i know of your passion for pommels, but to take a picture of the pommel would require either 8 foot long arms or a step ladder. as the curator was kind enough to allow me in to see them, i thought a step ladder pushing my luck. sorry about the arms.
i know what you mean by busy but i dont find this at all. this style of decoration is of the highest quality and the fact that it is completely geometric shows the artistry to be of a top calibre. the 19thC koftgari was second rate in comparison. the decoration is of the 18thC and there is a katar in the wallace collection of the same style of work.
this is true tahinashan and very rare at this level.
as you say, hendley claims the best form of tahinishan to be of a simpler design but i cant see fault in this at all. i think mr hendley had more to compare it with
in the same paragraph, he goes on to mention a sword hilt from tonk in the V&A (then the south kensington museum). i have seen the hilt in question and and the embossed flowers were bold and i suppose of a simpler, less busy design, but i personally think the wellington hilt of a higher quality.
this same hilt (from tonk) was illustrated by h.h.cole in his photographic book of the simla exhibition of 1881 and so they both may agree with you