At the age of twenty he obtained from Zaman Shah, the king of Afghanistan, a grant of Lahore, which he seized by force of arms in 1799.
He left twentythree sons, of whom the fifth, Zaman Mirza, by help of Payindah Khan, head of the Barakzai family of the Abdalis, succeeded in grasping the royal power.
For many years barbarous wars raged between the brothers, during which Zaman Shah, Shuja-ulMulk and Mahmud successively held the throne.
The attention of the British government had been directed to Afghan affairs ever since the time of Sir John Shore, who feared that Zaman Shah, then holding his court at First Lahore, might follow in the path of Ahmed Shah, Afghan and overrun Hindustan.
Three years before Timur had died, and his third son, Zaman Shah, by the intrigues of an influential sirdar, Paiyanda Khan, and been proclaimed his successor at Kabul.
From Meshed Aga Mahommed sent an envoy to Zaman Shah, asking for the cession of Balkh, and explaining his invasion of Khorasan; but the Afghan monarch was too perplexed with the troubles in his own country and his own insecure position to do more than send an unmeaning reply.