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Variyan Kunnathu Kunjahammed Haji

December 31, 1920
Mirza Firuz Shah
Jahangir II 1920-1948

Variyan Kunnathu Kunjahammed Haji



Chakkiparamban Variyankunnathu Kunjahammed Haji (1883-20 January 1922 ) was an activist of the Khilafat Movement, known for his violent protest in Kerala. In open defiance of British rulers and landlords, for more than six months in most parts of the then Eranadu and Valluvanadu taluks. He seized control of a large area from the British rule and set up a parallel government of his Islamic State in Malabar, named 'Malayala Rajyam' and now part of the Kerala State, India, with his long term mentor, friend Ali Musliyar. 

He was convicted and executed in March 1922. Haji was born in a Muslim merchant family in 1883 in Valluvangad. His family later moved to Nellikuth village, near Manjeri, Malappuram district. He was the second child of his parents, Chakkiparamban Moideenkutty Haji and Kunjaisha Hajjumma. Moideenkutty Haji was a merchant, farmer, and local leader.  He was imprisoned in Andaman for taking part in the 1894 Mannarkkad Rebellion. He pursued his basic religious education from village Madrasa, later upgraded as 'Ezhuthukalari' where the Malayalam language was also part of the curriculum. 

He studied many Arabic texts from Mammad Kutty Musliyar. After his father was deported to Andaman, Haji was brought up in his mother's family. His grandfather was also a local leader, he appointed a teacher named Balakrishnan Ezhuthachan, from whom he learned Malayalam and basic English along with other grandchildren of his grandfather. 

He was also trained in martial arts along with his primary education Haji could also be seen as the one who was very passionate about traditional Mappila art forms, he used to conduct Kolkkali, Daffumutt, and Katha Prasangam. It is also said that he was a good singer too. The acceptance he acquired through performing arts soon made him popular in the community. 

The deportation of his father and other rebels and the seizure of their lands and properties followed triggered his anger and hostility towards the British. There are many events that could be seen as undercurrents that caused Malabar War.

The conflict between tenants and landlords along with the British following the evacuation of tenants from their farming lands fired up the British.

Tenants were mostly from lower caste and Mappilas. 

The immediate reason for the Malabar War was the rumor spread that the British army destroyed the Mamburam mosque and Makkham following the British army's raid in the mosque in the name of an arm hunt.

Ali Musaliyar, followed by a crowd went to Thirurangadi Kacheri(the compound including a police station, register office, magistrate court, post office) to inquire about the incident. Seeing Ali Musaliyar and the crowd with him the Collector ordered the Police to shoot them without any provocation. 

The crowd was huge, they got triggered by the sudden action and started to attack back. They killed some Policemen and seized the police station. Collector and other officials fled to Calicut.


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Ismail Mazari

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Very good information.


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