Faqir of Ipi

Mirza Ali Khan (Urdu/Pashto: مرزا علی خان; born 1897, died 1960), known as the Faqir of Ipi, was a Pashtun from today's North-Waziristan Pakistan, Federally Administrated Tribal Areas. His followers addressed him as 'Haji Sahib' (or Respected Pilgrim). The village of Ipi is located near Mirali Camp in North Waziristan Agency, Waziristan, from where the Faqir of Ipi started his guerrilla warfare against the British Empire throughout the 1930s and 1940s until the British departure in 1947.

At one point nearly 40,000 British and Indian troops were reported to be in the field trying to capture him. His own force of armed tribesmen, probably not exceeding one thousand men, armed with rifles and a few machine-guns, and occasionally one or two pieces of antiquated cannon were fielded against this much larger British army equipped with modern artillery, tanks and aircraft. The Faqir of Ipi was always short of ammunition, had no radio communication, and relied upon a traditional network of informants and messengers for his intelligence while the British had much more sophisticated communications and intelligence capabilities developed in World War II. When he died in 1960, The Times of 20 April described him as "a doughty and honourable opponent... a man of principle and saintliness... a redoubtable organizer of tribal warfare...." But only with a tinge of irony could the obituary claim that "many retired Army officers and political agents... will hear the news with the tribute of wistful regret".

Read more about Faqir Of IpiEarly Life, Raising The Flag of Rebellion, Death

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Faqir Of Ipi - Death
... The Faqir of Ipi died at night on April 16, 1960 ... A long term sufferer of asthma during his last days, he became so sick that it was not possible for him to walk for a few steps ...