Genealogical Chain of Sultan Bahoo

Awan Tribe

Sultan Bahoo belonged to the Awan tribe whose genealogy traces back to Ali ibn Abi Talib. Awans are the progeny of Ali ibn Abi Talib from wives other than Fatimah bint Mohammad.
Like contemporary writers, he adopted the way of writing few lines to introduce himself in the beginning of his books. Next Sultan Bahoo would shed light upon the objective of the book. Wherever he introduces himself, he always writes Awan with his name. In his book Nur-ul-Huda Kalan, he writes:
The writer of this treatise is the Fakir of Sarwari Qadri order and annihilated in Hoo ( ھُو ). The son of Bazayd belonging to Awan A resident of Qila Shor (may Allah save it from tribulations and troubles). I always speak the truth.
He writes same lines, with change of a few words, in almost all of his books. Thus this proves that he genuinely belonged to the Awan tribe.

Who Are Awans?

Who are Awans? From where did the tribe Awan originate and to where did it migrate? The Awan tribe has Arab origins. Awans descend from the progeny of Ali ibn Abi Talib but from wives other than Fatimah bint Mohammad. Sultan Bahoo belonged ti the Awan tribe.

When Sayyids left Arab

Now, Sayyids left Arab due to troubles they had to encounter there. Consequently, they started living in different areas of Iran and Turkistan. The Awan tribe helped them in those hard times as they were their close relatives. That is why their family name changed from Alvis and Hashmis to Awans which means ‘those who helped the Sayyids’. Moreover the Syeds continued their religious obligations even when they left Arab. On the other hand Awans engaged themselves in wars and battles and conquered Herat. Qutb Shah, the ancestor of Awans, died while he was the ruler of Herat. The title ‘Shah’ is usually a part of the names of Sayyids but Awans also use this title.

Migration to India

When Sayyids migrated from Khorasan to India due to chaos and tribulations, Awans accompanied them. In short they entered Punjab through the mountains of Kalabagh and river Indus or river Attock. Here also, Sayyids remained engaged in religious obligations rather than involving in worldly affairs. Thus, Sayyids of various castes like Bukharis, Gilanis, Shirazis, and Hamdanis from areas of Uch Sharif, Bhot Mubarik, Choa Saidan Shah and Danda Shah Bilawal respectively guided people towards Islam and blessed them with their beneficence. While, Awans occupied Kalabagh and entering through the western bank of river Attock captured the Hindu forts of Malik Dhani, Pothohar, Koh Pakhro, valley of Soon Sakesar, Koh Patao, Koh Tawa, Koh Khaon and settled there. The Hindus of these areas accepted Islam due to the influence of Awans. Now Awans are in majority in these areas.

Mir Qutb Shah – Forefather of Awans

Professor Ahmad Saeed Hamdani elaborates about Awans and their forefather Mir Qutb Shah in his book Ahwal-o-Maqamat Sultan Bahoo:

Mahmud of Ghazni set for India to attack the Somnath temple. Then a troop of Alvis headed by Mir Qutb Shah (or Mir Qutb Haider) requested to accompany him. Hence Sultan Mahmud allowed them and named them Awan. Afterwards, they became famous by this title.
Awans fought the battle valiantly so Sultan Mahmud was pleased with them. When they returned, Mir Qutb Shah requested Sultan to allow them to crush the Rajput landlords and nawabs who ruled other areas of the country. Sultan Mahmud accepted the request.

So Mir Qutb Shah attacked the Janjuas and Chauhans’ Rajputs. They ruled the surrounding areas of present Pothohar Plateau and the Salt Range (now in Punjab, Pakistan). He drove them down the mountains. Hence Awans captured the beautiful valleys of these mountains and settled here. Later, they became famous as Qutb Shahi Awan.

An article writer of Urdu Daera Ma’arif Islamia (Punjab University) writes:

The ancestors of Sultan Bahoo came to India from Arab after the martyrdom of Husayn ibn Ali. Firstly, they settled in Pind Dadan Khan District Jehlum (now in Punjab, Pakistan). Then they spread Islam among the Hindus of that area. Later on they shifted to Shorkot, District Jhang.

Qutb Shahi Awans

Mir Qutb Shah is actually the person after whom Awans are called Qutb Shahi Awans. Under his leadership, Awans joined the army of Sultan Mahmud of Ghazni and then settled in the valley of Soon Sakesar.

Genealogy according to Professor Ahmad Saeed Hamdani

Professor Ahmad Saeed Hamdani writes about Hazrat Sultan Bahoo family tree::

“Mir Qutb Shah’s genealogy traces back to Mohammad ibn al-Hanafiyyah, son of Ali ibn Abi Talib. His ancestors reached Afghanistan with the Sayyids who are progeny of Ali ibn Abi Talib and Hazrat Fatimah. While protecting them and fighting for them with the rulers and settled in Herat. Afterwards, they joined the army of Sultan Mahmud.

Thereupon the progeny of Mir Qutb Shah flourished in Pothohar. They got married with the daughters of the defeated rajas after they accepted Islam. These newly convert Muslims and the tribes who earlier came with Qutb Shah had now become relatives, due to inter marriages and had children. For this reason they all related themselves to Mir Qutb Shah. As he was the source of link and the most famous and outstanding person between them. Even now, they call themselves Qutb Shahi Awans wherever they live. In summary it is a known fact that Mir Qutb Shah lived in Anga in the valley of Soon. Yet nothing about the year of his arrival or death have been mentioned by the writers. Neither anyone mentions period of stay nor whereabouts of his shrine.”

Genealogical tree according to book Manaqib-e-Sultani

In Manaqib-e-Sultani, Sultan Hamid Ali writes about the genealogical tree of Sultan Bahoo also known as Hazrat Sultan Bahoo shajra nasab. Albeit with the reference to a book which he got from the library of Awan landlords of Kalabagh, Pakistan. The lineage is given below:
Sultan Bahoo son of Bazayd Mohammad son of Shaikh Sultan Fateh Mohammad son of Shaikh Allah Ditta son of Shaikh Mohammad Tameem son of Shaikh Mohammad Manaan son of Shaikh Mohammad Moghla son of Shaikh Mohammad Paida son of Shaikh Mohammad Saghara son of Shaikh Mohammad Anun son of Shaikh Mohammad Slaa son of Shaikh Mohammad Behari son of Shaikh Mohammad Jaimoon son of Shaikh Mohammad Hargan son of Shaikh Anwar Shah son of Shaikh Emir Shah son of Shaikh Qutb Shah son of Amaan Shah son of Sultan Husayn Shah son of Feroz Shah son of Mehmood Shah son of Shaikh Fartak Shah son of Shaikh Nawab Shah son of Shaikh Darab Shah son of Adham Shah son of Shaikh Abeeq Shah son of Shaikh Sikandar Shah son of Shaikh Ahmad Shah son of Hajar Shah son of Emir Zubair son of Ali ibn Abi Talib. (Manaqib-e-Sultani)

Difference of opinion on genealogical tree given by Sultan Hamid Ali

The genealogy of Awans is correct and authentic from Mir Qutb Shah onwards. Before him, there is some difference of opinion. Malik Sher Mohammad gives a genealogical record in his book Tareekh-ul-Awan. He is a member of Kalabagh family. This record is different from that mentioned in Manaqib-e-Sultani. According to Sultan Hamid Ali, the lineage of Awans reaches Ali ibn Abi Talib through his son Emir Zubair while Malik Sher Mohammad says that it reaches Ali ibn Abi Talib through his son Mohammad ibn al-Hanafiyyah.

Abdul Manaan Ghazi son of Mohammad ibn al-Hanafiyyah son of Ali ibn Abi Talib.

Sultan Hamid Ali writes that the lineage of Sultan Bahoo traces back to Ali razi Allah anhu. Further it reaches him in twenty eight steps through his son Emir Zubair. Mother of Emir Zubair was Memna. She belonged to the progeny of Rostam Farrokhzad (a powerful Sasanian general). However, none of the reliable books of history (e.g. The Kitab Al-Ma’arif, Tareekh-e-Tabri) mention any son of Ali ibn Abi Talib by the name ‘Emir Zubair’ or any grandson by the name ‘Hajar Shah’. Some people solved the confusion by concluding that Abu Zubair must be the patronym of Mohammad ibn al-Hanafiyyah. Which is why, some people have written only Zubair instead of his full name.

Genealogical tree according to Malik Sher Mohammad author of Tareekh-ul-Awan

The lineage given by Malik Sher Mohammad in Tareekh-ul-Awan is as follows:

Mir Qutb Shah son of Shah Ataullah Ghazi son of Shah Tahir son of Shah Tayyab Ghazi son of Shah Mohammad Ghazi son of Shah Umar Ghazi son of Shah Malik Asif Ghazi son of Shah Batal Ghazi son of

Shaikh Abu Bakr Sindhi the writer of Anees al-Waizeen
Only the writer of Anees al-Waizeen Shaikh Abu Bakr Sindhi briefly mentions about Emir Zubair in his book in these words:

Emir Zubair stepped forward from the army of At that time, Husayn had three brothers with him i.e. Zubair Ali, Talha Ali and Jafar Ali. Zubair was the only son of his mother. When he came forth to fight, Husayn said to him:
“O brother! Do not put your mother in trail. She does not have any other son.”

His mother replied loudly from her place:

“O Husayn! Please do not say so. Let me and my son sacrifice our lives for you. Without you, our life is useless.”

Husayn wept on listening this and embraced Zubair.

Further the writer of Anees al-Waizeen adds:

“After this, Zubair attacked the enemy with all his power and got martyred.”

Genealogical tree according to Mohammad Sarwar author of Wadi Soon Sakesar – Tareekh, Tehzeeb aur Saqafat

Mohammad Sarwar Awan disagrees with both of the aforementioned lineage records. In his book, Wadi Soon Sakesar-Tareekh, Tehzeeb aur Saqafat, he writes:
It is a historically proven that Awans are the descendants of Ali ibn Abi Talib. All in all their lineage reaches him through his son Abbas Alamdar. On the contrary some historians and writers have ignored all the historical evidences. By trying to prove that Awans are the descendants of Mohammad ibn al-Hanafiyyah. However, this is merely on the basis of assumptions. Given that they have made the history of Awans doubtful. Some references are given below which will prove that Awans are the progeny of Abbas. Abbas was the son of Ali ibn Abi Talib. Further their forefather was Qutb shah of baghdad instead of Malik Qutb Haider:
According to the historians, only five sons of Ali ibn Abi Talib had families. Rest of them either did not have children, died before being married or got martyred in a battle. It is clearly written on page 377, chapter Matam of the Persian book Rozatul Shuhada:
“Only five sons of Ali ibn Abi Talib were left; Hasan, Husayn, Mohammad Akbar (generally known as Mohammad ibn al-Hanafiyyah), Abbas and Umar ibn Ali.”

(Rozatul Shuhada’s writer was Mulla Husayn Waez Kashfi. Its Urdu translator was Allama Saim Chishti. Newal Kishore Press Lucknow, India, published it.)

What does the author of book Manaqib-ul-Mehbubin says?

Mohammadi Publishers published the book Manaqib-ul-Mehbubin in Persian. In this book it is written on page 11 under discussion about Ali ibn Abi Talib:
“The family of Ali continued from his five sons only. They are Hasan, Husayn, Mohammad ibn al-Hanafiyyah, Abbas and Umar ibn Ali.”

 What books Nasab al-Aqwam, Zikr Al-Abbas and Mirat-ul-Asrar say?

  • According to the books Nasab al-Aqwam, Zikr Al-Abbas and Mirat-ul-Asrar, the family of Ali ibn Abi Talib continued from his five sons. They are Hasan, Husayn, Abbas, Mohammad ibn al-Hanafiyyah and Umar ibn Ali.

(The book Nasab al-Aqwam is in Arabic. Iran is the country which publishes it. Further Shaikh Abdul Rehman Chishti (1095 H) authored the book Mirat-ul-Asrar. Captain Wahid Bakhsh Siyal translated it in Urdu and in 1993 it published.)

All the given references prove that the lineage of Ali ibn Abi Talib continued from these five sons only. According to the book Kitab-ul-Takhfeed, the children of all his sons are called Alvis. Although in Indo Pak there is a difference. The children of Hasan and Husayn are famous as Sayyids and those of other sons are called Alvis.

What books Meezan Hashmi, Meezan Qutbi and Khulasa-tul-Ansaab say?

According to the books Meezan Hashmi, Meezan Qutbi and Khulasa-tul-Ansaab, Qutb Shah, is the descendant of Abbas. The actual statement of the books is:

ومن العلویین الاعوان و شجرتھم  ھذا’’عون بن علی بن حمزہ بن طیار بن قاسم بن علی بن جعفر بن حمزہ بن حسن بن عبداللّٰہ بن عباس بن علی بن ابی طالب ہاشم القریشی‘‘ و عون بن علی المشہور علی بن قاسم و عبدالعلی و عبدالرحمن و ابراہیم و قطب شاہ کال من البغداد مافرالی الھند و قام فصاد اولادہ اکثر ھم المشہورون بالعلویین و لبقیتم بالاعوان۔   

Meaning: Awans are from Alvis and their lineage is as:

Awn son of Ali son of Hamza son of Tayyar son of Qasim son of Ali son of Jafar son of Hamza son of Hasan son of Abdullah son of Abbas son of Ali ibn Abi Talib.

Awn bin Ali also known by the names of Ali bin Qasim, Abdul Ali, Abdul Rehman, Ibrahim and Qutb Shah.

He belonged to Baghdad and migrated to India with his family. Thereupon they stayed in India for some time. Some of his children became known by the title of Alvi and some by Awan. (Wadi Soon Sakesar-Tareekh, Tehzeeb, Saqafat)

Biography of Qutb Shah in words of Mohammad Sarwar Awan

Mohammad Sarwar Awan gives reference of the Persian book Meezan Hashmi while writing the biography of Qutb Shah in his book Wadi Soon Sakesar-Tareekh, Tehzeeb, Saqafat. That statement is:


His name was ‘Awn’ and he belonged to the progeny of Abbas ibn Ali. Above all his wife Ayesha was the sister of Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani’s mother Fatimah.


Initially, Awn belonged to the Shia sect. After the birth of his son Gohar Ali, some doubts occurred in his mind regarding this sect. Even after having long discussions with scholars of different sects, he was not satisfied, rather they confused him more.

Change of Sect
Then, in 471 H, Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani was born to his wife’s sister Fatimah. One day, Awn went to her home with his wife. As soon as he saw the sacred face of Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani, the Shia faith extinguished from his inward. Therefore he joined the Sunni sect and offered prayer in their manner on the same day. He then followed this Islamic sect till his last breath.

Oath of Allegiance (al-bayah / bayat)
When the whole world knew the grand status of Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani. Then the Muslims from all over the world started taking oath of allegiance (bayat) on his hand. Awn also took oath at his sacred hand. Moreover he kept it secret from his companions. Until he reached the spiritual status of Qutb-e-Maddar (the highest rank of Sainthood). Then, he shared this secret with his elder son Gohar Shah. He also took oath of allegiance at Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani’s hands. After a few days, they declared it openly that they have joined the Sunni sect. Further they have become the disciples of Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani.

Awn then took his whole family to Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani and all of them had oath of allegiance at his hand.

Migration to India
Shaikh Abdul Qadir ordered some of them to stay in Baghdad and others to travel to India. Obeying the order, Awn left some of his family members in the service of Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani. He then set out for India with his sons Abdullah and Mohammad. Awn promoted the Qadri order in India.

He was titled as ‘Qutb Shah’ because of his spiritual status of Qutb-e-Maddar. Disciples of Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani used to call him ‘Qutb’. While the Indians added ‘Shah’ to his name.

After some time, Qutb Shah returned to Baghdad on the order of Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani. Here, he fell ill with diarrhea. Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani came to see him. He died on Friday 3rd Ramadan, 506 H. Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani conducted his funeral prayer. He had buried in the Quraish Tomb. At that time, his son Gohar Ali had four children. Gohar Ali, commonly known as ‘Golarah’, settled in the sub-continent with his family at the order of Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani. Notably his progeny still lives in the sub-continent. (Pg 105-106)

Disagreement with date of death
Mohammad Sarwar Awan has written 506 H as the year of death of Qutb Shah. It does not seem correct because in 506 H Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani had not adorned the throne of Divine guidance and persuasion. Doctor Memon Abdul Majeed Sindhi has written Qutb Shah’s year of death as 552 H, which is probably correct.

Mohammad Sarwar Awan adds:

According to the books, Meezan Qutbi, Meezan Hashmi and Khulasa-tul-Nisaab, Qutb Shah belonged to the progeny of Abbas ibn Ali. He was born in Baghdad, travelled to India and Herat, then returned to Baghdad, died and is buried there. His children still live in India.
On the contrary, some Awan writers have tried to prove without any evidence that Awans were the children of Mohammad ibn al-Hanafiyyah. Sultan Mahmud of Ghazni for their services in his army gave them the title of Awan. These are mere suppositions because they have not given any evidence from the authentic books of history to prove their statement. Their point of view is merely on hearsay. (Wadi Soon Sakesar-Tareekh, Tehzeeb, Saqafat Published by National Institute of Lok Virsa Islamabad and Al-Faisal publishers, Urdu Bazar Lahore)

  • Genealogy according to Doctor Memon Abdul Majeed Sindhi author of Pakistan Mein Sufiana Tehreekain
    Doctor Memon Abdul Majeed Sindhi is writer of the book Pakistan Mein Sufiana Tehreekain. He writes that Sayyid Qutb Shah of Baghdad was the spiritual successor of Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani. Additionally, he got the robe of succession directly from him. He elaborates:
    Sayyid Awn Qutb Shah Alvi of Baghdad is also famous by many other names. These are Ali, Awn, Abdul Rehman, Abdul Ali, Ibrahim, and Qutb Shah. His lineage reaches Ali ibn Abi Talib as follows:
    Sayyid Awn son of Qasim son of Hamza Sani son of Tayyar son of Qasim son of Ali son of Hamza al-Akbar son of Hasan son of Abdullah Madni son of Abbas son of Ali ibn Abi Talib.

Qutb Shah was born in 419 H (1028 AD) and died on 3rd Ramadan, 552 H (1161 AD). He is buried in the tomb of Quraish. His progeny lives in the sub-continent, Arab and Iran in large number. Moreover, the Awans of Pakistan claim to be his progeny.

Genealogy according to author of Mirat-e-Sultani

The author of Mirat-e-Sultani writes his lineage record as:
Awn titled as Qutb Shah son of Ali son of Emir Tayyar son of Emir Qasim son of Emir Ali son of Emir Ibrahim son of Emir Jafar son of Emir Hamza son of Emir Hasan son of Emir Abdullah son of Emir Abbas son of Ali ibn Abi Talib.

Proven facts in words of Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen Sultan Mohammad Najib-ur-Rehman

I have mentioned all the available lineage records to bring forth the facts. Though, it should be kept in mind that Manaqib-e-Sultani is the first book on the life history of Sultan Bahoo. Additionally its writer Sultan Hamid Ali belonged to the seventh generation of Sultan Bahoo. Therefore he has given the lineage record of Awans which he extracted from a book of the library of the landlords of Kalabagh. The second lineage record is by Malik Sher Mohammad Awan in his book Tareekh-ul-Awan. He also belonged to Kalabagh. The writers copy aforementioned lineage records without any authentic research. Mohammad Sarwar Awan has given the lineage record after substantial research. Likewise he has also proved its authenticity. However, there is still room for further research.

Qutb Shah is forefather of all Awans

What is important despite all the controversies and differences in the lineage record of Awans presented by various authors? It is the fact on which everyone agrees upon that all the genealogical trees reach Qutb Shah. Moreover he is unanimously the forefather of all the Awans. Notwithstanding where they live.

Awan are children of Ali from wives other than Fatimah bint Mohammad

It is also an accepted fact that Awans are the children of Ali ibn Abi Talib from wives other than Fatimah bint Mohammad.

Sultan Bahoo was indifferent to genealogical pride

As far as Sultan Bahoo is concerned, he did not believe in racial pride. Further he had never emphasized upon the superiority of Awans being the progeny of Ali ibn Abi Talib. Hence he writes:

  • Fakirism does not depend on being a Sayyid or a Quraish. It is by mystic knowledge only. (Nur-ul-Huda Khurd)
  • Faqr is not ancestral property, hence, it is no inheritance. (Ain-ul-Faqr)
  • If you want to be a leader and ruler then you must follow the footsteps of your great ancestors. (Here great ancestors mean Prophet Mohammad, his Companions and Saints). (Nur-ul-Huda Kalan)
  • The great level of gnosis of Allah is only by the grace and favour of Allah. He bestows this favour upon whomsoever He wishes. It is neither with family and prestige nor with fame but results from the eagerness of heart (for Allah). It is with courage and sincerity, not with being a Sayyid or Quraish. (Nur-ul-Huda Kalan)
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