The Constitution of the Preeminent Government of Afghanistan


Niẓāmnāmah-ʼi asāsī-ʼi dawlat-i ʻillīyah-ʼi Afghānistān is the Persian rendition of the constitution of Afghanistan dating from the early part of the reign of Amanullah Khan (1919‒29). Drafted shortly after the defeat of the British in the brief Third Anglo-Afghan War, the constitution declares in its first provisions the sovereignty of the newly independent Afghanistan, proclaims Islam as the official religion, and designates Kabul as the official capital. Also expressed is the hereditary nature of the Afghan monarchy, which it stipulates is to pass to the offspring of Amanullah Khan. The subsequent clauses of the document are grouped in sections and cover the universal rights of the citizenry, of ministers, of government functionaries, and of members of congress. The document subsequently deals with the judicial system and the high court, financial affairs, and provincial governments, before concluding with a section on miscellaneous provisions and the proclamation of the authority of the document by virtue of its having been ratified in the “Grand Assembly of the East (luya jirga-ʼi samt-i mashriq).” The grand assembly referred to is the loya jirga of Jalalabad, held in the winter of 1921‒22. The first of four such grand assemblies held during the reign of Amanullah Khan, the loya jirga of Jalalabad was attended by 872 tribal leaders and dignitaries who ratified the constitution, lending support to the rule of Amanullah Khan. That the original text of the constitution was drafted in Pushto is indicated by the fact that this document is expressly stated as consisting of a Persian translation of the original. The document was printed on Tuesday, April 10, 1923, in 2,500 copies.

Last updated: January 10, 2018