Sunday, October 28, 2012

Hazara History

Hazara History

The Name of Hazara

Some confuse the name of Hazara with the Hazara people that originated in Afghanistan (Hazarajat), claiming that the Hazara came with Timur after his invasion to India. But actual history brings the traces of this name back to Amir Timur[citation needed] who conquered the area and landed an army of thousand (hazar) [citation needed]at the borders as one of his strategy after conquering, the plain of Haripur up to Hasanabdal and Taxila under Karluke tribe of Turks (Muhammad Irshad Khan of Haripur has written (three volumes published in 1976), the History of Hazara Region being part of the State of Pikhlee). The Pikhlee state constituted areas up to Srinagar in Kashmir Hazara Karluke expanded from Taxila Hasanabdal to Mansehra. The area was named as Hazara Karluke and the latter part of the name was dropped. During the British reign, the Gazeteer has quoted the history of the name of Hazara Karluke. Later on the conqueror Hari Singh Nalwa renamed this Hazara Karluke as Haripur. The whole region was not called Hazara until the British rule made it as a district naming it as Hazara.

Imperial Gazetteer of India, v. 13, p. 76: "The origin of the name Hazāra is obscure. It has been identified with Abisāra, the country of Abisares, the chief of the Indian mountaineers at the time of Alexander's invasion. Dr. Stein regards it as derived from Urasā, the ancient name of Pakhli. Another possible derivation is from Hazara-i-Karlugh, or the Karlugh legion, which was settled in this tract by Timur after his invasion of India."

 In spite of Imperial Gazetteer's above-quoted views, modern historians and distinguished Indologists including Dr H. C. Raychaudhury, Dr B. N. Mukerjee, Dr B. C. Law, Dr J. C. Vidyalankar, Dr M. Witzel, Dr M. R. Singh and Prof K. N. Dhar concur with Dr Stein's identification of modern Hazara with the ancient Sanskrit name Urasa .
Evidence from 7th c Chinese traveller Hiuen Tsang  combined with earlier evidence from Mahabharata [4] attests that Poonch and Hazara District of Kashmir had formed parts of epic Kamboja and that the Kamboja rulers of this region observed republican system of government

Hazara Division 1970-2000

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. The division was initially composed of three districts (Abbottabad, Kohistan and Mansehra) but within a few years, Haripur district was spun off from Abbottabad District and Batagram District was spun off from Mansehra District.

Hazara remained a District right up to its conversion into a Division in 1976. In October 1976, Mansehra was given the status of a full fledged District, which consisted of Mansehra and Batagram Tehsils. Subsequently in July 1991, Haripur Tehsil was separated from Abbottabad and made into a District. Thus only the old Tehsil of Abbottabad remained, which was declared as Abbottabad District.
In 2000, administrative divisions were abolished and the fourth tier districts were raised to become the new third tier of government in Pakistan.

Geography and climate:

Hazara is bounded on the north and east by the Northern Areas and Azad Kashmir. To the south are the Islamabad Capital Territory and the province of Punjab, whilst to the west lies the rest of the Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa. The river Indus runs through the division in a north-south line, forming much of the western border of the division. The total area of Hazara is 18,013 km².

Because it lies immediately south of the main Himalaya Range, and is exposed to moist winds from the Arabian Sea, Hazara is the wettest part of Pakistan. At Abbottabad, annual rainfall averages around 1,200 millimetres (47 in) but has been as high as 1,800 millimetres (71 in) , whilst in parts of Mansehra District such as Balakot the mean annual rainfall is as high as 1,750 millimetres (69 in) . Due to its location on the boundary between the monsoonal summer rainfall regime of East Asia and the winter-dominant Mediterranean climate of West Asia, Hazara has an unusual bimodal rainfall regime, with one peak in February or March associated with frontal southwest cloudbands and another monsoonal peak in July and August. The driest months are October to December, though in the wettest parts even these months average around 40 millimetres (1.6 in) .
Due to the high altitude, temperatures in Hazara are cooler than on the plains, though Abbottabad at 1,200 metres (3,900 ft) still has maxima around 32°C (90°F) with high humidity in June and July. Further up, temperatures are cooler, often cooler than the Northern Areas valleys due to the cloudiness. In winter, temperatures are cold, with minima in January around 0°C (32°F) and much lower in the high mountains. Snowfalls are not uncommon even at lower levels.
Hazara lies close to the crossroads formed by the river Indus and the Grand Trunk Road. The Karakoram Highway begins at the town of Havelian and goes north through the division towards China via the Northern Areas.


The population of the Hazara region was estimated to be over 4.5 million in 2005. The total area of Hazara is 18013 km²: See table below.

Hazara region:Statistics
 District ..................Area (km²) ..............Population(Millions)
Abbottabad ...........1802........... ...........    2
Batagram .............1310 ........................1.5
Haripur     ................1763 ........................1
Kohistan ...............7581 ........................0.8


Hazara has one of the major industrial areas of Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa, including Telephone Industry of Pakistan (TIP) and the Hattar Industrial Zone.

The region includes Tarbela Dam, which is the largest earth filled dam in the world and generates most of the hydro electricity generated in Pakistan.
The Karakoram Highway passes through Hazara.
The Pakistan Military Academy at Kakul, near Abbottabad, is where all military officers of Pakistan are trained.
The region has tea plantations and the best grade tobacco in Pakistan, in Mansehra.

Main tribes:

The tribes in Hazara are Tanoli, Karlal, Utmanzai, Jadoon, Rajpoot, Gujjar, Awan, Sheikh, Turk, Durrani,  Dhund Abbasi, Syed (both shiites Tirmizi, Kazmi, Turabi and sunnites Mashwani), Paracha, Swati, Kashmiri, Qureshi, Gakhar, Tareen, Mughal, Tahirkheli, Dilazak, Panni, Bib, Sarrara, Sulemani.
Afghan refugees, although predominantly Pashtun (including the Ghilzai and Durrani tribes), and other smaller groups are found throughout the Division.

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