Other Minority Ethnic Groups in Afghanistan

There are several other smaller ethnic groups scattered around the country, such as the Nuristanis, who live in the remote mountains northeast of Kabul along the Pakistan border. They claim to be descendants of Alexander the Great. Sculptured wooden idols and ancestral images carved by the Nuristanis before they were converted to Islam at sword point in the late nineteenth century are preserved in the Kabul Museum. Some of them are almost life-size and were probably used to honour deceased ancestors and in healing ceremonies. 

Half a million Chahar Aimaqs, whose origin is vague, live west of the Hazarajat in the region between Mazar-i-Sharif, Herat and Bamiyan triangle. Baluchis nomads drive their flocks across the border from their province in southwestern Pakistan. They live mostly in the southern provinces of Helmand, Kandahar, Nimruz and Farah. 

Different communities of Afghan Hindus and Sikhs have different histories. Hindus have always lived in Afghanistan. That's one reason why they call themselves Kandharis and not Multanis and Seraikies. Some of the old temples in the area also point to this theory. The word Kandh in Seraiki means wall. Kandahar used to have many walls. The Helmand river flowing in that area was labeled "Rud-e-hind-wa-sind" by Arabic manuscripts. The language spoken by Afghan Hindus in Kandahar known as Kandhari is probably "Jataki". (Information about the word Kandh, the Helmand river and Jataki is from a Seraiki Linguist by the name of Ijaz Bloach.) There's Chahbra family in Bombay who traces his ancestry back to someone from Kabul from ten generations back. There are many families from India, mostly Sikh, who have the last name of Kandhari.

The Afghan Hindus living in Kabul (Kabulis) are descendents of Hindu Shahis. Ahmad Shah Baba in the 18th century brought few Hindu families from Multan and Sind area for commerce and the community grew and never left Afghanistan. The Sindhi speaking community of Afghan Hindus must have come from Sindh at some point in history. Same would be true of Punjabis and  Shikarpuris. Some Sikhs and Hindus came to Afghanistan from Pakistan after the partition of 1947. Currently Afghan Hindus are living all over the globe   including United States, Canada, Germany, United Kingdom, India, and Pakistan. There is very little told about them in history books. We are not aware of any research done about Afghan Hindus, their origins, culture and languages.

Afghanistan is the land of many ethnic groups, which is why the country has so many different cultures yet they are all call themselves proudly an Afghan.

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