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Who are these Kamboj people



“Parts of Nuristan (Kafirstan) formed a portion of Greek satrapy of the Paropamisadae in the fourth and third c B.C. The People were then called Kambojas and described as of mixed Indo-Iranian descent. Possibly they occupied a much larger area then and were gradually forced from central Afghanistan into their present mountains by the Moslem onslaught. One of their principal tribes is still called Kam or Kamtoz…”

“The Moslem appellation of Kafirs is mentioned in 1020 A.D. by the historians of Mahmud of Ghazni. The other references to them were made by writers in the fouteenth, fifteenth and sixteenth centuries and during the Moghul period. In 1839, the Kafirs sent a deputation to Sir William Macnaghten in Jalabad, claiming relationship with fair skinned British troops who had invaded the country.”

“Historically, the Afghans are first mentioned by name (Avagana) by early sith century Indian astronmer Varaha Migira in his Brahat Samhiti. A little later, the Chinese traveler Hiuen Tsang mentions a tribe of A-po’kien, located in the Sulayman mountains. The earliest Moslem works mentioning them are the Hudud al’Alam (982 A.D.), the Tarikh-I-Yamini and those of Biruni. The Indian appellation Pathan does not occur till 16th c, but the change into Pathan (from plural of Pushtun; Pushtana) indicates that it must have been used at a much earlier date. Biruni places the Afghans in western frontier mountains of India. No Afghan settlement west of Ghazni is mentioned by early authors. The origin and early history of westernmost Pushtun tribe, the Abdalis remains obsecure” [op cit, p 40]

cf: “Mahmud Gazhni had to fight with ‘Kafirs’ Afghans living in the Sulayman mountains ranges. In the war between Prithvi Raj Chohan and Mohamad Dhori, the Afgans fought on both sides…This obviously proves that all Afghans did not embrace Islam yet…..(Afghan Immigration in early middle ages: article contributed by K. S. Lal in the book “Studies in asian History, p 21).

Cf: “In warfare at the end of twelfth century between the Moslems and Hindus, Afghans are represented as fighting on both sides, which suggests that although legend places their conversion in the early Islamic period, they had not yet all been converted to Islam. Repeatedly, they are referred to as a rebellious and turbulent people. Timur considered them (Kafirs of Sulayman) brigands and is reported to have ravaged their strongholds ain the Sulayman mountains. Their reputation as a fierce race of mountain robbers and occasionally, soldiers of fortune turned to fame with rise to power in India of the Afghans adventurer, Daulat Khan Ludi of Ludi clan of Ghilzai”………. [ibid, pp 40-41]

“In physical type, most Kafirs are above average height, with slender build, hair ranging from straight to wavy and skin color described as resembling that of residents of Punjab and presumably similar to Afghans. The nose is slender and straight or sometimes acquiline in shape. …..Only Presungeli are noticeably different, powerfully built, with heavy low forehead, close-set eyes, a broader nose, a receding chin, a darker skin color—and it is possible that the Presungeli represent the aboriginal inhabitants of the area”

“The Kafir tribal structure as described by Robertson was similar to that of other tribes in Afghanistan, but in addition to the tribesmen there were two non-tribal classes, the poor freemen and the slaves. The slaves were ususlly the war captives, although they might be purchased from other Kafirs. House slaves lived with family which owned them and enjoyed a higher status than did the artisan slaves who were treated much as members of occupational castes were in India. All craftmen among the Kafirs—such as wood carvers, bootmakers, weavers were slaves, as were drummers. Blacksmiths were considered of lower caste than other slaves, but all slaves were impure and were prohibited from approaching the shrine or house of a priest…..”

“One receives status in the tribe by killing Moslems. And the man who killed four or five Moslems earned the the right to waer a special kind of shawl. In raids upon Moslems, with whom there were contant blood feuds, the killer took an ear or scalp lock for a trophy in addition to whatever booty could be seized. When a raiding party returned home, a victory dance was held. There were usually no feuds within the tribe but if a fight did start, it was the duty of all witness to intervene at once. In the event a man was killed, his murderer had the choice either to pay compensation or go into exile”. (Afghanistan, its people, its Society, its culture, 1962 Donald N. Wilber, p 50, 51, 311)


Scott Robertson spent several years with Kafirs in Kafirstan in late 19th c . He resaeched the various Kafir tribes of Kafirstan. He put his findings in a book called “The Kafirs of Hindukush”. The text refers to the times when these people were still non-believers (so-called Kafirs). In 1895, their leaders were duplicitously taken prisoners and the so-called Kafirs were forecibly converted to Islam by Afghan Chief Amir Abdur Rahman Khan of Kabol. After conversion, they were re-named as Nuris (enlightened ones). Their province was thence afterwards named as Nuristan (land of light). The story Sir George Scott Robertson narrates relates to pre-islamization of Kafirstan.


States Scott Robertson: “….Thus the upper part of Bashgul Valley is called Katirgul (Lutdeh in Chitrali, or Kamtoz in Pushtu), the middle part Muman (Madugal in Chitrali) and the lower part Kam (Kamdesh in Chitrali or Kamoz in Pushtu)” [ Kaffirs of Hindukush, 1896, p 71, Sir George Scott Robertson, K.C. S. I.)

The Kafir Tribes: (as of 1890):

(1)Katirs (consisting of Kamoz Kafirs, Kti or Katawar Kafirs, Kulam Kafirs, Ramgulis Kafirs)

(2)Siaposh ( Kams/Kamtoz Shiaposh, Muman/Madugul Siposh, Kashtoz Shiaposh, Jezhis Kafirs, Gourdesh Siaposh)

(3)Sfedposh/Lalposh ( Wais, Ashkuns, Presuns/Virons)

The above was the general classification which Scott Robertson did in 1890.

This classification was based on colour of robes which these tribes would wear in those times. Note that this classification does not divide the Kafirs on ethnic basis. Ethnically, the Katirs and Siaposh tribes are said to belong to one ethnic group according to Sir Robertson. The Wai Kafirs he describes more closer to the Greeks. The Presuns/Virons (of Sfedpiosh general group) and Gourdesh (from Siaposh general group) are from ancient tribes which are non-Aryans according to George Scott.

The important subtribes of Kam or Kam people are: Utahdari, Demidari, Garakadari, Sukadari, Bilezhedari, Waidari, Lanandari, Kanardari, Gutkechdari and Batardari Kams. The first six are most important.

The Chief clans of the Katirs (Kamoz Kafirs) are:
Jannahdari, Barmodari, Shakldari, Mutadawadari, Charedari, Shtukdari and Sowadari. The Jannahdari are wealthiest and overshadow all other Karirs (Kamoz) subtribes.

States Sir Scott Robertson: “The Katirs(Kamtoz), the Kams (Kamoz), and the Wais* are mainly descended from ancient Indian population of East Afghanistan who refused to embrace Islam in 10th c A.D. and fled for refuge from victorious Moslems to hilly countries of Kafirstan. The Jezis and the Aroms (Gourdesh) of Siaposh group are the remanents of other races who were living in these hilly regions before the advent of above three subtribes. They were either driven away or were amalgamated into the above three invading tribes. The Presuns of Sfedposh are the aboriginal (non-Aryan) race”. (op cit p 157)

*Note: George Scott Robertson describes the Wais Kafirs as having some glimpses of ancient Greek cultural influence though.

Investigators like Scott Robertson, Richard F. Strands etc have analyzed all the Kafir tribes of Kafirstan. They all agree that Kams of Kamdesh are though comparatively small in number, but because of their unity, they are the virtual kings of Bashgul valley. Again and again, they have been described as the trouble makers in the Kafirstan. “Inspite of their being in microscopic minority as compared to the Katir , Gourdesh, Madugul, Wai, Ashkun, Presun tribes of the Hindukush Kafirs, the Kam tribes are the virtual kings of the entire Bashgul valley area. This is simply because of unity among Kam their tribes”, writes Sir George Scott Roberstson

“As there is no rock inscriptions, no ancient books, nor any literature of any kind to be found in Kafirstan, and as the traditions of the people themselves give such small help in forming any opinion concerning their origin, the only hope which remains that the Kafirs may be eventually assigned their proper place in general history of the world is from a comparative study of their language, their manners and customs, and their religious ceremonies, as well as from their cranial measurements, and other anthrometric observations.; that they have no admixture of Tarter (Mongol/Turkic) blood seems obvious; that they came from west, at least the great majority of them, is their own fixed idea, and more is more than probable. If there be point of resemblence between the present Kafirs and the ancient Greek sacrificial observances, and if certain of their domestic utensils…such for instance, as Wai wooden dish stand—may seem to be fashioned in Grecian mould, it may fairly be conjectured that some of the Kafir tribes, at any rate, are still INFLUENCED, by Greek colonists of Alexander; that these Kafirs having never been under the rule of Muslemans, may possibly represent some of the people of Eastern Afganistan, as they were before the victorious Moslem defeated and converted them to Islam” (op cit p 161-162)

The Wai and Ashkun Kafirs as a tribe are either from ancient Yavanas or are probably under the cultural influence of those (Yavana=Greek) people who have been described to be living as neighbors to Kamboja people per Asoka's Rock Edicts (R.E. V: Yona-Kamboja-Gandharanam; R.E. XIII: Yone-Kambojesu …R.E. XIII) .Or of the Ramayana…. Kamboja-Yona sawya (Ramayana Kishakanda Kanda 43/11), ….cf: Yone-Kamboj-Gandharam (of Mahabharata) and Yone-Kambojesu (of Pali religious texts etc.).

With reference to the above said Wai Kafirs who are described by Scott Robertson as being under some subtle ancient cultural Greek influence, we personally see in them the reflection of those Kambojas of northern Archotia/Kandhar (Central Afghanistan) who were neighbors to the Yanvanas of Southern Archotia (cf: Shar-I-Kuna Inscriptions in Greek/Aramaic scripts). Thus most possibly, the three major tribes of the Kafirs (Katirs, Kams, Wais) have all probably retreated from Kandhar. Some of them were under Greek cultural influence for obvious reasons being their long time neighbors in Kandhar, they had imbibed certain Grecian manners, customs and some linguistic influences from their neighbors.
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Old 11-24-2001, 12:18 AM
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“Thus most possibly, the three major tribes of the Kafirs (Katirs, Kams, Wais) have all probably retreated from Kandhar. Some of them were under Greek cultural influence for obvious reasons…being their long time neighbors in Kandhar, they had imbibed certain Grecian manners, customs and some linguistic influences from their neighbors”

“Thus most possibly, out of these three major tribes of the Kafirs (Katirs, Kams, Wais) the Wai tribe probably retreated from Kandhar. They were under Greek cultural influence for obvious reasons…being a long time neighbors of Yavanas in Kandhar. They had imbibed certain Grecian manners, customs and some linguistic influences from their long time friends and neighbors.”

The inadvertent error is regretted.


“The Kam Kafirs are the most famous tribe of Kafirstan………..The Kams and the Wais tribes are the fircest and most intractable of all the Kafir tribes while of those two, the Kams (Kamoz) are the most to be dreaded for their military prowess……… Admirers of form would delight in Kafirs in their own country. They give such an impression of gracefulness and strength when once the eye has become used to the vile robes they wear…As might be expected of a wild, excitable people, their gestures are highly dramatic….their pluck is immense…Their countenances are of distinct Aryan type, the nose, as a rule, being particularly well-shaped. The Kam and wais contain the handsomest people I have seen, especially the Wais. ……In the highest form, the men have well-shaped heads, good features and quite steady eyes….The cast of feature is grave, one might almost say intellectual….One of the greatest surprises in store for a traveller who has only seen Kafirs out of their own country is observe their wonderful sense of personal dignity…their solemn manner and proude bearing are remarkable. …they are merry and selfrespecting… A Kafir, wild and independent as he appears at first sight, has a strange reluctance to act on his own responsibility on any important doubteful question. He loves to go off with his fellows and noisily discuss what should be done. …The Kafirs are extremely social….With a single Kafir it is easy to do as you please, provided you do not transgress his unwritten code of manners or run athwart his national customs….A kafir in his own way is a model of politeness…Among the Kafirs, the expenditure on food supplies in entertaining guests must be great…..Kafirs, both by nature and necessity, are most hospitable… Kafirs are very quarrelsome among themselves. It is absolutely important for a man to take a quarrel up on the instant to assert his manhood.. I have never seen any gathering of Kam or Katir men without no seeing one or two rows…. Hardly a day passes witjout a disturbance somewhere, due to this cause….But if a quarreling is manly thing, peacemaking is sacred virtue among the Kafirs. Men, boys and even dogs are separated at the first indication of a probable fight. ….The Kafirs are extremely quick in their movements that an instantaneous quarrel is followed by a lightning-like onslaught, and so one or the other of the combatants often gets more or less hurt, but there is never time for a second blow. The fighters are at once seized, hurled aside and separated or thrown down and literally set upon the by standers. Any one who would not lend a hand in stopping a village fight will be looked upon and would consider himself a mean and unworthy..……It is as natural for a Kafir to thieve as it is for him to eat. The children are encouraged to steal….The villagers think it only natural to thieve……..The Kafirs are never rough and cruel to animals….There is nothing like religious tolerance among the Kafirs….The Kafir always cling to his blood…Kafirs are extremely avengeful people. Even if a Kafir slave-boy sold out of his tribe by the members were executed, say for murder, in Chitral, he would be avenged by his tribe.…. Their inter-tribal hatred is so immense that it often entirely deadens their political foresight… ….Although a Kafir thinks it is virtue and in accordance with religion to kill Musalmans and give himself the benefit of any doubt about their enemies; although in his raids into hostile territories whether Kafir or Musleman, he spares neith men nor women, although he holds human life as of very little account., and although, in hunting, he may appear to brutal methods of getting the game, he is not a cruel man by nature. ….Family affections in Kafirstan are very strong. Some tribes are in the habit of selling little girls, and money will tempt some men even to sell children who are nearly related to them, but as a general rule, it is the offering of slaves that they dispose of most readily… To any one who considers how wild he is, his comparative freedom from brutality is astonishing…Kafirs are wonderfully brave…In view of the inferior nature of their weapons, they achieve wonders…the chief reason the Kafirs have been able to maintain their independence is the gallantry, reckless bravery and devotion with which they defend themselves…Kafirs are splendidly loyal to one another (friends of friends) and are accustomed to acts of self-sacrifice…a Kafir will never desert his friends in lurch even at the price of their own life…In the Kafir opinion, a really fine character, what he emphatically calls a” good man” must possess the following attributes: He must be successful homicide, a good hillman, ever-ready to quarrel, and of an amorous disposition, a good dancer, a good shot, a good stone-quoit player and rich….Kafirs can be easily bribed, and will do almost any thing for money, but their natural natural boastfulness compels them them to publish the fact that they have have been clever enough to wrest money from stranger..when the cupidity of their friends and relations is at once inflamed, reason is thrown into the winds, and the gravest difficulties then arise….It is probable that there is no single tribe of Kafirs at the present day which is at peace with all other tribes. Some of their wars, if the wars they can be called, have continued for generations…For instance, that between the Kams and the most western Katirs, the Ramgulis (Kamoz) is said to have lasted over hundred years….A man of any position who has been killed must be atoned for by blood…. For one’s honor and that of one’s family, come what may, one must kill the murderer in front of the dead man’s coffin… in that case, the Kafirs can not ever ever be bribed for whatever money….. Kafirs are theoretically all equal……..(2, 3, 166, 167,168, 181, 184, 185,188,169,190, 191, 194, 197, 432, 433, 560, 562, 563, op cit).

As said above, "A man of any position who has been killed must be atoned for by blood ........For one’s honor and that of one’s family, come what may, one must kill the murderer in front of the dead man’s coffin… in that case, the Kafirs can not ever ever be bribed for whatever money….."


“...A man of any position who has been killed must be avenged and atoned for by blood. In 1891 Kam Kafirs were hunting some Janul Mosalmans down the Kunar Valley. Jandulis ran for shelter to Mehtar’s (Tribal Chief’s) new fort at Nursut, which was garrisoned by Chitrali soldiers. The fort door was banged to just as the last Musalman closely followed by leading Kam Kafir, passed through. It was a near shave, and the Chitrali at the gate had to fire, killing the Kafir, to keep him entering the gate.”

“Time passed until in 1893, I found myself at Chitral an a special mission from Government of India to the Mehar Nizam-ul-Mulk. One day a messanger came to me from a well known Kam Kafir named Shyok, who sent word that, as an old friend of mine, he was anxious not to cause trouble of any kind in the then critical state of affairs at Chitral, but that the man who had been killed at Nari fort was a member of his (Shyok) family and although the slain was an individual of no tribal importance, yet Shyok must a Chitrali ti kill. In the circumstances, to prevent complications and particularily out of friendship with me, Shyok was prepared to accept any Chitrali..a slave even, but a Chitrali of some kind or other he must have. As I knew Shyok to be remarkable for cupidity (greed) even among the Kafirs, it seemed as if there should be little difficulty in settluing the matters by paying him ransom for the slain person; but broaching the subject to my Kafir son Shermalik, who had been sent to see me as Shyok’s ambassador, he remarked: “You know Shyok well. There is nobody in Kafirstan so greedy and avaricious as he is, yet if you offer him a Lakh of rupees (wow a Lakh in 1896!!!!), he can not accept it. For his honor’s sake, he must have a Chitrali to kill in front of the dead man’s coffin in Kafirstan. All my arguments and persuasions failed. Shermalik said that the Mehar (Chief of Chitral) would understand the situation and would readily supply a victim if advised to do so…How the affair was settled I do not know. Probably Shyok or some of his friends caught some unfortunate Chitrali and killed him and Mehar winked at the deed, if he heard of it at all….......” (Kafirs of Hindukush, 1896, pp 562-562, Scott Robertson).

“All the neighboring Musalman tribes have intense hatred of Kafirs, with the exception, perhaps of the Kunar valley Gabar villagers and Minjanis. This does not arise, I am convinced, from religious prejudices…as much as from the injuries the Musalmans have had from the Kafirs through the long ages. Similarily, the Kafirs love to dance to Gish (their god of war) after killing Musalmans, but their hatred of Afghans is far more than religious fanaticism. Even in times of remote past, it has kept the two people at bitter feud. Both Kafirs and Afghans are brigands by instinct, and both are careless of human life. Perhaps Kafirs are the worst of the two in both respects, but the Afghan makes the account more than even by his added perfidy and cunning.” (op cit p 567-568).

“When attacked by foreigners, who are always armed with much better fire-arms and other weapons than the Kafirs possess, the latter usually adopt purely a defensive tactics. They hold positions, from little ambuscades, and so forth but are always prepared to fall back before the superior strenghth of the enemy. They seek to cut off stragglers and harass the invaders in every possible way. Then, when the enemy, from accumulated lossess, lack of supplies or hopelessness of further successes begins to retreat, the lightfooted Kafirs attack hin on all sides like a swarm of hornets. Dogged resistance is turned into furious bravery. A Kafir never fights so well as when the advantage is on his side. He plays a wining game splendidly. Each man tries to emulate the traditionsal heroes of his tribe and will prerform the grandest deeds to gain the admiration of his fellows. I was told of the Kafir man Shyok that on one occasion he dashed single-handedly into a group of the enemy, stabbed to death several people right and left and then escaped uninjured. He is a man of enormous strength and ispite of his weight, he is as active as a leopard” (op cit p 567).

“Civilization abruptly fell aspleep centuries ago in Kafirstan….and still is in a dormant state......... These Kafirs constantly become degenrated until their tribal headquarters are merely a robbers’ nests…….. If it were not for their splendid courage, their domestic affections, and their overpowering love for freedom, these Kafirs would indeed have been a hateful people..........In other respects, they are what they have been made by uncontrollable circumstances. For them, the world has not grown softer as it has grown older. Its youth could not be crueler than its present maturity, but if they had been different, they would have been enslaved centuries ago. ……Their present ideas, and all the associations of their history and their religion, are simply bloodshed, assassinations, and blackmailing; yet they are not savages. Some of them have the heads of Philosopers and statesmen. Their features are Aryans and their mental capabilities are great, their love for decoration, their carvings, their architecture…. all point to a time when they were higher in the himan scale than they are of a present. They never could be brutal savages, like some of the African races….because they are of different type…. but they are as degraded in many respects as it is possible for this type ever to become.....” (op cit p 162-63).

NOTE: Numerically, the Katir/Kamtoz (over 30 thousand) are more important than all the remaining tribes of Kafirstan put together. The Kamoz Kafirs are numberd only about 15-20 thousand out of total of little over 0.1 million population of Nuristan.. By virtue of their unity among themselves, militarily, the Kam kafirs are the most predominant group in whole of Nuristan. George Scott Robertson styles the Kams as the virtual kings of Bashgul valley. They have been described by several investigators as the persistent 'trouble makers' in Kafirstan/Nuristan.

COMMENT: The Great guerilla Commander and Hero, Anwar Amin, who had played a crucial role in an organnized and sustained resistance against the Soviets and who was mainly reponsible in bringing them to their very knees as also ultimately shaking the vast Soviet Empire too its very foundations, belonged to the famous Kam (Kamoz) tribe of Nuristan.(Richard F. Strand).
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Old 11-24-2001, 03:59 AM
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Default PART V The Katawer Kafirs m


The Katawer Kafirs mentioned by Sharifudin (Temur's historian) were the ancestors of the modern Katirs, who are a numerous branch of the Shiaposh Kafirs currently living north-east of Alishang. This shows that the Katawers and Shiaposh Kafirs were more wide spread and living more openly during the times of Mongolian king Timur. Over the time, their area has shrunk, which means that the Kafirs living towards farther areas of Panjshir have in the meantime become Mohhamadan converts. All Kafirs except the Presun, Madugal, Kashtan and Istrat/Gourdesh tribes are described by several investigators as belonging to Indo Aryan class, having sharp features, brownish and bluish eyes, slender, straight or some times aquiline noses, dark or brownish or many times blond hair, fair colors and well built and tall statures. The Wai and Ashkun Kafirs who seem related to each other have been decribed by some scholars as possibly having Greek blood or are described as the descendents of Greek soldier colonies of the post- Alexandra era. G. Robert Scott describe the Wais/Ashkuns as being under the Greek influence of yore. The Presun Kafirs have been described as the aboriginal inhabitants of Kafirstan, with Dravidian features and blood, who seem to have successfully resisted the onslaughts of the retreating Kafir tribes and with whom these Presun Kafirs seem to have settled on equal terms.

Several investigators and scholars have established that Kams and Katirs tribes are descendents of ancient Kambojas. To gather, they number about 50000 out of over 100,000 population of Nuristan. These two tribes form most militant and dominant tribes of Nuristan. The Kam tribe which is the most united tribe of Nuristan also is the most dominating of all Nuristani tribes. The Kams and the Katir tribes, to all probability, are the descendents of the Kapisha KAMBOJAS WHO HAD CROSSED HUNDUKUSH from Badakshan and spread into the Paropamisadean region in the pre-Buddhist days. Kam’s current headquareter is Kamdesh in Bashgul valley in Nuristan.

Probably, the Wais are also from the ancient Kambojas of Kandhar, who are said to have been Yavana’s neighbors (Shar-I-Kuna Inscriptions of king Ashoka). They were probably the Repulican Kambojas who had earlier moved to Kandhar in later epic times and had set up their independent Repulic in Archosia. During Alexandra times, a part of their territory was taken and colonized by Yavanas (Archosia). It has been suggested by scholars that the south side of Archosia may have been controlled by Yavanas while the north side probably remained in possession of the Kambojas during and after the Maurya kings. Ashoka’s Shar-I-kuna Inscription of Kandhar was located at the coterminous (common) boundary of Kamboja and Yavana settlements in Archosia [The Problems of Ancient India, 2000, K. D. Sethna, p 3-4, The Location of Kamboja, Purana Vol IV, No 1, Jan 1964, K. D. Sethna). Wais Kafirs seem to be the descendents of these Archotian Kambojas who had been in intimate cultural contact with Yavanas for long long time. During Moslem onslaughts, some of these Kamboja clans had receded back to their blood kithmen (Kapisha Kambojas) living in Paropamisadean region since ancient times. The retreating tribe was the so-called Wais Kafirs of Scott Robertson. The Katirs and the Kams tribes, their blood Kithmen, to all probability, had been living in Paropamisafea region since earliest time.

The Kashtan and Istrat Kafirs are described as the slave progeny of the tribal people who were overpowered and enslaved by the Kams, Katirs tribes who had receded from frontlines of Parpamisadean territoty into the interior mountainous defiles and occupied the present valleys in the 10/11th century.





Invasion of Timur the KAMBOJA tribes of Kapistan (Modern Nuristan…Afganistan) as also other tribes of northern India: [Based on Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, 398-477)

“…..Before Timur launched his Indian expedtion, information reached him that his grandson Pir Muhammad, the governor of Kabul, Qandhar, Gazni and other neighboring regions had already sent an expeditions against India, which crossed the river Sindhu, captured Uch and besieged Multan. Timur, on his part, started from Samarqand early in A.D. 1398 (March or April). When he reached Afghanistan, a large number of Muslims, both high and low, complained to him of the ill-treatment which they constantly received at the hands of the infidel of Kator and Siyaposh and asked for his protection which was readily granted” [ref: History and Culture of Indian People, The Delhi Sultanate, p 117 Dr R. C. Majumdar, Dr A. D. Pusalkar, Dr Munshi].

“The infidel Kators and the Siyaposhes exact tribute and blackmail every year from us who are true believers, and if we fail in the least of our settled amount, they slay our men and carry our women and children into slavery” (ref: Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, p 400 ).

SOME COMMENT BY THE AUTHORS OF THE BOOK: “It appears that the Muslims complaints practically amounted to the system of distraint for realizing the arrears in rent or tribute (settled amount). The degree of severity was naturally exaggerated by them, particularly as it was imposed by the infidels on the true belivers. This aspect the case clearly emerges both from the address of the Muslims and the reply of Timur: “On hearing these words. The flame of my zeal for Islam, and my affection for my religion, began to blaze “[ref: History and Culture of Indian People, The Delhi Sultanate, p 123, Dr R. C. Majumdar, Dr A. D. Pusalkar, Dr Munshi].
(Based on: Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, p 400 ).

“Timur himself proceded against Kator, which denoted the region between Kashmir and Kabol. And sent a detachment against the Siyaposhes. The fort of the Kator, deserted by the people, was leveled with the ground and houses of the city were burnt down. The infidels who took refuge on top of the hill were defeated and many of them put to death. Some of the infidels held out for three days and Timur offered them the usual alternative of death or Islam. They chose the latter, but soon recanted and attacked a regiment of Muslim soldiers during night. But the latter were on their guard and killed a number of infidels and took 150 of them as prisoners “who were afterwards put to death by enraged soldiery”. As soon as it was day, Timur ordered his troops to advance on all four sides, “to kill all the men, to make prisoners the women and the children and to plunder and lay waste all their property”. When the order was faithfully executed, he “directed towers to be built on the mountains of the skulls of those obstinate unbelievers”. In order to let posterity know of this expedition, “in the auspicious month of Ramazan, A.H. 800” (A.D. 1398), Timur engraved an account of it on a neighbouring hill and then proceeded to retrieve the disaster that had befallen the other part of the army which had been sent against the Siyaposhes”.
(Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, p 401-408 ).

[above text is taken from: History and Culture of Indian People, The Delhi Sultanate, p 117 Dr R. C. Majumdar, Dr A. D. Pusalkar, Dr Munshi].

“Burban Aglan, who was sent against the Siyaposhes with 10000 men, “was routed by , and fled from a small number of infidels” . A small detachment of 400 men under Muhammad Azad, sent to his help, was attacked by the infidels, but he fought gallantly and after having recovered the horses and the armor lost by Aglan, returned home-wards. Timur then advanced in person and captured some places but, as nothing more is said, presumably, after this, the Siyaposhes were left alone”.
(Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, p 401-408 ).

“Timur then exterminated the rebellious predatory tribes of Aghanis and crossed the Sindhu river in September, 1398. He marched along the Jhelum and defeated several local chiefs, crossed this river below its junction with Chenab and reached Tulamba, which submitted without any fight. Here news reached him that Pir Muhammad had captured Multan. The two armies then joined, and after sending a part of his forces by way of Dipalpore and Samana, Timur himself proceeded to Bhatnir, a strong fortified place occupied by Dul Chand, a Hindu chief “famous thorought the whole country”. [ref: History and Culture of Indian People, The Delhi Sultanate, p 117) Dr R. C. Majumdar, Dr A. D. Pusalkar, Dr Munshi].

“The causus belli was furnished by conduct of chiefs and nobles of the city of Dipalpore who had tendered allegiance to Pir Mohammad but later turned rebels and killed Musafir Kaboli, the governor appointed by Timur. On hearing the approach of Timur, the rebels took refuge in Bhatnir fort. The fort was fortified by a body of Rajputs who offered a stout resistance but Dul Chand ultimately surrendered and presented him to Timur. Timur then punished various refractory chiefs, especially the 500 from Dipal Pore and their wives and children were made slaves…”. [Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, pp 420-427].

“Timur then captured the city of Sarsuti and the fearful scene was repeated. “All these infidel Hindus were slain, their wives and children were made prisoners, and their property and goods became the spoil of the victors”. Several thousand women and children who were brought captive became Mohammadans. [Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, pp 427-428].

“Then the Timur proceeded against the Jats. Although they fled to the jungles, Timur pursued them there. He killed 2000 Jats, captured their wives and children and plundered their cattle and propert” [Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, p 429].

“About this time another part of Timur’s army which was following a more northerly route joined him near Samana, and Timur marched via Panipat towards Delhi. After reaching neighborhood of Delhi, he sent a force of cavalary in advance to Delhi and had ordered it to plunder and destroy every village, and to kill every one whom they met. The cavalary faithfully obeyed the orders, plundered every village, killed the men, carried away a number of Hindu Prisonoers, both male and female…” ([Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, p 432].

“Next day Timur crossed Yamuna, and captured Loni on other bank of river. People here were mostly Hindus. Many of the Rajputs placed their wives and children in their houses and burnt them and then they rushed to the battle and were killed. After this fort was was captured, Timur gave orders that Musulman prisoners should be separated and saved. But the infidels should all be dispatched to hell with the proselytizing sword……”. ([Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, p 433].

[Source: History and Culture of Indian People, The Delhi Sultanate, p 117-121, 123, Dr R. C. Majumdar, Dr A. D. Pusalkar, Dr Munshi].


“Emperor Timur also had to fight with Shiaposh and Katawer Kafirs (1399 AD) living within the Doab of Panjshir and Alishang rivers towards the northern area. A section of the Katawer Shiaposh Kafirs (Kambojas) gave Mongole raider Timur a very obstinate fighting, but were eventually defeated by his numerous and superior forces….. “ (The Gates of India 1910, p 94-134 political map facing page 94, by Dr Thomas Holdich, D.Sc).
“The story as told by Timur’s Historian, Sharifudin, says that in A.D 1399, when Timur was at Andarab, complaints were made to him of outrage and oppression by the exaction of tribute, or ‘Karaj’ against idolators of Katawar and the Shiaposh. It appears that Katawar was then the general name for the northern regions of Kafirstan, although, no reference to that name had been recorded lately….” (op cit. p 355).
“Timur is said to have taken a third part of the army of Andarab against the infidels, and to have reached Perjan (probably Parwan) from whence he detached a paert of his force to the north of that place, whilst he himself proceeded to Kawak, which is certainly the Khawak at the head of the Panjir valley. …From Khawak he ‘made the ascent’ of the mountains of the ‘Ketnev’ (i.e. he crossed the intervening snow-covered divide between the Panjshir and the head of Alishang) and descended on the fortress of Najil. This was abandoned by the Siaposh Kafirs, who held a high hill on left bank of the river. After the obstinate fight, the hill was finally carried and the male infidels “whose souls were blacker than their garments” were killed and their women and children were made prisoners. Timur set up a pillar with an inscription recording the event ………….” (ref: The Gates of India 1910, p 355-356 and political map facing page 94, by Dr Thomas Holdich, D.Sc).

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Old 11-25-2001, 04:56 PM
Posts: n/a
Default As some of our readers might h

As some of our readers might have noted, we have used name Kamtoz and Kamoz interchangeably for Katirs and the Kam tribes of Nuristan. This is based on the text of Sir George Scott Robertson (The Kafirs of Hindukush).

[Actually George Scott has also some ‘confusion’ and himself admits that his nomenclature may be some what different from some other investigators who have preeceded him or who would follow him].



“…….Thus the upper part of Bashgul valley is called Katirgul (Lutdeh in Chitrali, or Kamtoz in Pushtu), the middle portion Muman (Madugal in Chitrali), and the lower part Kam (Kamdesh in Chitrali, or Kamoz in Pushtu):

Note that in the text, Sir G. Scott writes that the land of the ‘Katir’ Kafirs of upper Bashgul valley is called Kamtoz, while that of Kam Kafirs living in lower Bashagul valley is called Kamoz.

“A convenient classification is to divide all Kafirs into:
(1)Siaposh Kafirs
(2)Waigilis Kafirs
(3)Presungulis (Viron) Kafirs. Another important tribe is called Ashkun Kafirs of whom it was very difficult to get information…..” (the aboriginal inhabitants of Kafirstan).

“The ‘SIAPOSH KAFIRS’ classification contains the following: (1)KATIR KAFIRS, (2)the KAM KAFIRS.

The KATIR KAFIRS of ‘SIAPOSH” grouping comprise the Katir, Kti or Katawar, Kulam and the Ramguli Kafirs. [(ref to page 76 from (a) to (d)]

“Of the other tribes included under the designation ‘SIAPOSH’, the chief is the ‘KAM’ or ‘Kamtoz’. This people inhabits the Bashgul and its lateral valleys from confines of Madugal country to the Kunar valley. It has seven villages and various small settlements or hamlets……” (op cit p 76-77).


THUS Sir George Scott Robertson himself has ‘unnecessarily’ confused himself in drawing a fine line in nomenclaturing the ‘Siaposh Kafirs’.

The other researchers/investigators like M Elphinstone, who visited Kafirstan in pre-Islamic times have not differentiated Katirs and the Kams (of Siaposh group) into Kamoze and Kamtoz names but have rather called them as Caumoze, Camoze, Caumoje, Camojee etc. ( An Account of the Kingdom of Cabol, 1972, Oxford University, Press London, N.Y. Vol II, p 376-377 by M. Elphinstone).

In fact, according to all other investigators, Kamtoz and Kamoz (Camoze, Caumoze), Kamoje (Camoje, Caumoje), Kamojee (Caumojee/Camojee) etc are the various ways of pronouncing their name in Pushtu, Chitrali or in Kafir languages. And they all remind us of the ancient name, the ‘Kamboja’ of Ashoka’s R.E’s Sanskrit/Pali texts..

In fact, the several investigators have now established that the Katirs/Kators , the Ktis or Katawar and the Kam Kafirs…all belong to the so-called SIAPOSH grouping and they are all related ETHNICALLY. The Kams and the Katas also SPEAK SAME LANGUAGE or ITS DIALECTICAL VARIATIONS (Sir G. Scott Robertson)

Cf: “….. the Jasi/Jaisi and all the people of Nuristan who have emanated from ‘Ktivi region’, including the ‘Kata’ (Katirs) from Ktivi proper, the ‘Ksto’ from Kstu, the ‘Mumo’ from the Mum, the ‘Binio’ from Buni, and the ‘Kom’ from the Kam-tol speak one language, albeit with dialectical divisions. These divisions were furthered as the people emigrated out of their upper Pech* homeland.” (Richard F. Strands. Richard has recently spent over 25 years in investigating the Nuristanis/their culture, language etc).

* PECH=KAMAH river valley ( Sir Scott Robertson, see The Kafirs of Hindukush, 1896, p 81)

Dr Loh and numerous others investigators have designated the ‘Siaposh tribe’ of Hindukush as the modern descendents of ancient Kambojas.

[Writes Dr Nand Lal Dey” “According to Dr Loh, the Shiaposh tribes living in the Hindukush mountains are the descendents of the Kamboja people. (The Geographical Dictionery of Ancient and Medieval India p 87, by Dr. Nundo Lal Dey)]

M Elphinstone in fact was the first investigator who had identified these Camoze/Camoje etc Caufir tribes with the ancient Kambojas. (op. cit. f.n., p 619)

“Katirs inhabit various valleys, as Siaposh communities, entirely independent of one another; yet they still acknowledge a common origin and a relationship to each others” op cit p 77, first para).

Sir George Scott also admits in his book that there is a possibility that other investigators might have used different nomenclature for the Kafirs and future investigators may use still different. “Nomenclature you get for these tribes depends” , he says, “ from which direction you enters to investigate the people of Kafirstan”. (op cit).
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Old 11-30-2001, 03:02 AM
Posts: n/a

Sunday, November 25, 2001 - 03:26 pm:


*********************************************** *

“A convenient classification is to divide all Kafirs into:
(1)Siaposh Kafirs
(2)Waigilis Kafirs
(3)Presungulis (Viron) Kafirs. Another important tribe is called Ashkun Kafirs of whom it was very difficult to get information…..” (the aboriginal inhabitants of Kafirstan).

“The ‘SIAPOSH KAFIRS’ classification contains the following: (1)KATIR KAFIRS, (2)the KAM KAFIRS.

The KATIR KAFIRS of ‘SIAPOSH” grouping comprise the Katir, Kti or Katawar, Kulam and the Ramguli Kafirs. [(ref to page 76 from (a) to (d)]

“Of the other tribes included under the designation ‘SIAPOSH’, the chief is the ‘KAM’ or ‘Kamtoz’. This people inhabits the Bashgul and its lateral valleys from confines of Madugal country to the Kunar valley. It has seven villages and various small settlements or hamlets……” (op cit p 75-77).

*********************************************** **



“A convenient classification is to divide all Kafirs into:

(1)Siaposh Kafirs

(2)Waigilis Kafirs. Aso includes Ashun Kafirs of whom it was very difficult to get information.

(3)Presungulis (Viron) Kafirs. (the aboriginal inhabitants of Kafirstan).

"The ‘SIAPOSH KAFIRS’ classification contains the following:


(A)KATIR KAFIRS: of ‘SIAPOSH' grouping further comprise:

(1)Katir (also called Kamoz: see para 3, p 76, Ibid)
(2)Kti or Katawar,
(3)Kulam and
(4)the Ramguli Kafirs."
[(ref to page 76 from (a) to (d), Ibid]

(B): “Of the last tribe included under the designation ‘SIAPOSH’, the chief is the ‘KAM’ or ‘Kamtoz’. This people inhabits the Bashgul and its lateral valleys from confines of Madugal country to the Kunar valley. It has seven villages and various small settlements or hamlets……” (op cit p 76-77).


The inadvertent error is sincerely regretted.
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Old 02-08-2002, 03:54 AM
H. S. Chandi
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http://groups.google.com/groups?selm=3Bgx7.24373%24ev2.32941%40www.newsrang er.com

Dear Mr KSINGH, do you also want the INDIAN KAMBOJAS be treated in the same fashion as the Afghans ....the modern descendents of ANCIENT KAMBOJA/YAVANA MLECHCHAS OF AFGHANISTAN?

Be informed that 'some fraction' of the SO-CALLED ANCIENT AFGHAN KAMBOJA MLECHCHAS......... themselves form now a "very important segment" of your Indo-Agrarian Society i.e. the Indian Kambojas!

Do you or don't you intend to include the Punjab/Haryana/Rajasthan Kambojas into your proposed "UNION OF INDIAN ARYAN AGRARIANS"?

Remember KSINGH!, without the "Kamboja Agrarians of India"..., our 'Dear India' is sure to go relapse back to old days of chronic 'FOOD SHORTAGE' and inevitably would go 'begging' to same USA in order to feed its 'numerous hungary soules'.

Do you want it happen?
Just a thought?

Sincerely and with regards

Harjit Singh Chandi
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Old 02-09-2002, 05:18 PM
Posts: n/a
Default Let's sincerely sympathise

Let's sincerely sympathise with this madhyadesha aryan ksingh. After all, the 'conquored people' have the right to swear at their 'conqurors'...and so this singh fellah really does.

Ancient Indian history is a strong witness to the fact that the 'ancestors' of these helpless madhyadeshis like mr ksingh have also been using similar abusive language towards their 'less conservative' but 'more enterprising' counter-parts from north-west frontiers. Being helpless against the 'guts' of those so-called 'frontier mlechchas', these masochists simply submitted and started calling them names like barbaric invaders, mlecchas, sudras or degraded races. This is not at all surprising. What is surprising however is that over the millenia these madhyadeshis have not yet forgotten their old scars and till date, continue to nurture a deep-rooted haterd malice towards their ancient tormentors...whom they still would abusively like to call 'mlecchas'. Probably this is the only 'mental consolation' these madhyadeshi descendents of the ancient aryan loosers can derive from their history of repeated losses of long ago at the hands of their fronteir aryan brethern.
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Old 03-21-2002, 06:50 AM
Harjit. Chandi
Posts: n/a
Default `Afghan (KAMBOJA) regi

`Afghan (KAMBOJA) region was scene of Mahabharata battle' ?????????????????????????????????

Dr. Sidharth said several literary references supported these conclusions. The Vishnu Purana clearly mentions that 1,015 years elapsed between the birth of Parikshit, the son of Pandavas and the coronation of Nanda who lived around 300 BC. References in the Mahabharata and Vishnu Purana and other texts mentions places around latitude of 35 degrees and to people living there, for example, Gandahar (present day Kandahar) and Kamboja (in Afghanistan), Kashmir and China. The peoples referred to include the Gandharas, the Sakas (from Sakadweepa near Afghanistan), Yavanas (Westerners), Tusharas (Tohara, Tukhara, the Tukharians of Chinese; Turkistan) and Pahlavas of Iran.

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Old 03-23-2002, 07:10 AM
H. Chandi
Posts: n/a
Default Gandhara art and Asoka inscrip

Gandhara art and Asoka inscriptions in Afghanistan

by Professor Abaya Aryasinghe

In the Edicts of Asoka (No. 5V and VIII) reference to the Yavanas and Kambojas is made. The latter peoples occupied an immediate position between the Yavanas and Gandharians. The Gandharians have the reputation of originating a remarkable style of art and sculpture which influenced the neighbouring lands including Bamiyan.

The militant Taleban or any other Muslim organisation cannot claim this territory of the Yavanas, Cambodians (=Kambojas here ) and the Gandharians who built an excellent Buddhist civilisation for centuries. The Muslims, in a sense, are intruders in the land governed by Chandragupta and Asoka. It is time that all Buddhists in the world should issue an ultimatum asking these militants to leave the land of the Buddhists.

Saif Fazel


Saif Fazel



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