The first Hazara uprising against Abdur Rahman Khan took place between 1888 and 1890. When Emir Abdur Rahman's cousin, Mohammad Eshaq, revolted against him, tribal leaders of the Sheikh Ali Hazaras joined the revolt. The revolt was short lived as the Emir extended his control over large parts of Hazarajat.
After all of Sheikh Ali Hazaras' chiefs were sent to Kabul, opposition within the leadership of Sawar Khan and Syed Jafar Khan continued against the government troops, but at last were defeated. Taxes were imposed and Afghan administrators were sent to occupied places, where they subjugated the people with abuses. People were disarmed, villages were looted, local tribal chiefs were imprisoned or executed, and the better lands were confiscated and given to Afghan nomads (Kuchis).
The second uprising occurred in the Spring of 1892. According to Syed Askar Mousavi, the cause of the uprising was an assault on the wife of a Hazara Chieftain by Afghan soldiers. The families of both the man and his wife, deciding that death was one hundred times better than such humiliation, killed the soldiers involved and attacked the local garrison, from whence they recovered their confiscated arms". Several other tribal chiefs who supported Abdur Rahman now turned against him and joined the rebellion which rapidly spread through the entire Hazarajat. In response to the rebellion, the Emir declared a "jihad" against the Shias and raised an army of up to 40, 000 soldiers, 10, 000 mounted troops, and 100,000 armed civilians (most of which were Pashtun nomads). He also brought in British military advisers to assist his army.