The Sherpao family is a cadet branch of the Kheshgi family.
As their name suggests, they are found in the village of Sherpao in the Hashtnagar area of Charsadda District, Pakistan. Sherpao, the common ancestor of the family, was the grandson of Muhammad, the common ancestor of the Muhammadzai branch of the Kheshgi family. According to Captain E. G. G. Hastings in 1878, the Sherpao had only one high-land hamlet named Dakai, as their other lands were lost to surrounding tribes.
The Sherpao family has played a very prominent role in Pakistani politics. Khan Bahadur Ghulam Haider Khan Sherpao was a prominent leader in the Pakistan movement. His son Hayat Sherpao was a founder of the Pakistan People's Party (PPP) and the youngest governor of the North-West Frontier Province (current Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) before his life was cut short by a tragic assassination at Peshawar University on February 8, 1975. His assassination has had a profound effect on the political landscape of Pakistan and still continues to be relevant in the politics of the country. His younger brother, Aftab Ahmad Sherpao, is one of the most senior and recognized political leaders of the country and continues to play an active role in politics in his neo-nationalist party Qaumi Watan Party. In the past he has served as Pakistan's Interior Minister, Pakistan's Minister for Water & Power, besides being Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Northern Areas and States and Frontier Regions, before having twice served as the Chief Minister of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, often abbreviated as KP or KPK and formerly known as the North-West Frontier Province, is one of the four provinces of Pakistan. It is located in the northwestern region of the country, along the Afghanistan–Pakistan border.
Qaumi Watan Party, abbreviated as QWP and formerly called Pakistan Peoples Party–Sherpao (PPP–S), is one of the prominent political parties in Pakistan, that split away from the Pakistan Peoples Party just before the 2002 general election. PPP–S was named after its leader Aftab Ahmad Sherpao. Differences had cropped up between PPP Chairperson Benazir Bhutto and Senior Leader Aftab Ahmad Sherpao in 1999 and the latter was expelled from the PPP by the former, thus creating PPP–S. In October 2012, it was renamed to Qaumi Watan Party when it changed its political agenda and declared itself as a Pashtun neo-nationalist party.
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Hayat Mohammad Khan Sherpao, simply known as Hayat Sherpao, was a left-wing intellectual and socialist, serving as the fifteenth Governor of North West Frontier Province of Pakistan, as well as vice-chairman of Pakistan Peoples Party. Sherpao held important executive offices, including served as the Interior minister and had held a number of provincial ministries of the North West Frontier Province. He was assassinated in 1975, and his death was blamed on a rival political party in the province - the Awami National Party of Khan Abdul Wali Khan.
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