Ahmadzai

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Subtribes of the Ahmadzai Pashtun tribe.

Aḥmadzai ("descendants of Aḥmad"; also spelled Ahmedzai) is a Pashtun tribe. There are many separate and distinct clans, sub-clans, tribal fractions, large families etc. that trace their ancestry to different Aḥmads.[1]

Origins[edit]

The Ahmedzai are a distinct tribe from the similarly-named community of Afghanistan.[2] They form one of the two major branches of the Wazir tribe, with the other being the Utmanzai of North Waziristan Agency.[3][4] The common ancestor of the Ahmadzai and Utmanzai is the eponymous Wazir, who is also ancestor to the Mehsuds who have since taken a distinct and divergent path. Through Wazir, the tribes trace their origins to Karlanri and thence to the founder of the Pashtun lineage, Qais Abdur Rashid.[5]

The tribe are Sunni Muslims of the Hanafi sect, although not particularly strict in observance of their religious beliefs. It is possible that some have come under the influence of the Deobandi sect, followers of which have in recent years become active in areas where the tribe lives.[6]

Location[edit]

The Ahmadzai were originally settled in the Birmal Valley area of modern day Afghanistan. Today, they inhabit Pakistan and are primarily a.pastoral community that earn a living from the rearing of sheep. Many Ahmadzai migrate between areas according to the seasons. The majority are found in Bannu District and around one-third live in the South Waziristan Agency, a Federally Administered Tribal Area of Waziristan. The North and South Waziristan agencies together form this region, which derives its name from the Wazir supra-tribe.[6]

Unlike the Utmanzai, the Ahmadzai generally co-exist peacefully with their Mehsud cousins. Many head men from the two tribes are connected by marriage.[6][7]

Notable people[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Kieffer, Ch. M. "AḤMADZĪ". Encyclopædia Iranica (Online Edition ed.). United States: Columbia University. 
  2. ^ "Ethnic Identity in Afghanistan". Naval Postgraduate School. Retrieved 6 December 2013. 
  3. ^ Hasnat, Syed Farooq (2011). Pakistan. ABC-CLIO. p. 164. ISBN 9780313346972. 
  4. ^ Gul, Imtiaz (2010). The Most Dangerous Place: Pakistan's Lawless Frontier. Penguin UK. p. 44. ISBN 9780141962986. 
  5. ^ Ahmed, Akbar (2013). The Thistle and the Drone: How America's War on Terror Became a Global War on Tribal Islam. Brookings Institution Press. ISBN 9780815723790. 
  6. ^ a b c Tribe: Ahmadzai Wazir. Naval Postgraduate School. 
  7. ^ Tribe: Utmanzai Wazir aka Utmanzai. Naval Postgraduate School.