.S.I)(1868 - 1907), son of Jehandad Khan, the fort at Shergarh was constructed, along with Dogah and Shahkot Forts. His rule was a peaceful time for Tanawal with no major conflicts. He was later conferred the title Nawab Bahadur by the British Raj.
Not to be confused with Muhammad Akram (1817-1852), one of the sons of Dost Mohammad Khan.
Nawab Sir Muhammad Khanizaman Khan
Nawab Khanizaman Khan, son of Akram Khan, helped the British in carrying out the Black Mountain (Kala Dhaka/Tur Ghar) expeditions.
Malik Nawab Khan Tanoli
Malik Nawab Khan, of Lower Tanawal, is commented by Major J. Abbot as a "Brave man" in his book written on Abbottabad. Malik Nawab Khan was a learned man and an able soldier. He was a strong religious man. Malik Nawab Khan was among the fellow tribesmen of famous Mir Jehandad Khan.
Tanoli Sub Tribes
The Hindwal and Pallal are the major divisions of the tribe. The further sub?divisions of the tribe are:
Jamal. Ledhyal. Bohal. Saryal. Hedral. Bhujal. Abdwal. Jalwal. Baigal. Tekral. Pansial. Labhyal(Suba Khani). Matyal. Bainkaryal. Dairal. Sadhal. Judhal. Parwal. Khan khel. Majtal and Islam khani
Most members of the Tanoli tribe reside in the former state of Amb in the Hazara Division of the North-West Frontier Province of Pakistan, in the cities of Abbottabad, Haripur and its district, Mansehra, Battagram and Kohistan districts. A branch of the Tanoli tribe also resides in Kashmir, mainly in Muzaffarabad and Srinagar. Tanolis are also living in some areas of Swabi,Khalabat, Nowshera, Rawalpindi, Gujar Khan and Sultanpur. A significant number of Tanolis also living in Karachi. There are also quite a few Tanoli families residing in the city of Queeta in the Balochistan Province. They dominate the Tanawal-Sherwan belt.
The principal language of the Tanoli is Hindko. Tanolis living in Pashtun dominated areas speak Pashto.
- Nawabzada Salahuddin Saeed Khan Tanoli, the present Nawab of Amb, Former Federal Minister Pakistan and five times Member of the National Assembly (1985-1999)
- Habib-ur-Rehman Tanoli, North-West Frontier Province Minister for Local Government
- Ayub Khan Tanoli, former Minister of Law, Education and Health
- Ashraf Khan Tanoli, Former Advocate-General of Balochistan
- Muhammad Younis Tanoli, Advocate-General of the North-West Frontier Province
- Malik Rabnawaz Khan Tanoli, President of the UK's Kashmir Council
- Professor Muftee Munibur Rehman, Chairman Central Royat Hillal Committee of Pakistan
- Feroze Khan/Sanjay Khan/Fardeen Khan of Bombay film industry. Feroze's recent death revealed that his father was a Pathan called Sadiq Ali Khan Tanoli, whose family moved to Bangalore from Ghazni province in Afghanistan.
- Abdul Waheed Khan Tanoli, D.I.G Frontier Police, Pakistan
- cmdBrig ilyas khan Tanoli, Drictor bahria town
- Cmd Pir Muhammad khan tanoli late hal kalu khan
1. Upper Tanowl
2. Lower Tanowl
Amb was a small princely state in what is today the North-West Frontier Province of Pakistan. The state ceased to exist in 1969, when it was merged with the province of West Pakistan.
Amb was originally known as Tanawal and was the tribal homeland of the Tanoli people. The Nawabs of the Tanolis were best known for fighting against the Sikhs under Ranjit Singh. The Nawabs later established Amb as a princely state, ranking as a non-salute state under the British Raj. In 1947 the Nawab of Amb, Mohammad Farid Khan, acceded to Pakistan. In 1969, the state was incorporated into the North-West Frontier Province and in 1971 the royal status of the Nawab was abolished by the Government of Pakistan. The construction of the Tarbela Dam across the Indus River in the early 1970s resulted in much of Amb state being submerged by the reservoir.
Rulers of Amb
The state was ruled by a dynasty who originally held the title of Mir and in 1868 were granted the title of Nawab by the British Raj. A listing of the known rulers of Amb is provided here.
Tenure Rulers of Amb (Tanawal)
Unknown date - 1818 (Mir) Nawab Khan
1818 - 1840 (Mir) Payenda Khan
1840 - 1868 (Nawab) Jahandad Khan
1868 - 1907 (Nawab) Mohammad Akram Khan
1907 - 26th February 1936 (Nawab) Zaman Khan
26th February 1936 - 1971 (Nawab) Mohammad Farid Khan
1971 - 1973 (Nawab) Salahuddin Khan
1973 Royal status abolished
1. Upper Tanowl
- Pind-kargoo Khan
2. Lower Tanowl
There are numbers of book which contains information about Tanoli, but there are four books that are exclusively written on Tanoli and their background & history.
(Tanoli Tarikhi Aahina Main)
Tanolis In the Mirror of History, written by M. Ismail Khan Tanoli.
History of Tanwal, written by Muhammad Fida.
Tanoli Al-Afghan, written by Ghulam Nabi.