Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Barak Khattaks


Barak Khattaks (of Karak), 1868's Photograph



The Barak clan belongs to the Tari division of the Khattaks, descended from the Yasinzai sub-division. They occupy the Barak Tappa. This tract is bounded in the east by Shakardarra and the Isa Khel Tehsil of Mianwali district and in the south and west by the Wazirs and Bannu district.

The Barak clan is divided into four divisions , namely, the Uzshdah, Land, Mandan and the Manzi divisions. Some of the sections of the Barak Taris are bracketed into two groups , the Uzshdah Baraks and the 'Land' Baraks. This grouping of the sections , probably does not follow any genetic lineage , rather is based on a legend. The word 'uzshdah' means long , while 'land' means short . It is said that once the sons of Ismail (grandson of Barak) met a pious Faqeer , Suraz Khan. Each one of the two brothers gave a cow as an offering to the Faqeer. The Mashi's cow was healthy , with a long tail and of a rich 'Khaki' colour. The 'Faqeer' was pleased , accepted the offer and said, "Mashi has brought the Khaki. Let a large company of men follow him"..... The Tarki's cow was small and had a cut tail and was thus blemished . The Faqeer in taking the offer said, "tarki has brought a cow with a tail cut short , Landa. Let a small band of men follow him". Since then Tarki was called 'Land' for his 'Landa' cow while Mashi was called 'Uzshdah'. To this day the Uzshdah are said to be more numerous than the three branches of the 'Land' and in their old tribal feuds the 'Land' generally suffered the most.