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Kokkhars of Kot (Fatehpur) India


Kokkhars' tribe of almost now 100, 000 (estimated) people had been living originally in Kasbah Kot of district Fatehpur (U.P.) since 1193 AD which is almost 818 years old. In present times, the population of Kokkhar tribe still living in Kasbah Kot is estimated to be strong 25, 000 (2005) while remaining population is scattered to many parts of India. Most of the original population immigrated to Pakistan while many Indian Kokkhars immigrated to Middle East, North America and other parts of the world for better economic gains. If not underestimated, the Kokkhars population worldwide could be around 300, 000 strong scattered all over.

To state Kokkhars are Jatt /Pashtuns/Tajiks/Hazaras is a folly because they are essentially the descendants of the original Uzbek (Turkish-Afghans) who took India with storm during the reign of Sultan Shahabuddin Mohammad Ghauri (RUA). Many other writers claim Kokkhars (Kot) to be of Turkish origin but the claim is simply substantiated with the fact that Uzbeks are also  Turkish speaking people. Thus Kokkhars (Kot) could be called Turkish as well as Uzbek, both are the same people from Central Asia. Some writers claim Kokkhars to be of Ghauris' dunasty who employed many commanders from Turkish (Uzbek) community. Well, a lot of research is needed to authenticate such a version but every contribution towards integrating Kokkhars and their origin shall be respected. It is worth noting that many CIS countries of today are Turkish which includes Uzbekistan, Turkomanistan, Kazakistan, Ughur (China) and even parts of Kyrghistan.

Other reference indicates that Kokkhars are the decendents of Uzbek Persians who being defeated by the Arabs in Persia took refuge in Punjab where passing army of King Babar recruited them because of their ferosity in warfare. Such a claim indicates the time periond of later centuries after the establishment of Kot in 1193.

Another reference indicates that Kokkhars are a generally referred tribe who are a Rajput clan owing to their ruling status on the Kuh-i-Jud regions of Punjab and have allied many times with various other clans such as Janjua in defeating and pushing back the Ghorid armies from their regions. Such a claim does not and cannot be substantiated for Kokkhars' of Kot.

Khokhars origin is from Central Asia which is what Uzbekistan is of today.

Many Kokkhar elders still living in Kot (Fatehpur) India often call themseves Ajbuk. This word Ajbuk comes from Uzbek which referes to wild warriors reflecting their ferosity in warfare. Rivalry and even armed hostilities have traditionally been common between and within different Kokkhars' groups. Historic and geographic factors have led to the creation and preservation of diversity with Kokkhars'. The relationship between tribe and ethnicity is complex, and all Kokkhars', even all rural Kokkhars, consider themselves Pathan of some sort linking themselves to the army of Sultan Shahabuddin Ghauri of which Khiljees also formed its backbone.

Then Ikhtiyar Uddin Muhammad Khilji (RUA), a military General in the army of Sultan Shahabuddun Ghauri led a military expedition in eastwards of Delhi in about the year 1192 - 93. This is the time (1193) when Aizzeddin Malik Bahbal (RUA) an Uzbek of Turkish-persian dynasty who was part of his army as a commnader conquered Kot (Fathepur) in the vicinity of Kara (manikpur) Allahabad. Aizzeddin Malik Bahbal (RUA) established his garrison in Kot and adjacent area which were later followed by many of his companions.

In addition to social uniformity, many different phenotypes may be found in Kokkhar’s population, including blond-haired, blue eyed Kokkhars; those with darker features and epicanthic folds are said to be all the descendents of Aizzeddin Malik Bahbal (RUA). Although it may be tempting to associate certain physical features with certain ethnic groups, scholars recognize that because all human populations are capable of interbreeding and do so with great regularity, there are more physical differences found within ethnic groups than between them. In general, Kokkhars living in Kot (Fatehpur) are semi white skin, which is short of Caucasian pigment and feature as tall, handsome and very true to their original race from Uzbekistan. But internarriages with other Muslims and Rajputs in India did bring a change in physical form and appearance of the Kokkhars'.

Afghanistan, Uzbekistan and North Western Frontier’s rugged physical environment served to isolate residential communities and to create microenvironments of tough survival tactics. Kot (Fatehpur) is also of similar topography which is situated near Jamuna River but at high altitude giving spectacular scenery of fortified fortress of the old times. Members of different Kokkhar’s groups and Qhandans who reside in different locations must adapt to their own microenvironment, which may result in different kin?  Most Kokkhars use Khan as their sir names while many zealously adopt Kokkhar or Khokhar as their sir names.

Marshall (2006) in his book "World and its People" considers Khiljis as Turkish tribe settled in Afghanistan from where they marched towards India during 12th century as part of Sultan Shahabuddin Mohammad Ghauri's (RUA) military expedition. Later, change of hands in Delhi Sultanate, allowed Jalaluddin Feroz Khilji to become the first Khilji Sultan in 1290. The settlement of Khiljis' tribes men and women in Kot cannot be ruled out as General Ikhtiyaruddin Khilji was in the vicinity of the area during 1192 - 1193. One matter is certain, Kokkhars are the descendents of early Muslim warriors who were rich in culture, valour and ferocity. But with certain degree of appreciation and reservation we mostly agree that Kokkhars are the descendents of Aizzeddin Malik Bahbal (RUA).

Unless and until fresh evidence is available, Kokkhars of Kot are considered of Turkish (Uzbek) origin languished with Uzbek ferocity and intellect who under the influence of Sultan Shahbuddin Ghauri (RUA) with his Khilji (Khilzai) General adopted Persian as their language while setlling in Kot. The rule of Sultan Shahabuddin Gahuri (RUA) and his Khilji dynasty also influenced Kara (Manekpur) Khans where General Ikhtiyaruddin Khilji in 1193 and General Alauddin Khilji in 1295 were stationed, from where Kot is in a close vicinity. If not directly related, Kokkhars of Kot and Khans of Kara have almost same historical and racial links with the inflence of  Sultan Shahabuddin Mohammad Ghauri and his commanders of Turkish-Uzbeks, Turkish-Khiljis and many other Muslim ethnic groups who had settled in Afghanistan (Wa Allohu Alam).

May Almighty Alloh help Kokkhars' to prosper in the religion of Islam, develop Islamic brotherhood, strive to educate and strive to become righteous people by living in peace (Ameen).

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