A man claiming to be descendant of Afghan ruler Ahmad Shah Durrani, better known as Ahmad Shah Abdali, has filed a petition in the Lahore high court against the Punjab (Pakistan) government for cancelling lease of 182 acres of land given to his family by British rulers near Barki.
Petitioner Shahpur Durrani said that after the creation of Pakistan the federal government honoured the lease of the land and decided not to disturb it. “However, the Punjab government has recently occupied 182-acre land near Barki (near Lahore) to construct an IT university and cancelled the lease,” he said.
Durrani said the British rulers had given the land to his ancestors as a reward of their services for Muslims. He asked the court to set aside the act of the government and restore the land lease to his family.
Abdali (1722-1772) was the founder of the Durrani Empire and is regarded as the founder of the modern state of Afghanistan. He was chosen as the king of Afghanistan in 1747 and within a few years extended his control from Khorasan in the west to Kashmir and north India in the east.
Durrani’s famous victory over the Marathas at the battle of Panipat in 1761 influenced the history of the subcontinent; in particular, the British policymaking in the region.