|Biographical detail : ||The King of Afghanistan who tried to bring reforms to his country but landed in exile in Europe.
Amanullah Khan, who had declared himself emir, after his father Habibullah Khan, was assassinated in 1919, briefly united a small educated elite with the bulk of the tribes, and won a famous military victory against British arms in the same year. Success in the filed gave Amanullah the confidence to launch a Reform Programme, partially inspired by Kemal’s revolution in Turkey.
A new Afghan constitution was proclaimed, promising universal adult franchise. If implemented, it would have made Afghanistan one of the first countries in the world to give all women the right to vote. Amanullah had pushed through measures, like Turkey, which dispensed with the veil, encouraged men to wear Western clothes, sent Afghans to study abroad and authorised mixed education in Kabul schools.
Amanullah also sent emissaries to Moscow to seek assistance. The Afghan’s overture to Russia made the British, the imperial power in the region, nervous and who were now determined to overthrow Amanullah. Thus leading tribes were lured by the British to foment religious opposition to the King Amanullah Khan and finally he was toppled with a military coup in 1929.
Amanullah Khan had exiled himself in Zurich and died there.