Khushal Khan Khattak
Born in 1613, also known as Khushal Baba, Khushal Khan Khattak was a legendary Pashtun poet, warrior and scholar, and chief of the Khattak tribe of Pashtuns. Khushal, through his poetry, advocated Pastun nationalism. He led a life marred with struggle for freedom against the oppressive forces. His opinions and ideas form a new stage in the ideological and intellectual development of Pashtuns. Khushal’s struggle for liberty gradually changed into national integrity. For this purpose, he tried to unite Pashtuns owing to this he traveled from the mountains of Tirah to Swat. To some extent, he seems successful by uprising the name of Pashtuns. He says about them that due to his struggle they got recognition in the world: "Of what worth, of what value were the Khattaks (but) I have made them to be counted among the tribes".
The above couplets make it clear that Khushal’s fight was not based on his personal greed or enmity. Fighting for the defense of motherland and for the rights of his compatriots is the struggle of peace and that is a noble cause. He fought up to the end of his life for the rights of oppressed people and for the freedom of his motherland. Thus, all of his struggles were for the establishment of peace. Translation of some of his couplets is given as under:
- "Be like an eagle that lives on peaks of mountains, and not like a crow of village that wanders around for food due to hunger."
- "An Honorable has only two tasks to perform, either he will give up his life or will achieve the target."
- "Only when the rust is removed from steel gradually, An arrow can be formed from decent steel."
- "The Man in the world is he, Who embrace the hardships."
- "The knowing, the perceptive man is he who knows about himself, for in self knowledge and insight lies knowledge of the holiest."
- "To My Mind Death is Better than Life When life can no Longer be Held with Honor."