Hindko language

Hindko language

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Hindko also Hindku, or Hinko, is the sixth main regional language of Pakistan. It forms a subgroup of Indo-Aryan languages spoken by Hindkowans
Hindkowans
Hindkowans or known locally as "Chachi's" are an Indo-Aryan ethno-linguistic group native to the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab provinces of Pakistan...

 in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 and northern India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

, some Pashtun tribes in Pakistan, as well as by the Hindki
Hindki
Hindki is the name given to an ethnic group who inhabit Afghanistan and parts of Pakistan. They are of the Khatri, Arora, and Brahmin caste, and are found all over the country. H. W. Bellew, in his Races of Afghanistan, estimated their number at about 300,000...

 people of Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

. The word "Hindko" has also been interpreted to mean the language of India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 and most probably "Indus" which is the source of etymology for all these words. The term is also found in Greek references to the mountainous region in eastern Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Afghanistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located in the centre of Asia, forming South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. With a population of about 29 million, it has an area of , making it the 42nd most populous and 41st largest nation in the world...

 and northern Pakistan as Καύκασος Ινδικός (Caucasus Indicus, or Hindu Kush
Hindu Kush
The Hindu Kush is an mountain range that stretches between central Afghanistan and northern Pakistan. The highest point in the Hindu Kush is Tirich Mir in the Chitral region of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan.It is the westernmost extension of the Pamir Mountains, the Karakoram Range, and is a...

). The language is spoken in the areas of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (including Hazara), Punjab
Punjab region
The Punjab , also spelled Panjab |water]]s"), is a geographical region straddling the border between Pakistan and India which includes Punjab province in Pakistan and the states of the Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Chandigarh and some northern parts of the National Capital Territory of Delhi...

 (including Attock), and Pakistan Administered Kashmir.

There is no generic name for these people because they belong to diverse ethnicities and tend to identify themselves by the larger families or castes. However the people of the largest group in the districts of Haripur, Abbottabad, Mansehra, Battagram and Kohistan are sometimes recognised collectively as Hazarawal, named after the defunct Hazara Division
Hazara Division
On the dissolution of West Pakistan in 1970, Hazara District and the two tribal agencies were merged to form the new Hazara Division with its capital at Abbottabad...

 that comprised these districts. In Peshawar city they are called Peshawari or "Kharay" by Pashtuns meaning City-dwellers.

History and origin


During the pre-Islamic era in present day Pakistan, the language of the masses was refined by the ancient grammarian Pāṇini, who set the rules of an ancient language called Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Sanskrit , is a historical Indo-Aryan language and the primary liturgical language of Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism.Buddhism: besides Pali, see Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Today, it is listed as one of the 22 scheduled languages of India and is an official language of the state of Uttarakhand...

 which was used principally for Hindu scriptures (analogous to Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 in the Western world). Meanwhile, the vernacular language of the masses, Prakrit
Prakrit
Prakrit is the name for a group of Middle Indic, Indo-Aryan languages, derived from Old Indic dialects. The word itself has a flexible definition, being defined sometimes as, "original, natural, artless, normal, ordinary, usual", or "vernacular", in contrast to the literary and religious...

 developed into many tongues and dialects which spread over the northern parts of South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

. Hindko is believed to be closely related to Prakrit
Prakrit
Prakrit is the name for a group of Middle Indic, Indo-Aryan languages, derived from Old Indic dialects. The word itself has a flexible definition, being defined sometimes as, "original, natural, artless, normal, ordinary, usual", or "vernacular", in contrast to the literary and religious...

. It has undergone very little grammatical corruption, but has borrowed considerable vocabulary from its neighbours, in particular Pashto. It shows close affinity to Punjabi
Punjabi language
Punjabi is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by inhabitants of the historical Punjab region . For Sikhs, the Punjabi language stands as the official language in which all ceremonies take place. In Pakistan, Punjabi is the most widely spoken language...

 and the Lahnda sub-group of Indo-Aryan
Indo-Aryan languages
The Indo-Aryan languages constitutes a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages, itself a branch of the Indo-European language family...

 tongues and can be sub-divided into a northern and southern dialect (the southern dialect shows some similarity with Saraiki
Saraiki language
Saraiki , transliterated as Sirāikī and sometimes spelled Seraiki and Saraiki, is a standardized written language of Pakistan belonging to the Indo-Aryan languages. It is a language spoken in the heart of Pakistan...

 as opposed to Punjabi).
The language is mutually intelligible with other Lahnda dialects such as Pothwari and western Punjabi. this is language of awan's blongs to soon vally, Kushab Punjab Pakistan.

Speakers


The largest geographically contiguous group of Hindko speakers is concentrated in the districts of Abbottabad
Abbottabad District
Abbottabad is a district in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. The district covers an area of 1,969 km with the city of Abbottabad being the principal town...

, Haripur
Haripur District
Haripur is a district in the Hazara region of Khyber-Pukhtunkhwa, province of Pakistan with an altitude of around above sea level. Haripur District has the highest Human Development Index of all the districts in the Hazara....

, Mansehra
Mansehra District
Mansehra District is in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan, an area still unofficially known as the Northwest Frontier. Mansehra district and town are named after Man Singh, a leading general of Mughal Emperor Akbar...

, Attock
Attock District
Attock District is a district in the north-west Punjab Province of Pakistan.The district was created in April 1904 by the merger of Talagang Tehsil in the Jhelum District with the Pindigheb, Fatehjang and Attock tehsils from Rawalpindi District of the Punjab province of British India.Attock...

 of Pakistan, while there are a substantial number of speakers of Hindko in cities like Peshawar
Peshawar
Peshawar is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the administrative center and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan....

, Nowshera, Swabi
Swabi
Swabi is the capital of Swabi District in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. It is located at 34°7'0N 72°28'0E. Its residents are referred to as 'Swabiwaal.'-Geography:...

 and Kohat
Kohat
Kohat is a medium sized town in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. It is located at 33°35'13N 71°26'29E with an altitude of 489 metres and is the capital of Kohat District. The town centres around a British-era fort, various bazaars, and a military cantonment. A British-built narrow gauge...

 of Khyber Pukhtunkhwa province of Pakistan and parts of both Kashmirs.

People who speak Hindko are referred to by some academics as Pathans (not true) probably because of the many Pashtun tribes, for example Shilmani
Shilmani
The Shilmani or Shalmani شلمانى are a Sarbanri Pashtun tribe who are primarily concentrated in the Shalman valley in Khyber agency near Peshawar, North-West Frontier Province, Pakistan, the tribe is also present in different areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan.In Pakistan, they live in Swat, Upper...

/Sulemani, Mashwanis, Jadoons, Tareen, Tanolis, who settled in places like Hazara, adopted Hindko as their first language and gained political power in these areas during the British rule, and also because of many ethnic Pashtuns such as Kakar
Kakar
The Kakar are a Pashtun tribe, with members living in Afghanistan and Pakistan.-Kakar :Kakar Afghan was one of the grandsons of Qais Abdur Rashid. Kakar's father's name was Dani, son of Gharghasht, who was the son of Qais in the Afghan appendix of tribes. According to Afghan and Muslim historians,...

, Durrani
Durrani
Durrani or Abdali is the name of a chief Pashtun tribal confederation in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Originally known by their ancient name Abdali later as Durrani they have been called Durrani since the beginning of the Durrani Empire in 1747. The number of Durranis are estimated to be roughly 16%...

, Popalzai
Popalzai
Popalzai or Popalzay are Durrani Pashtuns.-Origin:According to Hyat Khan's history of Afghanistan, from their progenitor Bor Tareen, otherwise known as Abdal, are descended two main divisions: the Zirak and the Panjpai...

, Sadozai
Sadozai (Pastun tribe)
Sadozai meaning "kings" are the direct lineage of Ahmad Shah Abdali. All the notable Sadozai Durrani Afghan kings and rulers belonedg to the Sadozai tribe....

, Bangash
Bangash
Bangash is the name of a Pashtun clan. The Bangash clan inhabit regions within the Federally Administered Tribal Areas , the Kurram Agency, the Miranzai Valley bordering the Samana Range, Naryab, Tirah, Kohat and Peshawar within the Sarhad province...

, Khattak
Khattak
Khattak or Khatak , is the name of an Afghan tribe. speaking a variant of the Kandahari Pashto. They are accorded the status of being one of the original and true Afghans. The tribe is settled along the western bank of the river Indus from as north upwards as Sammah; modern day Lund Khwar & Sher...

, Yousafzai
Yousafzai
The Yūsufzai is one of the largest Pashtun tribes...

, Ghaznavi and Khogyani, etc. who speak Hindko as their first language in Peshawar and Kohat are Pashtuns by origin, not true. The Hindko speaking people living in major cities Peshawar
Peshawar
Peshawar is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the administrative center and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan....

, Kohat
Kohat
Kohat is a medium sized town in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. It is located at 33°35'13N 71°26'29E with an altitude of 489 metres and is the capital of Kohat District. The town centres around a British-era fort, various bazaars, and a military cantonment. A British-built narrow gauge...

, Nowshera, and Attock
Attock
Attock is a city located in the northern border of the Punjab province of Pakistan and the headquarters of Attock District...

 are bilingual in Pashto and Hindko. Similarly many Pashto speaking people in districts like Abbottabad and Mansehra (especially in Agror Valley and northern Tanawal) have become bilingual in Pashto and Hindko.

The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Imperial Gazetteer (1905) refers to the language as Hindko. More than one interpretation has been offered for the term Hindko. Some associate it with Hindustan
Hindustan
Hindustan or Indostan, literal translation "Land of River Sindhu ", is one of the popular names of South Asia. It can also mean "the land of the Hindus"...

 (as the word may have been used during the medieval Muslim period in the Indian subcontinent
Indian subcontinent
The Indian subcontinent, also Indian Subcontinent, Indo-Pak Subcontinent or South Asian Subcontinent is a region of the Asian continent on the Indian tectonic plate from the Hindu Kush or Hindu Koh, Himalayas and including the Kuen Lun and Karakoram ranges, forming a land mass which extends...

), others with the Indus River
Indus River
The Indus River is a major river which flows through Pakistan. It also has courses through China and India.Originating in the Tibetan plateau of western China in the vicinity of Lake Mansarovar in Tibet Autonomous Region, the river runs a course through the Ladakh district of Jammu and Kashmir and...

 which is of course the etymological source of all these terms. 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
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

 province to differentiate it from Pashto.

Linguists classify the language into the Indic subgroup of Indo-European languages and consider it to be one of the Indo-Iranian languages
Indo-Iranian languages
The Indo-Iranian language group constitutes the easternmost extant branch of the Indo-European family of languages. It consists of three language groups: the Indo-Aryan, Iranian and Nuristani...

 of the area. 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.

Demographics


The speakers of Hindko live primarily in seven districts: Mansehra
Mansehra District
Mansehra District is in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan, an area still unofficially known as the Northwest Frontier. Mansehra district and town are named after Man Singh, a leading general of Mughal Emperor Akbar...

, Abbottabad
Abbottabad District
Abbottabad is a district in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. The district covers an area of 1,969 km with the city of Abbottabad being the principal town...

, Haripur
Haripur District
Haripur is a district in the Hazara region of Khyber-Pukhtunkhwa, province of Pakistan with an altitude of around above sea level. Haripur District has the highest Human Development Index of all the districts in the Hazara....

, Peshawar
Peshawar District
Peshawar is a district in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. Until divisions were abolished as part of local government reforms in 2000 it was part of Peshawar Division. The city of Peshawar, as well as being the provincial capital, is the capital of the district...

, Nowshera
Nowshera District
Nowshera is a district in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province of Pakistan - the principal city is Nowshera. Nowshera District is divided into 47 Union Councils and 5 provincial seats....

, Swabi
Swabi District
Swabi District is the fourth most populous district of the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. It lies between the Indus and Kabul Rivers. The residents are referred to as Swabva'l. The Mandanr Yusufzai subsection of the Yousafzai clan of the Pashtuns form a majority of the population.-...

 and Kohat
Kohat District
Kohat is a district of the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan, Kohat city is the capital of the district. It is inhabited by various Pashtun tribes such as Afridi,Khattaks, Bangash and the Orakzaies. The main language of the district is Pashto....

 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Attock
Attock District
Attock District is a district in the north-west Punjab Province of Pakistan.The district was created in April 1904 by the merger of Talagang Tehsil in the Jhelum District with the Pindigheb, Fatehjang and Attock tehsils from Rawalpindi District of the Punjab province of British India.Attock...

 and Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi District
Rawalpindi is a district of Pakistan in the north of the Punjab province which contains the city of Rawalpindi. The district has an area of . It was part of Rawalpindi Division, until the year 2000 when the division was abolished...

 in Punjab
Punjab (Pakistan)
Punjab is the most populous province of Pakistan, with approximately 45% of the country's total population. Forming most of the Punjab region, the province is bordered by Kashmir to the north-east, the Indian states of Punjab and Rajasthan to the east, the Pakistani province of Sindh to the...

 and parts of Pakistan-administered Kashmir
Pakistan-administered Kashmir
Azad Kashmir borders the Pakistani provinces of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to the west, the Wakhan Corridor of Afghanistan to the north west, the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of People's Republic of China to the north and the Indian-administered state of Jammu and Kashmir, to the east.A...

 including Muzaffarabad
Muzaffarabad
Muzaffarabad is the capital of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, Pakistan. It is located in Muzaffarabad District on the banks of the Jhelum and Neelum rivers...

; Jonathan Addleton states that "Hindko is the linguistic majority in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, represented in nearly one-third of the province's total households." (Pakhtunkhwa referring to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province.) In Abbottabad District 88 per cent of households reported speaking Hindko, in Mansehra District 77 per cent, in Peshawar District 35 per cent, and in Kohat District 40 per cent (1986). 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 Abottabad, it is now being advanced due to usage of Urdu words. It is spoken by the Mashwanis, Jadoons, Tanoli, Mughals, and Awans. In the mixed areas, many people speak both languages. The relationship between Hindko and Pashto is not one of stable bilingualism. In the north east, Hindko is the dominant language both in terms of domain of usage and in terms of the number of speakers, whereas in the south west, Pashto seems to be advancing in those same areas.

The Gandhara Hindko Board has published the first dictionary
Dictionary
A dictionary is a collection of words in one or more specific languages, often listed alphabetically, with usage information, definitions, etymologies, phonetics, pronunciations, and other information; or a book of words in one language with their equivalents in another, also known as a lexicon...

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

Hindko speakers are also found throughout Afghanistan, where they are known as Hindkois.

Literature and writers


The Gandhara Hindko Board is a leading organisation that has been active in the preservation and promotion of the Hindko language and Hindkowan culture since 1993. The board was launched in Peshawar in year 1993 to preserve and promote Hindko language—the second language of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province of Pakistan. It brings out two regular publications-- "Hindkowan" and "The Gandhara Voice" and a number of occasional publications. The board is headed by Professor Dr Zahoor Ahmad Awan of Peshawar city who has to his credit 61 books and publications. The board has published first Hindko dictionary and several other books on a variety of topics. With head office in Peshawar, the organisation has regional offices in other cities of the province where Hindko language is spoken and understood. The organisation has arranged a number of mega events to raise awareness among the Hindkowans about the importance of their language and culture. The board seeks respect for and due attention to all the languages spoken in Gandhara.

In 2003 the Gandhara Hindko Board published first a Hindko dictionary which was compiled by a prominent language researcher from Abbottabad, Sultan Sakoon. The board published a second more comprehensive Hindko dictionary in 2007 prepared by Dr Elahi Bakhsh Awan of the University of London
University of London
-20th century:Shortly after 6 Burlington Gardens was vacated, the University went through a period of rapid expansion. Bedford College, Royal Holloway and the London School of Economics all joined in 1900, Regent's Park College, which had affiliated in 1841 became an official divinity school of the...

. He is the author of Sarzamin e Hindko, and Hindko Sautiyat. His three booklets on Hindko Phonology
Phonology
Phonology is, broadly speaking, the subdiscipline of linguistics concerned with the sounds of language. That is, it is the systematic use of sound to encode meaning in any spoken human language, or the field of linguistics studying this use...

 were published by the University of Peshawar
University of Peshawar
The University of Peshawar is a public sector university in the city of Peshawar, Pakistan. The university was established in October 1950 by Mr...

 in the late 70's.

The Idara-e-Faroghe Hindko based in Peshawar is another body that is promoting the Hindko language. Riffat Swati and Aurangzeb Ghaznavi are main people of this organisation. The Idara has published the first Hindko translation of the Quran by Haider Zaman Haider and the first Ph.D. thesis on Hindko by Dr E.B.A.Awan. A monthly Magazine Faroogh is also published regularly from Peshawar under supervision of Aurangzeb Ghaznavi. In Karachi Dr. Syed Mehboob is also working for the promotion of Hindko language. Dr. Syed Mehboob also is the member of Qaumi Flahi Forum an umbrella working for the promotion of Hindko languages under the guidance and supervision of Riffat Akbar Sawati " The Madre Hindko".
Dr. Syed Mehboob is a prominent columnist, researcher and journalist who published more than 550 articles, and is also an author of three books.His recent essay "noor e Muhammad nal dowen jahan roshan hen" published in monthly Farogh Peshawar is widle liked and lauded by Hindkowans.

Many organisations like Bazm-e-Ilm-o-Fun Abbottabad and Halqa-e-Yaraan Shinkyari are contributing in their own way to the cause of promoting Hindko language and literature. Mr. Asif Saqib, Prof. Sufi Abdur Rasheed, Col. Fazal-e-Akbar Kamal, Mr. Sharif Hussain Shah, Prof. Muhammad Farid, Prof. Yahya Khalid, Mr. Nazir Kasalvi and Muhammad Hanif have contributed a lot in this regard. Mr. Sultan Sakoon has written the First Hindko dictionary that has been published by Gandhara Hindko Board. Mr Sultan Sakoon stands out for his literary contribution as he is a prolific writer and his books including those on Hindko proverbs and Hindko riddles have been published.

Hindko poets


Some of the prominent Hindko poets are:
  • Professor Dr Elahi Bakhsh Awan,
  • Haider Zaman Haider,
  • Sultan Sakoon
  • Sabir Hussain Imdaad,
  • Sheen Shaukat
  • Zaffar Iqbal Athar
  • Mohammad Ziauddin
  • Ahmad Nadeem Awan
  • Sikandar Hayat Sikandar
  • Mr. Asif Saqib,
  • Afzal Chishti
  • Raza Hamadani
  • Bushra Farukh
  • Qudsia Qudsi
  • Hassam Hurr
  • Hilal Jamid
  • Iftikhar Tashna
  • Aslam Taraq
  • Khawaja Yaqoob Akhtar
  • Maqbool Ejaz Ejazi
  • Malak Arshad Hussain
  • Masoom Shah Masoom
  • Sabeeh Ahed
  • Rani Bano
  • Sadaq Saba
  • Saeed Gilani
  • Zaffar Naveed Jani
  • Prof. Sufi Abdur Rasheed,
  • Col. Fazal-e-Akbar Kamal,
  • Mr. Sultan Sakoon,
  • Mr. Sharif Hussain Shah,
  • Prof. Muhammad Farid,
  • Prof. Yahya Khalid,
  • Mr. Nazir Kasalvi,
  • Muhammad Hanif,
  • Ahmad Ali {Khayali}
  • Shoaib shahid
  • Prof. Bashir Sooz
  • Muhammad Hanif
  • Ahmad Hussain Mujahid
  • Mohammed Khan (NCSU)
  • Prof. Dildar Dil Azem

Hindko music


Shakeel Awan,Hussain Baksh,Munir Awan, Naeem Hazarvi, Shahzad Awan, Tariq Hazarvi, SanamAfreen
Saeed Hazara,
Afshan Zebi
......
Manzoor Hussain Basir'

Hindko charbaita


  • Dr Elahi Bakhsh Akhtar Awan. Author Hindko Sautiyat, Hindko Lisaniat, Hindko=Urdu Dictionary