Sunday, November 30, 2014

Aboriginal Races of Frontier prior to the Pashtun invasions



Even Folklore, traditions and legends are singularly silent about the races who inhabited the Frontier prior to Pashtun invasions.

Thorburn records that the Marwat plain was sparsely inhabited by a race which has left us nothing but its name,  Pothi , and this race appears to have been found in Marwat so late as three or four centuries ago when Niazis overran it from Tank.
 (Bannu or our Afghan fronteir page 14)

In the Thal or steppe of Mianwali local tradition attributes the first possession of country to a half mythical race of gigantic men , called Belemas, whose mighty bones and great earthen vesselsare even now said to discovered beneath the sand hills.
 (A Glossary of the Tribes and Castes of the Punjab and North-West Frontier ...By H.A. Rose, page 48)

 According to tradition the Kohat valley before the Bangash invasion was occupied not by Orakzais, but by the tribes of the Gabris, Safis and Maujaris, who are not now to be traced. Whoever the original inhabitants may have been they now entirely disappeared. 
(Gazetteer of the Kohat District, 1883-4 - Page 31)

Khands of the Peshawar valley, of whom very little is known, are supposed by some to be very early settlers.  (A Glossary of the Tribes and Castes of the Punjab and North-West Frontier page 49)

Henry George Raverty notes that the Budli or Budni, who consisted of several tribes and held a large tract of country extending from Nangrahar to the Indus, were displaced by the Afghans when they first entered Bangash, the modern Kunam. Raverty adds that the Budlis were expeller from Nangrahar by Sultan Bahrain, 'ruler of Pich and Lamghan. Thence they flew eastwards, according to the Akhund Darveza, and there found others of their race. Raverty hazards a conjecture that the Awans, Khathars and Ghakkars were some of the Budli or Budni tribes who crossed the Indus into Sindh-Sagar Doab. 
(Notes on Afghánistan and Part of Baluchistan by H.G.Raverty ... - Page 708)

 The Tirahis are a Dardic people who were once Hindus and populated the whole mountain country of Tirah. Pir Roshan is said to have expelled the Tirahis from Tirah. Tirahi is a 'Dardic' dialect spoken in a few villages southeast of Jalalabad in Eastern Afghanistan.

Amongst the wild and almost inaccessible hills of the Dir, Swat, and Panjkora Kohistan are to be found remnants of the population which existed in Buddhist times. All these non-Pathan tribes, who have embraced Islam and dwell in these remote parts of the Hindu Kush, are called Kohistanis by the Pathans themselves
( The Problem of the North-West Frontier, 1890-1908 By C. Collin Davies page 39)