One interesting group are the Kalash Caucasians who live in the mountains of northern Pakistan. Many have very European features and some even have blue eyes and blonde hair which are distinctly European genetics. There are some historians who believe that they are the descendants of Alexander the Great who invaded the Pakistani region. There is a video documentary below called 'Mysterious Kalash – The Untold Story.'
The other theory is that they are the descendants of wandering European tribes who settled in that region.
The Kalash are indigenous peoples in the Northern Himalayan region of the Hindu Kush Mountains of Pakistan. They are located in the Chitral District of the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province in Pakistan.
Language: Their native tongue is the Kalash language which is from the Dardic family which is part of the of Indo-Iranian languages which are member of the Indo-European language.
Religion: Pakistan Muslims are trying to convert these people to Islam and some have already converted though on a whole they are resisting. Their current religious beliefs and customs are pre-Christian. Kalash follow their own Religion which is made up of a single creator called ‘Dezau’ with 12 male and female gods, the major god is Mahandeo and some folks say this is the same god as Ares known as Mars by the Romans.
Address: The men wear traditional goat-skin tunics and the women wear black reaching to the ankles. They have beautiful embroidery.
Culture: The Kalash share similar Illyrian/Albanian roots to Hunza, Burusho and Pamir people. They use symbols, decoration, architecture, mythology, fable, music and dance similar to these people. They also have similar traditional costumes, customs, words and even the same dog breed! They say it themselves, they are ancient Illyrians and look like European Albanians.
The Kalash Indigenous Survival Program faces many challenges. How can we help improve their lives without destroying their fragile cultures and traditions? To help the Kalash you can contact people below on the links provided or you can have a holiday and visit them through Tourist Industry Tours who help keep their culture alive.
First, you need a permit from the office in Chitral that oversees foreigners travel in this part of Pakistan or at the Pakistan Tourist Development office. The one in Chitral is at the PTDC Motel, Main Bazaar, Chitral (NWFP) Tel: (0943) 412683. But I would recommend that you go with a guide.
Phone: 92-933-413151 and 413152
Address: Rumbur, Bumburet and Birir valley
Directions: Wagons for the Kalash valley run daily from the Chitral town center near Khyber Bank.
Useful Videos and Links
Kalash of Cultures – Pakistan
In a remote part of northern Pakistan, a tribe believed to be descended from Alexander the Great is facing cultural annihilation.