Nagar (princely state)

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ریاست نگر
Princely state of Pakistan
1300s–25 September 1974
Nagar Map.gif
Map of Pakistan with Nagar highlighted
CapitalNagar, Pakistan
5,000 km2 (1,900 sq mi)
• Established
• Disestablished
25 September 1974
Today part ofGilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan

Nagar (Urdu: ریاست نگر, Riyasat Nagar) was a princely salute state in the northern part of Gilgit–Baltistan, Pakistan. Until August 1947, it was in a subsidiary alliance with British India. It bordered the states of the Gilgit Agency to the south and west, and the princely state of District Hunza to the north and east. From November 1947 to 1974 it was a princely state of Pakistan. The state capital was the town of Nagar.

The territory previously covered by Nagar forms three tehsils of the Nagar District of Northern Pakistan.


Nagar, founded in the fourteenth century, was an autonomous principality until the British gained control of the state following the Hunza–Nagar Campaign (1889-1893). It was a colonial princely state under the administration of the Gilgit Agency[1] until 1947, but from 1868 it was a vassal of the Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir, despite never being directly ruled by Kashmir. The rulers of Nagar were considered to be among the most loyal vassals of the Maharajas of Jammu and Kashmir, sending annual tributes to their Durbars until 1947. The British granted them a Hereditary gun salute of 15-guns.

In November 1947, the ruler, Mir Shaukat Ali Khan acceded Nagar to Pakistan, which became responsible for its external affairs and defense, while Nagar maintained internal self-government. In 1968, Syed Yahya Shah, the first educated politician of the valley, demanded civil rights from the Mir of Nagar. In 1973, when Ayub Khan's dictatorship ended in Pakistan and the Pakistan People's Party (under Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto) was elected, the government forced the Mir of Nagar to abdicate. The area was then merged with the Northern Areas.[2]

The Hunza valley looking across the river to Nagar
Mount Rakaposhi


The state was governed by the hereditary rulers of the Maglot dynasty, who were styled as Mir. The details of these early rulers are uncertain; the first definite dates available are from 1839. In November 1947, the state became one of the princely states of Pakistan. Brigadier Mir Shaukat Ali Khan was the last ruler of the State before it was abolished by Pakistani PM Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto in 1972.

Reign Mirs of Nagar[citation needed]
c.1660 Fadl Khan
c.1700 Daud Khan
~1750 Ali Dad Khan (1st time)
~1758 Hari Tham Khan (Shortest serving leader)
~1761 Ali Dad Khan (2nd time)
~1770 Kamal Khan
c.1780 - 1800 Rahim Khan I
1800 - death 1839 Rahim Khan II
1839 –1891 Jafar Zahid Khan (first time) (Longest serving leader)
1891 - 1892 regency: Raja Ozor Khan (died 1922)
1892 - death 1904 Jafar Zahid Khan (2nd time) (Longest serving leader)
June 1905 - death 17 March 1940 Raja Mir Iskandar Khan (from 1 Jan 1923, Sir Eskandar Khan)
17 March 1940 – 25 September 1974 Mir Shaukat Ali Khan (1917 – 2003)
25 September 1974 State of Nagar dissolved into Pakistan
After the dissolution of Nagar State in 1974 Elected Representatives of Nagar in the Northern Areas (or Gilgit-Baltistan) Legislative Council
1975 Syed Yahya Shah
1980 Mir Shaukat Ali Khan
1985 Qurban Ali
1997 (1) Mir Shaukat Ali Khan (2) Sheikh Ghulam Haider
2000 (1) Qurban Ali (2) Sheikh Ghulam Haider
2005 (1) Mirza Hussain (2) Muhammad Ali Akhtar
2009 (1) Mirza Hussain (2) Muhammad Ali Akhtar
2015 (1) Rizwan Ali (2) Muhammad Ali Haider
2017 Javed Hussain (by-elections in GBLA4 July 2017)[3]



There are around 90,000 inhabitants of the Nagar valley (AKRSP Census, 2000).

Nagar is home to two main ethnic groups – the Burushaski speakers and the Shina speakers. An older type of Burushaski is still spoken in the valley with a mild modern accent. A third language, Bedeski, is also still spoken in chalt


The population is traditionally predominantly Shia Isna'asheri (Jafaria).


The terrain of Nagar is extremely mountainous, which provided a certain degree of protection against invading forces. The highest mountain is the 7,788 m (25,551 ft) Mount Rakaposhi, south of the town of Nagar. The Karakoram Highway crosses Nagar, connecting Pakistan with China via the Khunjerab Pass. The road follows the Hunza river for some distance through Nagar and into the Hunza region. According to local languages Nagar Valley divided into two parts. Nagar Shinaki and Nagar Burosho.

Villages of Nagar[edit]

Shina Speaking Villages in Nagar (Shinaki/Sheenbar)

  • Chalat (Paaeen/baala)
  • Bar Valley
  • Chaprote Valley
  • Budalas valley
  • Jafarabad Valley
  • Nilt Valley
  • Thol Valley
  • Qasimabad Valley (Masoot)
  • Ghulmet Valley
  • Yal Valley
  • Pissan Valley
  • Minapin Valley

Burushaski Speaking Villages in Nagar

Bilingual Valleys in Nagar

  • Chalt Paeen Valley
  • Akbarabad Valley
  • Jafarabad Valley
  • Qasimabad Valley (Mascoot)
  • Ghulmet Valley
  • Pissan Valley
  • Minapin Valley

The Nagar villages are mainly populated by religious scholars, Educationists, Sportsmen, Craftsmen and Craftswomen, farmers, hunters and fishermen, handicrafts, miners, Shepherds, adventurers, mountaineers and so on.


  1. ^ Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Hunza and Nagar" . Encyclopædia Britannica. Vol. 13 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 957.
  2. ^ Muhammad Ismail Tehseen, Buroshall Say Nagar Tak ka Safar, Syed Yahya Shah, Brushal ke Qabail, both in Urdu, available in Municipal library at Gilgit
  3. ^ "PPP's Javed Hussain claims victory in Nagar by-elections". 9 July 2017.

Further reading[edit]

  • Mohammad Ismail Nashad, Buroshall say Nagar Tek Ka Safar
  • Syed Mohammad Yahya Shah, Rasala Buroshall
  • E. F. Knight, Zafar Hayat Paul, Where the Three Empires Meet

Sources and external links[edit]