James Tod places it in the list of Aboriginal Races, many names in which are not capable of identification, and their correct form is uncertain and those of the mercantile tribes are largely groups confined to Rajasthan.
In the post Chandella period the history of Mahoba gets obscure. It was under the reign of Delhi Sultans. Local traditions ascribe and associate Bhars, Gonds and Khangar clans who held its administration from time to time.
H.A. Rose  writes that the Chitrali (चितराली ), Chitral, Chitrar or Chitlar, as it is also called, will be found described in the Imperial Gazetteer, are inhabitants of the State of Chitral. The Chitralis are divided into three classes — Adamzadas, Arbābzādas and Faqir-Miskin.The other Adamzada clans include Rono. From the Rono families the wazirs are generally, but not always, chosen. The Ronos are most numerous in Yassin, Mastuj and Chitral, and are found, though in decreasing numbers, as one goes eastward, in Nilgar, Gilgit, Punyal, etc. In Nagar and Yassin they call themselves Hara or Haraiyo, in Wakhan and Sarikul Khaibar-Khatar, and in Shighnan Gaibalik-Khatar. Wherever found they are held in great respect.
Three principal traditions as to their origin exist,
- (1) that they descended from Zun, Rono and Harai, the three sons of Sumalik who ruled in Mastuj before the Shdhrei dynasty of the Shins was established ;
- (2) that they are of Arab descent, from Muhammad Hanifa, son of Ali ; and
- (3) that they came from the ancient principality of Rajauri, near Punch, and are descended from three brothers, Sirang, Surung and Khangar Phututo. In appearance generally taller than the other inhabitants of Chitral, with rather high cheek-bones, oval faces not thickly bearded, and fairly developed features.
Story of Chanesar and Lailá
Sir H. M. Elliot, Edited by John Dowson mentions following story of Chanesar and Lailá :
A girl named Kaunrú, daughter of the powerful and renowned Raná Khangár was betrothed to her cousin. Being incomparably beautiful, the young lady gave herself great airs among her associates. At that time no one could be compared to Chanesar, of Dewal, for beauty of person, store of wealth, extent of territory, or force of authority, and an alliance with him was earnestly desired by many beauties. One day a girl named Jamní, one of
[p.348]: Kaunrú's companions, said to her, tauntingly, "Perhaps you entertain thoughts of being married to Chanesar, since you practice so many fine airs, and are so affected." This taunt pierced Kaunrú's heart, and without even having seen Chanesar's face, she became desperately in love with him, and almost beside herself. When Marghín, her mother, found this out, she apprised Ráná Khangár of it. As a matrimonial alliance with Chanesar was the greatest honour of the day, and there seemed no way of accomplishing that except by stratagem, the Ráná advised Marghín to take their daughter in the garb of a merchant to Chanesar's town, without letting any one know of her so doing, and before Kaunrú should become the victim of despair, and thus perhaps Chanesar himself might become ensnared in the net of good contrivance. Agreeably to this recommendation, Marghín set out with her daughter and some merchandize, crossed the river Parpat, and leaving her own country of Dhat, soon entered the Dewal territory, and arrived at the city where Chanesar lived. She sent a message through a gardener's wife, to Jhakra, Chanesar's Wazír, intimating her desire for a union. Chanesar-devoted to Lailá, whose beauty and charms might excite the jealousy of the celebrated Lailá-returned for answer that he wished for none but Lailá, bade the gardener's wife beware of bringing more such messages to him, and directed the new comers to be sent away, lest Lailá should hear of them, and be annoyed. On being informed of this, Marghín sold her merchandise, and went one day into the presence of Lailá, in the garb of a poor stranger beggar woman, saying:-"Adverse circumstances have driven me and my daughter far from our own country; in spinning thread we have no equals, if you will kindly take us as your slaves, we will so serve you as to merit general approval." Lailá took them both, and was pleased with their work. After some time, the arrangements of Chanesar's bedchamber became Kaunrú's special charge. Kaunrú one night thought of her own country, and of her splendid position there, and her eyes filled with tears. Chanesar, seeing this, asked her what was the matter. She answered that she had raised the wick of the lamp, and then scratched her eye with the hand with which she did it, which brought the tears into her eye. On hearing this,
[p.349]: Lailá was very pressing to learn the truth, and Kaunrú, after much pressing, said, "The truth is, I am the daughter of a sovereign, of such wealth, that the lustre of his jewels serves him for night-lights; hence the smoke of the lamp confused my brain, and the recollection of past days entered my head, and I wept that they were no more." Lailá asked her for proof of the truth of this pre¬tension; she instantly produced a most delicate dress, such as Lailá had never seen, with a necklace worth nine lakhs of rupees. Lailá was charmed with such precious rareties, and desired to have them. Kaunrú and Marghín said, "We will give them on condition that you give us Chanesar for one night." As most women are wanting in understanding, she agreed to the terms, and one night, when Chanesar was drunk, she made him over to Kaunrú. Chanesar passed the entire night in unconsciousness, and when he awoke in the morning, was astonished at finding who it was he had in his bosom. Kaunrú's mother was all night on the alert as to what should happen. Finding in the morning that her daughter's object was not accomplished, she began muttering from behind the curtain, "how strange it is that Lailá should sell such a husband as Chanesar for a mere necklace! and that he should be ignorant of this; it is not fitting that a man should again consort with such a wife." Chanesar hearing this, looked lovingly on Kaunrú; she told him the whole particulars of her story from beginning to end. He then said:-"Since the case is thus, be of good heart, for I am no more Lailá's, and I will love you with my whole heart."
On Lailá hearing of what had taken place, all her stratagems were futile, her constant union was changed to utter separation After the lapse of a long time, she returned to her paternal village, and passed her time in solitude. Before this affair, a girl from the family of Lailá had been betrothed to the minister Jhakra; but after what had happened to Lailá her relations would not give the girl to him. As he was bent on the match, he tried many devices to bring about the marriage, but all in vain. Lailá sent word to him that if he could by any means contrive to bring Chanesar with him, she would pledge herself his desired marriage should take place.
On receiving this message, Jhakra, with much ado, persuaded Chanesar to accompany him to Lailá's village. Lailá changed her
[p.350]: dress, and putting on the garb of a woman who bears the message of assignation, veiled her face, and entered the presence of Chanesar, when she spoke reproachfully of the relation in which he stood to Lailá. During the conversation, she played off some coquettish airs, and captivated Chanesar without his knowing who she was. As all Chanesar's abandonment of Lailá, and unkindness too, arose from jealousy, and he was in reality as much attached to her as ever, on the remembrance of the joys of the time of his union with her he became beside himself, and said, "O sweet-tongued girl! thou thyself art the rarest of beauties! How long wilt thou talk of Lailá? Speak to me of thyself, for my heart yearns to thee!" She replied: "How can the heart love one faithless as thou?" On hearing her speech, Chanesar wished to tear her veil off; but Lailá, who was herself her own messenger, at the very height of his ardour, unveiled herself with her own hand. When Chanesar saw that she was indeed Lailá, he suddenly drew a cold sigh from his sorrowful heart and expired. On seeing this, Lailá, too, uttered one groan and fell down lifeless. The pair were burned according to custom, and their strange story is well remembered by the people, and is the theme of a popular and moving song in the Sindí tongue. Idra'ki Beg-Lár composed a Persian poem on this story; the present writer, for fear of prolixity, has satisfied himself with relating thus much of it.
Colligation in Fighting
Sir H. M. Elliot, Edited by John Dowson writes that .... The extraordinary custom alluded to in the Beg Lár-náma, of a devoted band tying themselves together by their waistbands, before fighting à tout outrance, is mentioned in the same terms in the Tárikh-i Sind (MS. p. 173).
"When they saw the army of the Moghals, they dismounted from their horses, took their turbans from off their heads, and binding the corners of their mantles, or outer garments, to one another, they engaged in battle; for it is the custom of the people of Hind and Sind, whenever they devote themselves to death, to descend from their horses, to make bare their heads and feet, and to bind themselves to each other by their mantles and waistbands."
These people appear most of them to have been Sammas; and it is among their descendants in Kachh that we find this curious custom again alluded to (Táríkh-i Sind, MS. p. 194), when Mirzá Sháh Husain attacked Ráí Khangár. Here we have a new feature added, of serrying shields together like a compact phalanx.
"The men under Khangár, having set themselves in battle array, dismounted from their horses, locked their shields together, seized their spears in their hands, and bound the corners of their waistbands."
The Tarkhán-náma omits all mention of the proceedings between Ráí Khangár and Mirzá Sháh Husain, but they are noticed in the Tuhfatu-l Kirám (MS. p. 194); and the observance of this strange practice is also there alluded to, in words similar to those quoted from the Táríkh-i Sind.
[p.538]: The dismounting from horseback, prior to actual contact in the field of battle, is mentioned in a previous note of this Appendix, and appears to have been a more common occurrence; but the colligation evidently implies desperation, even unto death.
Distribution in Pakistan
According to 1911 census the Khangar were the principal Muslim Jat clan in:
- Jhelum District - Khangar (1,146).
- Jat History Dalip Singh Ahlawat/Parishisht-I, s.n. ख-67.
- Dr Pema Ram:Rajasthan Ke Jaton Ka Itihas, p.298
- An Inquiry Into the Ethnography of Afghanistan, H. W. Bellew, p.120,139,168,184
- James Todd Annals/Chapter 7 Catalogue of the Thirty Six Royal Races,p.144
- An Inquiry Into the Ethnography of Afghanistan,p.115
- An Inquiry Into the Ethnography of Afghanistan,p.120
- An Inquiry Into the Ethnography of Afghanistan,p.139
- An Inquiry Into the Ethnography of Afghanistan, p.168
- An Inquiry Into the Ethnography of Afghanistan,p.184
- A glossary of the Tribes and Castes of the Punjab and North-West Frontier Province By H.A. Rose Vol II/C
- The History of India, as Told by Its Own Historians/VIII. Tuhfatu-l Kirám,p.347-350
- The History of India, as Told by Its Own Historians/Note (D).-Miscellaneous,p.537-538
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