Ethnic group

poptime=3,941,176 [ [http://www.joshuaproject.net/languages.php?rol3=hno&sf=text&so=asc Joshua Project: Hindkowan people:] total population found by adding all Hindko speakers]
3,940,000 [ [http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=hno Ethnologue: Languages of Pakistan] ]
flag|India: 4,394 [http://www.censusindia.gov.in/Census_Data_2001/Census_Data_Online/Language/Statement1.htm Abstract of speakers’ strength of languages and mother tongues – 2001] , "Census of India" (retrieved 19 March 2008)] cite web|url = http://www.joshuaproject.net/peopctry.php?rop3=104709&rog3=IN| title = Hindko, Northern speakers in India|publisher = The Joshua Project|accessdate = 2007-09-09]
langs=Hindko, Mirpuri, Pashto, Punjabi
religions=Islam (predominantly Sunni), [ [http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=hnd Ethnologue: Hindko, Southern] ] , Christian minority estimated at 2%, [ [http://www.hindko.4t.com/ Hindko Home: Religious Division] ] and small Hindu minority of indeterminate size [ [http://www.junglee.org.in/pk.html Kapoor Family: Prithviraj Kapoor] ] [ [http://www.himalmag.com/2007/january/elsewhere.htm Himal South Asian: Elsewhere] ]
related=Punjabi people, Seraiki people, other neighboring Indo-Aryan peoples

Hindkowans (Perso-Arabic: ہِندکُون) or Pathans (Perso-Arabic: پنجاب پٹھان, Devanagari: पंजाबी पठान, Gurmukhi: ਪੰਜਾਬੀ ਪਠਾਣ) or Hindki (Perso-Arabic: ہِندکی, Devanagari: हिन्दकी) are an Indo-Aryan ethno-linguistic group native to the North-West Frontier Province, Punjab province and Azad Kashmir region of Pakistan and the Jammu and Kashmir state of India.cite web|url = http://www.joshuaproject.net/peopctry.php?rop3=104709&rog3=IN| title = Hindko, Northern speakers in India|publisher = The Joshua Project|accessdate = 2007-09-09] However, an indeterminate number have left the region and now live in other parts of South Asia.cite web|url = http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=story_29-12-2003_pg7_25| title = Peshawarites still remember the Kapoor family|publisher = Daily Times |accessdate = 2007-09-14]

Hindkowans speak Hindko, a Lahnda language that is primary in northern Pakistan. Their northern neighbors, however, speak Pashto, the language of the Afghans.cite web|url = http://encyclopedia.jrank.org/KRO_LAP/LAHNDA_properly_Lahnda_or_Lahin.html| title = LAHNDA |publisher = Encyclopædia Britannica|accessdate = 2008-08-17] In Afghanistan, Hindus still continue to speak Hindko and are referred to as Hindkowan.cite web|url = http://encyclopedia.jrank.org/PAS_PER/HINDKI.html| title = Hindki|publisher = Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition|accessdate = 2007-09-14] cite web|url = http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=hno| title = Ethnologue Report for Hindko|publisher = Ethnologue|accessdate = 2007-09-14]


H.A. Rose, author of "Glossary of the Tribes and Castes of the Punjab and North West Frontier" has defined Hindkowans :

The NWFP Imperial Gazetteer (1905) regularly refers to the language as Hindko, which means "Indian language."cite web|url = http://www.jstor.org/sici?sici=0041-977X(1980)43:3%3C482:HIKAP%3E2.0.CO;2-M&cookieSet=1| title = Hindko in Kohat and Peshawar|publisher = Cambridge University Press|accessdate = 2007-09-09] More than one interpretation has been offered for the term Hindko. Some associate it with Hindustan, others with the Hindu people, and still others with the Sindhu River, which is of course the etymological source of all these terms.cite web|url = http://www.opf.org.pk/almanac/L/languages.htm| title = Grierson Linguistic Survey of India|publisher = Overseas Pakistanis Foundation|accessdate = 2007-09-09]

Long before the partition of India, Grierson, in the "Linguistic Survey of India", employed the term Hindko to mean "the language of Hindus" (viii, 1:34).cite web|url = http://encyclopedia.jrank.org/KRO_LAP/LAHNDA_properly_Lahnda_or_Lahin.html| title = LAHNDA |publisher = Encyclopædia Britannica|accessdate = 2008-08-17] Farigh Bukhari and South Asian language expert and historian Christopher Shackle believe that Hindko was a generic term applied to the Indo-Aryan dialect continuum in the northwest frontier territories and adjacent district of Attock in the Punjab province to differentiate it in function and form from Pashto. Linguists classify the language into the Indic subgroup of the Indo-Iranian languages, which is in turn a subgroup of Indo-European languages.


An estimated 2.4 per cent of the total population of Pakistan speak Hindko as their mother tongue, with more rural than urban households reporting Hindko as their household language.

The largest geographically contiguous group of Hindko-speakers (Hindkowans) is concentrated in the districts of Abbottabad, Haripur, Mansehra and Kaghan valley of Pakistan, while there are a number of geographically isolated speakers of Hindko in cities like PeshawarFact|date=May 2008, Nowshera and Kohat.

People here tend to associate themselves with larger families instead of a language (or caste as it was formerly known) like Awan, Tanoli, Jadoon, Abbasi, and Karlal. People who speak Hindko are referred to by some academics as PathansFact|date=July 2008 probably because many tribes, for example Swatis, Jadoons, and Tanolis who settled in Districts like Abbotabad, Haripur and Mansehra town, adopted Hindko as their first language and had gained political power in these areas during the British rule and also because of many ethnic Pushtun people who speak Hinkdo as their first language in Peshawar and Kohat Fact|date=July 2008. The Hindko speaking people living in major cities Peshawar, Kohat, Mardan are bilingual in Pashto and Hindko. Fact|date=July 2008 Similarly many Pashto speaking people in districts like Mansehra especially in Agror Valley and northern Tanawal (Shergarh), have become bilingual in Pashto and Hindko. Fact|date=July 2008

The speakers of Hindko live primarily in seven districts in NWFP: Mansehra, Mardan, Abbottabad, Haripur, Peshawar, Nowshera and Kohat in NWFP, as well as Attock Rawalpindi districts in the Punjab and parts of Kashmir; Jonathan Addleton states that "Hindko is the most significant linguistic minority in the NWFP, represented in nearly one-fifth of the province's total households." In Abbottabad District 98 per cent of households reported speaking Hindko, in Mansehra District 77 per cent, in Peshawar District 27 per cent, and in Kohat District 10 per cent (1986).Fact|date=July 2008 Testing of inherent intelligibility among Hindko dialects through the use of recorded tests has shown that there is a northern (Hazara) dialect group and a southern group. The southern dialects are more widely understood throughout the dialect network than are the northern dialects. The dialects of rural Peshawar and Talagang are the most widely understood of the dialects tested. The dialect of Balakot is the least widely understood.

In most Hindko-speaking areas, speakers of Pashto live in the same or neighbouring communities (although this is less true in Abbottabad and Kaghan Valley than elsewhere). In the mixed areas, many people speak both languages. The relationship between Hindko and Pashto is not one of stable bilingualism. In the northeast, Hindko is the dominant language both in terms of domain of usage and in terms of the number of speakers, whereas in the southwest, Pashto seems to be advancing in those same areas.

Historically, there were two languages each in upper Afghanistan and lower Afghanistan: Persian and Pashto and Hindko and Pashto. Chach Hazara was a great centre of resistance to the British.

The Gandhara Hindko Board has published the first dictionary of the language and its launching ceremony was held on March 16, 2003. According to a press release, Sultan Sakoon, a prominent Hindko poet, has compiled the dictionary.

Notable Hindkowans

* Dr. Aurangzeb, hassamhur or hussamhur, famous Pakistani writer, columnist and researcher
* Pran Sikhand, "Padma Bhushan", a multiple filmfare awards and BFJA award winning Indian Bollywood actorcite web|url = http://www.hindu.com/mag/2005/01/09/stories/2005010900450400.htm| title = Heroic villain: An informative and entertaining biography of a daredevil Pathan.|publisher = The Hindu|accessdate = 2007-02-23]
* Prithviraj Kapoor, "Padma Bhushan", a noted pioneer of Indian Theatre and of the Hindi film industry [ [http://www.hindu.com/lr/2004/12/05/stories/2004120500020100.htm The Hindu: Mad about theatre] ] [ [http://specials.rediff.com/movies/2006/feb/02slide1.htm Rediff: Bollywood's First Family] ] cite web|url = http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=story_29-12-2003_pg7_25| title = Peshawarites still remember the Kapoor family|publisher = Daily Times |accessdate = 2007-09-14]

ee also


Other Information

*Hindko Land, a thesis presented by Dr Elahi Bakhsh Akhtar Awan at the World
*Hindko Conference held at Peshawar in 2005


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