Gardezi is a common Muslim family name.


The name denotes people from Gardez, the capital of the Paktia province in Afghanistan. The Gardezi family name is found in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh and India.

The Gardezis of Multan

The most notable Gardezi family is the one living in Multan in the province of Punjab, Pakistan. They are the descendants of an eleventh century Syed saint, Shah Yusuf Gardez, who came to Multan from Gardez, Afghanistan. The family is mentioned in the book "Between Oxus and Jumna", by the renowned historian, Arnold Joseph Toynbee. Shah Yusuf Gardez was a descendant of Imam Zain-al-Abideen(A.S.)(4th Imam)

Arnold J. Toynbee in his book "Between Oxus and Jumna" writes,

“………the tomb under whose shadow I am now writing ….. is the tomb of Shah Yousaf Gardezi. I am being entertained in the Gardezi family’s ‘Dewan-Khanah’, their family guest house, and the tomb, with the toms of the saints descendents clustering round it, is only a stone’s-throw away. Being named Joseph, I (like Stalin) am this saint’s namesake, but I cannot claim also to be a ‘Shah’; for, in Pakistan, ‘Shah’ signifies a Sayid: that is to say, a descendent of the Prophet Muhammad.

The legend declares that, nine hundred years ago, Shah Yousaf Gardezi came riding into Multan on a lion, with a live snake for a whip and a pair of pigeons fluttering over his head. He had ridden his lion all the way from Gardez in Afghanistan, and he had bought with him the teaching of the Twelve-Imam branch of Shi'ah sect of Islam (the form of Shi'ism that today is the national religion of Persia). In the course of Nine Hundred years both the saint's descendents and the pigeon's descendents have multiplied exceedingly. This whole quarter of the city (Multan) is now occupied by the houses of the Gardezis and the Gardezis' cousins' cousins. As for the Pigeons, they live on the Gardezis' roofs and cluster, in force, on the Gardezis' Saintly ancestor's tomb. The tomb is cased in blue tiles, dating from the reign of Mughal Emperor Humayun, and at intervals there are apertures in the tile works, opening into cavities specially provided to give the pigeons a lodging as close as possible to the spot where the saints’ body lies. It is a pretty sight to see them poking in and out, for all the world as if the tomb has been built solely for their benefits.

The pigeons flutter here below. The kites soar there, up aloft, at what looks almost like jet-plane altitude when one lifts up ones eye towards the sky. Since this is the Indian Subcontinent, the kites do not make pigeons their prey. They take their cue from the local human beings and leave the pigeons alone.

Nine hundred years of unbroken family history. What a sheet-anchor for the fortunate Gardezis in this swiftly changing world.”

See also

*Shaikh Siddiqui

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