Circumstances dictated that Brigadier Burrows' column came to be
operating in a very different situation to that envisaged when it set out
from Kandahar on 3 July 1880. The change took place on 11 July when some
6000 British-equipped local Afghan troops in a blocking position at Girishk
mutinied and left to join Ayub Khan's rebel army approaching from Herat.
General JM Primrose at Kandahar, although expecting the 4th and 28th Native
Infantry Regiments to reach him by the end of the month, until then had
insufficient troops to secure his garrison and was unable to reinforce
Burrows to compensate for his loss. Ayub's approach had also unsettled the
countryside around and local Afghan villagers had turned against the British.
The result was that when Burrows later advanced on Maiwand his force could
move only slowly being "encumbered with an enormous quantity of ordnance,
commissariat stores and baggage" which could not safely be left behind at the
camp at Kushk-i-Nahku.