A glossary of the Tribes and Castes of the Punjab and North-West Frontier Province By H.A. Rose Vol II/B

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A glossary of the Punjab Tribes and Castes

Tribes and Castes starting with - B


  • Baba Lal Daryai (बाबा लाल दर्याई), a sect, followers of saddhu whose shrine is on the Chenab in the Wazirabad tahsil of Gujrdawala- and who miraculously turned water into food.
  • Baba Lali (बाबा लाली), a follower of one of several Baba Lals. Baba Lal Tahliwala was a Bairagi of Pind Dadan Khan who could turn dry sticks into fihisham [tahli] trees. Another Baba Lal had a famous coutroversy with Dara Shikoh * Another Baba Lal had his headquarters at Bhera, and yet another has a shrine in Gurdaspur.
  • Babar (बाबर). — A small tribe allied to the Sheranis — indeed said to be descended from a son of Dom, a grandson of Sherainai. They are divided into two main branches, Mahsand and Ghora Khel. The former are sub-divided into four and the latter into eight sub-divisions.
The Babars are a civilised tribe and most of them can read and write. They are devoted to commerce and are the wealthiest, quietest and most honest tribe of the sub-Sulaiman plains. Edwardes called them the most superior race in the whole of the trans-Indus districts, and the proverb says : 'A Babar fool is a Gandapur sage.' Intensely democratic, they have never had a recognised chief, and the tribe is indeed a scattered one, many residing in Kandahar and other parts of Khorasan as traders. A few are still engaged in the powinda traffic. The Babars appear to have occupied their present seats early in the 14th century, driving out the Jats and Baloch (?) population from the plains and then being pushed northward, by the Ushtarani proper. Their centre is Chaudwan and their outlying villages are held by Jat and Baloch tenants, as they cultivate little themselves.
Raja Karan.

Babbar. + Gabbar. + Rabbar. + Jhaggar.
  • Babla (बबला). a section of the Bhatias, to which belong the chaudhris of Shujabad. Multan Gr, 1902, p. 166.

* This sect is noticed in Wilson's sects of the Hindus.
A Babar, the Amin-ul-Mulk Nur Muhammad Khan, was Diwan-i-Kul-Mamlakat to Taimiar Shah and gave a daughter to Shah Zaman Abdali. Four Babar families are also Settled in Multan : Gazetteer, 1901-02, p. 161
Badanah — Badu
  • Badechh (बदेछ), a tribe of Jats, claiming to be Saroa Rajputs by descent through its eponym and his descendant Kura Pal whose sons settled in Sialkot under Shah Jahan : also found in Amritsar.
  • Badgujar/Bargujar (बड़गुजर), a class (or possibly rank) found among the Brahmans, Rajputs, Meos and possibly other tribes, as well as often along with Gujars. Thus the Bargujar Rajputs about Bhundsi in Gurgaon border on villages held by Gujars, and in one village there Gujars hold most of the village and Bargujar Rajputs the rest. Similarly in Basdalla near Punahana in Gurgaon Meos hold most of the village and Gujars the rest. (Sir J. Wilson, K.C.S.I., in P. N. Q. I., § 130). But according to Ibbetson, the Bargujar are one of the 36 royal Rajput families, and the only one except the Gahlot which claims descent from Lawa, son of Ram Chandra. Their connection with the Mandahar is noticed under Mandahar. They are of course of Solar race. Their old capital was Rajor, the ruins of which are still to be seen in the south of Alwar, and they held much of Alwar and the neighbouring parts of Jaipur till dipossessed by the Kachwdha. Their head-quarters are now at Anupshahr on the Ganges, but there is still a colony of them in Gurgaon on the Alwar border. Curiously enough, the Gurgaon Bargujar say that they came from Jullundur about the middle of the 15th century ; and it is certain that they are not very old holders of their present capital of Sohna, as the buildings of the Kambohs who held it before them are still to be seen there and are of comparatively recent date.
  • Badhan (बधन) or Pakhai (पखई), a tribe of Jats, claiming Saroa Rajput origin and descended from an eponym through Kala, a resident of Jammu. Found in Sialkot.
  • Badhaur (बधौर), an agricultural clan found in Shahpur.
  • Badhi (बधी), the carpenter who makes ploughs and other rude wood-work among the Gaddis : (f r. badhna, to cut with an axe or saw). See Barhai.
  • Badi (बादी), a gipsy tribe which does not prostitute its women. The word is said to be a corruption of Bazi-(gar) q. v. Cf. Wadia.
  • Badohal (बदोहल), a tribe of Jats who offer food to their sati, at her shrine in Jasran in Nabha, at weddings ; also milk on the 9th sudi in each month. Found in Jind.
  • Badu ( बदु), Baddun (बद्दुन), a gipsy tribe of Muhammadans, found in the Central Punjab, chiefly in the upper valleys of the Sutlej and Beas, Like the Kehals


they are followers of Imam Shafi* and by his teaching justify their habit of eating crocodiles, tortoises and frogs. They are considered outcast by other Muhammadans. They work in straw, make pipe-bowls, their women bleed by cupping and they are also said to load about bears and occasionally travel as pedlars. Apparently divided into three clans, Wahle, Dhara and Balara. They claim Arab origin. First cousins cannot intermarry. See Kehal.

  • Baghban (बागवान), Baghwan, the Persian equivalent of the Hindi word Mali meaning a 'gardener,' and commonly used as equivalent to Arain in the Western Punjab, and even as far east as Lahore and Jullundur. The Baghbans do not form a caste and the term is merely equivalent to Mali, Maliar, etc.
  • Baghela (बघेला), lit. "tiger's whelp," one of the main division of the Kathias, whose retainers or dependent; they probably were originally. Confined to the neighbourhood of Kamalia in Montgomery, and classed as Rajput agricultural.
  • Bahadarke (बहादर्के), a Kharral clan (agricultural) found in Montgomery : also a Joiya sept.
  • Bahali (बहाली), a Rajput clan (agricultural) found in Amritsar.
  • Bahi, a tribe of Pathans which holds a bara of 12 villages near Hoshiarpur, (should be verified ?).

* It is said that in the time of the Prophet there were four brothers, Imam Azam, Imam Hamil, Imam Shafi, and Imam Naik, aud Shaikh Dhamar, ancestor of the Badus, was a follower of this lmam Shafi. Once Shaikh Dhamar killed a tortoise, an act which was reprobated by three of the brothers, but Imam Shafi, approving his conduct the Shaikh ate the animal whereupon the three Imams called him had and hence his descendants are called Badu ! Such is the Badu legend, but the four Imams were were not brothers nor were they contemporaries of Prophet and Hamil is a corruption of Hampal.
It is doubtful whether Bagri is not applied to any Hindu or Muhammadan from Jaisalmer or Bikaner who speaks Bagri.
Bahniwal — Bahti
  • Bahniwal(बहनिवाल), a Jat tribe, found chiefly in Hissar and Patidla. They are also found on the lower Sutlej in Montgomery, where in 1881 they probably returned themselves as Bhatti Rajputs, which they claim to be by descent. In Hissar they appear to be a Bagri tribe, though they claim to be Deswali, and to have been Chauhans of Sambhar in Rajasthan whence they spread into Bikaner and Sirsa. Mr. Purser says of them:— "In numbers they are weak; but, in love of robbery they yield to none of the tribes." They gave much trouble in 1857. In the 15th century the Bahniwal held one of the six cantons into which Bikaner was then divided.
  • Bahrupia (बहरूपिया). — Bahrupia is in its origin a purely " occupational term derived from the Sanskrit bahu 'many' and rupa 'form' and denotes an actor, a mimic, one who assumes many forms or characters, or engages in many occupations. One of the favourite devices of the Bahrupias is to ask for money, and when it is refused, to ask that it may be given on condition of the Bahrupia succeeding in deceiving the person who refuses it. Some days later the Bahrupia will again visit the house in the disguise of a pedlar, a milkman, or what not, sell his goods without being detected, throw off his disguise, and claim the stipulated reward. They may be drawn from any caste, and in Rohtak there are Chuhra Bahrupias. But in some districts a family or colony of Bahrupias has obtained land and settled down on it, and so become a caste as much as any other. Thus there is a Bahrupia family in Panipat which holds a village revenue- free, though it now professes to be Shaikh. In Sialkot and Gujrat Mahtams are commonly known as Bahrupias. In the latter District the Bahrupias claim connection with the Rajas of Chittaur and say they accompanied Akbar in an expedition against the Pathans. After that they settled down to cultivation* on the banks of the Chenab. They have four clans — Rathaur, Chauhan, Punwar and Sapawat— which are said not to intermarry. All are Sikhs in this District. Elsewhere they are Hindus or Muhammadans, actors, mountebanks and sometimes cheats. The Bahrupias of Gurdaspur are said to work in cane and bamboo. The Bahrupia is distinct from the Bhand, and the Bahrupia villages on the Sutlej in Phillaur tahsil have no connection with the Mahtons of Hoshiarpur. Bahrupias are often found in wandering gangs.
  • Bahti (बाहती), a term used in the eastern, as Chang is used in the western, portion of the lower ranges of the Kangra Hills and Hoshiarpur as equivalent to Ghirth. All of them intermarry.
  • Bahti (बहती), hill men of fairly good caste, who cultivate and own land largely; and also work as labourers. They are said to be degraded Rajputs. In Hoshiarpur (except Dasuya) and Jullundur they are called Bahti; in Dasuya and Nurpur Chang ; in Kangra Ghirth; all intermarry freely. In the census of 1881 all three were classed as Bahti. The Chang are also said to be a low caste of labourers in the hills who also ply as muleteers.

* As cultivators they are thrifty and ambitious. They also make baskets, ropes and rope-nets — tranggars, and chikkas in Gujrat.
P. N. Q. I. § 1034.

Baid — Bairagi
  • Baid (बैद), a got of the Oswal Bhabras, Muhial Brahmans and other castes : also a physician, a term applied generaly to all who practise Vedic medicine.
  • Bains (बैंस), a Jat tribe, whose head-quarters appear to be in Hoshiarpur and Jullundur, though they have spread westwards oven as far as Rawalpindi, and eastwards into Ambala and the adjoining Native States. They say that they are by origin Janjua Rajputs, and that their ancestor Bains came eastwards in the time of Firoz Shah. Bains is one of the 36 royal families of Rajputs, but Tod believes that; it is merely a sab-division of the Suryabansi section. They give their name to Baiswara, or the easternmost portion of the Ganges-Jamna doab. The Sardars of Alawalpur in Jullundur are Bains, whose ancestor came from Hoshidrpur to Jalla near Sirhind in Nabha some twelve generations ago.


The Bairagi.

Bairagi (बैरागी). — The Bairagi (Vairagi, more correctly, from Sanskrit vairagya, 'devoid of passion,') is a devotee of Vishnu. The Bairgis probably represent a very old element in Indian religion, for those of the sect who wear a leopard-skin doubtless do so as personating Nar Singh, the leopard incarnation of Vishnu, just as the Bhagauti faqir imitates the dress,†† dance, etc., of Krishna. The priest who personates the god whom he worships is found in 'almost every rude religion : while in later cults the old rite survives at least in the religious use of animal masks,'§ a practice still to be found in Tibet. There is, moreover, an undoubted pun on the word bhrag, 'leopard ', and Bairagi, and this possibly acfounts for the wearing of the leopard skin. The feminine form of Bairagi, bairagan, is the term applied to the tau-shaped crutch on which a devotee leans either sitting or standing, to the small emblematic crutch about a foot long, and to the crutch hilt of a sword or dagger. In Jind the Bairagi is said to be also called Shami.

The orders devoted to the cults of Ram and Krishn are known generically as Bairagis, and their history commences with Ramanuja, who taught in Southern India in the ll-12th centuries, and from his name the designation Ramamuji may be derived. But it is not until the time of Ramanand, i.e., until the end of the 14th century, that the sect rose to power or importance in Northern India.

The Bairagis are divided into four main orders (sampardas , viz., Ramdnandi, Vishnuswami, Nimanandi and Madhavachari.

* -Fancifully derived from baid, a pbysician — who rescued a bride of the clan from robbers and was rewarded by their adopting his name.
† The Bains hold a barah or group of 12 (actuaily 15 or 16) villages near Mahilpur in this District.
†† - Trumpp's Adi-Granth. p. 98.
§ Robertson Smith : Religion of the Semites, p. 437.
‖ -See Ibbetson, § 521 : where the Ramanujis are said to worship Mahadeo and thus appear to be Shaivas. Further the Bairagis are there said to have been founded by SriAnand, the 12th disciple of Ramanand. The termination nandi appears to be connected with his name. It is only to the followers of Ramanand or his contemporaries that the term Bairagis properly applied.
The Bairagi caste

Of these the first-named contains six of the 52 dwaras* (schools) of these Bairagi orders, viz., the Anbhimandi, Dundaram, Agarji, Telaji, Kubhaji, and Ramsaluji.

In the Punjab only two of the four sampardas are usually found. These are (i) the Ramanandis, who like the Vishnuswamis are devotees of Ramchandr, and accordingly celebrate his birthday, the Ramnaumi, study the Ramayana and make pilgrimages to Ajudhia : their insignia being the tar pundri or trident, marked on the forehead in white, with the central prong in red or white.

The only other group found in the Punjab is (ii) the Nimanandi, who, like the Madhavacharis, are devotees of Krishna. They too celebrate the 8th of Bhadon as the date of Krishna's incarnation, but they study the Sri Madh Bhagwat and the Gita, and regard Bindraban, Mathra and Dwarkanath as sacred places. On their foreheads they wear a two-pronged fork,††all in white.

In the Punjab proper, however, even the distinction between Rama and Nima-nandi is of no importance, and probably hardly known. In parts of the country the Bairagis form a veritable caste being allowed to marry, and [e.g.] in Sirsa they are hardly to be distinguished from ordinary peasants, while in Karnal many (excluding the sadhus or monks of the monasteries, asthal, whose property descends to their spiritual children§) marry and their hindu or natural children succeed them. This latter class is mainly recruited from the Jats, but the caste is also recruited from the three twice-born castes, the disciple being received into his guru's samparda and dwara. In some tracts, e.g. , in Jind, the Bairagis are mostly secular. They avoid in marriage their own samparda and their mother's dwara. In theory any Bairagi may take food from any other Bairagi, but in practice a Brahman Bairdgi will only eat from the hands of another Brahman, and it is only at the ghosti or place of religious assembly that recruits of all castes can eat together. The restrictions regarding food and drink are however lax throughout the order. Though the Bairagis, as a rule, abstain from flesh and spirits, the secular members of the caste certainly do not. In the southern Punjab the Bairagi is often addicted to bhang.

To return to the Bairagis as an order, it would appear that as a body they keep the jata or long hair, wear coarse loin-cloths and usually affect the suffix Das. As opposed to the Saniasis, or Lal-padris, they style themselves Sita-padris, as worshippers of Sita Ram.

*It may be conjectured that the Valabhacharis, Biganandis, and Nimi-Kharak-swamis are three of these dwaras : or the latter term may be equivalent to Nimanandi. Possibly the Sita-padris are really a modern dwara. The Radha-balabhi, who affect Krishna's wife Radha, can hardly be anything but a dwara.
The 9th of Bhadon.
†† Its shape is siid to be derived from the figure of the Nar Singh (man-lion) incarnation which tore Pralad to pieces.
§ Called nadi, is contradistinction to hindu children. Celibate Bairagis are called Nagas, the secular ghar-basi or ahirishi, i.e. , householders.
It is not clear how property descends, e.g. it is said that if a guru marry his property descends on his death to his disciples, in Jind (just as it, does in Karnal. But apparently property inherited from the natural family devolves on the natural children, while that inherited from the quru descends to the chela. In the Kaithal tahsil of Karnal the agricultural Bairaigis who own the village of Dig are purely secular.
  • ' But men of any caste may become Bairagis and the order appears, as a rule, to be recruited from the lower castes.
Bairagi developments

As regards his tenets a Bairagi is sometimes said to be subject to five rules : —

  • (i) he must journey to Dwarka and there be branded with iron on the right arm :*
  • (ii) he must mark his forehead, as already described, with the gopi chandan clay :
  • (iii) he must invoke one of the incarnations of Krishna:
  • (iv) he must wear a rosary of tulsi : and
  • (v) he should know and repeat some mantra relating to one of Vishnu's incarnations.

Probably these tenets vary in details, though not in principle, for each samparda, and possibly for each dwara also.

The monastic communities of the Bairagis are powerful and exceedingly well conducted, often very wealthy, and exercise much hospitality. They are numerous in Hoshiarpur. Some of their mahants are well educated and even learned men, and a few possess a knowledge of Sanskrit.

Bairagi developments.

The intense vitality of the Bairagi teachings maybe gauged from the number of sub-sects tn which they have given birth. Among these may be noted the Hari-Dasis (in Rohtak), the Kesho-panthist (in Multan) the Tulsi-Dasis, Gujranwala, the Murar-panthis††, the Baba-Lalis.

The connection of the earliest form of Sikhism with the Bairagi doctrines is obscure, but it is clear that it was a close one. Kalladhari the ancestor of the Bedi family of Una, was also the predecessor of the Brahman Kalladhari mahants of Dharmsal in the Una tahsil, who are Bairagis, as well as followers of Nanak, whence they are called Vaishav-Nanak-panthi. This community was founded by one Nakodar Das who in his youth was absorbed in the deity while lying in the shade of a banyan tree instead of tending his cattle, and at last after a prolonged period of adoration, disappeared into the unknown. Another Bairagi, Ram Thamman, was a cousin of Nanak and is sometimes claimed as his follower. His tank near Lahore is the scene of a fair, held at the Baisakhi, and formerly notorious for disturbances and, it is said, immoralities. It is still a great meeting point for Bairagi ascetics. Further it will not be forgotten that Banda, the successor of the Sikh gurus, was, originally, a Bairagi, while two Bairagi sub-sects (the Sarndasi and Simrandasi§) arc sometimes classed as Udasis.

A modern offshoot of the Bairagis are the Charandasis, founded by one Charan Das who was born at Dehra in Alwar State in 1703. His father was a Dhusar who died when his so-j, then named Ranjit Singh, was only 5. Brought up by relations at Delhi the boy became a

* These brands include the conch shell (shankh) ,discus or Chakkar, club or gada, and lotus. Besides the iron brands (tapt mudara, lit. fire-marks) watermarks (sital mudra, lit. cold-marks) are also used. Further the initiatory rite, though often performed at Dwarka, may be performed anywhere especially in the guru's house. Some Bairagis even brand their women's arms before they will eat or drink anything touched by them.
probably worshippers of a local saint or of Krishna himself.
†† Possibly followers of a Baba Murar whose shrine is in Lahore District, or worshippers of Krishn Murari, i.e., the enemy of Mura demon.
§ Sometimes said to be one and the same. Simran Das was a Brahman, who lived two centuries ago, and his followers are Gosains who wear the tulsi necklace and worship their gurus bed.
Another account says he became Sukhdeo's disciple at the age of 10 in Sbt. 1708, 1651 A. D. For a full account of the sect see Wilson's quoted in Maclagan's, Punjab Census Report, 1891, p. 121.


disciple of Sukhdeo Das, himself a spiritual descendant of Biasji, in Muzaffarnagar, and assumed the name of Charan Das. He taught the unity of God, preached abolition of caste and inculcated purity of life. His three principal disciples, Swami Ram-rup, Jagtan Gosain and a woman named Shahgoleai ench founded a monastery in Delhi, in which city there is also a temple dedicated to Charan Das where the impression of his foot (charan) is worshipped.* His initiates are celibate and worship Krishna and his favourite queen Radha above all gods and goddesses. They wear on the forehead the joti sarup or "body of flame," which consists of a single perpendicular line of white; and dress in saffron clothes with a tulsi necklace. The chief scripture of the sect is the Bhagat-sāgar, and the 11th day of each fortnight is kept as a fast. Charan Das is believed to have displayed miracles before Nadir Shah, on his conquest of Delhi, and however that may be, his disciples obtained grants of land from the Mughal emperors which they still hold.


  • Bairwal (बैरवाल), a tribe of Jats who claim to be descendants of Birkhman, a Chauhan Rajput, whose son married a Jat girl as his second wife and so lost status. The name is eponymous, and they are found in the Bawal Nizamat of Nabha.
  • Baistola (बैस्तोला), a Jain sect : see Jain.
  • Baizai (बैजई), one of the two clans of the Akozai Yusafzai. It originally held the Lundkhwar valley, in the centre of the northernmost part of Peshawar, and all the eastern hill country between that and the Swat river. It still holds the hills, but the Khattak now hold all the west of the valley and the Utman Khel its north-east corner, so that the Baizai only hold a small tract to the south of these last. Their six septs are the Abba and Aziz Khels, the Babozai, Matorezai, Musa and Zangi Khels. The last lies south of the Ilam range which divides Swat from Buner. Only the three first-named hold land in British territory.
  • Bajarah (बजारह), One of the 15 Awan families descended from Kulugan, son of Qutb Shah: see History of Sialkot, p. 37.
  • Baju (बजु); Bajju (बज्जु), a Rajput tribe found in Sialkot and allied to the Bajwa Jats.
  • Bajwa (बाजवा), a Jat clan (agricultural) found in Sialkot, Amritsar and Multan, and as a Hindu Jat clan in Montgomery. The Bajwa Jats are of the same kin as the Bajju Rajputs.†† In Sialkot they have the customs of rasoa or lagan and bhoja twixt betrothal and marriage. The jathera of the Bajwa is Baba Manga, and he is revered at weddings, at which the rites of jandian and chhatra are also observed.
Tlie Bajwa Jats and Bajju Rajputs have given their name to the Bajwat or country at the foot of the Jammu hills in the Sialkot District. They say that they are Solar Rajputs and that their ancestor Raja

* Clearly there is some connection here with the Vishnupad or foot-impression of Vishnu.
It is also called simply sarup, or "body" of Bhagwan.
†† It might be suggested that is a diminutive form.

Bajwa — Bakhtiar

Shalip was driven out of Multan in the time of Sikandar Lodi. His two sons Kals and Lis escaped in the disguise of falconers. Lis went to Jammu and there married a Katil Rajput bride, while Kals married a Jat girl in Pasrur. The descendants of both live in the Bajwāiit, but are said to be distinguished as Bajju Rajputs and Bajwa Jats. Another story has it that their ancestor Jas or Rai Jaisan was driven from Delhi by Rai Pithora and settled at Karbala in Sialkot. Yet another tale is that Naru, Raja of Jammu, gave him 84 villages in ilaqa Ghol for killing Mir Jagwa, a mighty Pathan. The Bajju Rajputs admit their relationship with the Bajwa Jats. Kals had a son, Dawa, whose son Dewa had three sons, Muda, Wasr, and Nana surnamed Chachrah. Nana'a children having all died, he was told by an astrologer that only those born under a chachri tree would live. His advice was taken and Nana's next son founded the Chachrah sept, chiefly found near Narowal. The Bajju Rajputs have the custom of chundavand and are said to marry their daughters to Chibh , Bhau and Manhas Rajputs, and their eons to Rajputs. The Bajju Rajputs are said to have had till quite lately a custom by which a Mussalman girl could be turned into a Hindu for purposes o£ marriage, by temporarily burying her in an underground chamber and ploughing the earth over her head. In the betrothals of this tribe dates aroused, a custom perhaps brought with them from Multan, and they have several other singular customs resembling those of the Sahi Jats. They are almost confined to Sialkot, though they have spread in small numbers eastwards as far as Patiala.

  • Bakhri (बाखरी), a clan found in the Shahr Farid ilaqa of Bahawalpur. They claim to be Sumras by origin, and have Charan bards, which points to a Rajput origin. They migrated from Bhakhkhar to Multan, where they were converted to Islam by Gaus Baha-ud-Din Zakaria, and fearing to return to their Hindu kinsmen settled down in Multan as weavers. Thence they migrated to Nurpur, Pakpattan and other places, and Farid Khan I settled some of them in Shahr Farid from Nurpur. They make lungis. (The correct form is probably Bhakhri).
  • Bakhshial (बख्शिआल), a family of Wahora Khatris, settled at Bhaun in Jhelum, which has a tradition of military service.
Raverty however disputes this, and ascribes to the Bakhtiars a Sayyid origin. Shiran, the eponym of the Shirani Pathdns, gave a daughter to a Sayyid Ishaq whose son by her was named Habib the Abu-Sa'id, or 'Fortunate' (Bakhtyar). This son was adopted by his step-father Mianai, son of Dom, a son of Shiraz. The Bakhtiars have produced several saints, among them the Makhdum-i-'Alam, Khwaja Yahya-i-Kabir, son of Khwaja llias, son of Sayyid Muhammad, and a contemporary of Sultan Muhammad Tughluq Shah. He died in
Bakhtiar — Balka
1333 A.D., and his descendants are called Shaikhzais. Raverty says the Persian Bakhtiaris* are quite distinct from the Bakhtiars.
  • Bakhtmal sadhs (बख्त्मल-साध), a Sikh sect founded by one Bakhtmal. When Guru Govind Singh destroyed the masands or tax-gatherers one of them, by name Bakhtmal, took refuge with Mata, a Gujar woman who disguised him in woman's clothes, putting bangles on his wrists and a nath or nose-ring in his nose. This attire he adopted permanently and the mahant of his gaddi still wears bangles. His followers are said to be also called Bakhshish sadhs, but this is open to doubt. The head-quarters of the sect appears to be unknown.
  • Bal (बल), a Jat tribe of the Bias and Upper Sutlej, said to be a clan of the Sekhu tribe with whom they do not intermarry. Their ancestor is also said to have been named Baya Bal, a Rajput who came from Malwa. The name Bal, which means " strength," is a famous one in ancient Indian history, and recurs in all sorts of forms and places. In Amritsar they say they came from Ballamgarh, and do not inter-marry with the Dhillon.
  • Balagan (बलगन), a tribe of Jats, claiming to be Jammu Rajputs by descent from their eponym. Found in Sialkot.
  • Balahar (बलाहर), in Gurgaon the balahar (in Sirsa he is called daura,) is a village menial who shows travellers the way, carries messages and letters, and summons people when wanted by the headmen. In Karnal he is, called lehbar ; but is not a recognised menial and any one can perform his duties on occasion. In Sirsa, Gurgaon and Karnal he is almost always a Chuhra, cf. Batwal.
  • Balahi (बलाही), Balai (बलाई), cf. (Balahar). — In Delhi and Hissar a chaukidar or watchman : in Sirsa a Chamar employed to manure fields, or who takes to syce's and general work, is so termed.
  • Balbir (बलबीर), a sept of Kanets which migrated from Chittor in Rajasthan with the founders of Keonthal and settled in the latter State. The founders of Keonthal were also accompanied by a Chaik, a Salathi and a Pakrot, all Brahmans, a Chhibar Kanet, a blacksmith and a turi and the descendants of all these are still settled in the State or in its employ.
  • Bali (बाली), an agricultural clan found in Shahpur.
  • Bali (बाली), a section of the Muhials (Brahmans) : corr. to the Dhannapotras of the South-West Punjab.
  • Balka (बलका), an agricultural clan found in Shahpur: balka in the east of the Punjab is used as equivalent to chela, for ' the disciple of a 'faqlr.'

* There is said to be a sept of the Baloch of this name in Bahawalpur and Muzaffargarhi on both sides of the Panjnad.
Or rehbar, probably from rahbar, 'guide'. In Karnal is no Balahar caste, the term being applied to a sweeper who does this particular kind of corvee— which no one but a sweeper (or in default a Dhanank) will perform.
  • Balmiki (बाल्मीकी), Valmiki (वाल्मीकी). — The sect of the Chuhras, synonymous with Balashahi and Lalbegi, so called from Balmik, Balrikh or Bala Shah, possibly the same as the author of the Ramayana* Balmik, the poet, was a man of low extraction, and legend represents him as a low-caste hunter of the Nardak in Karnal, or a Bhil highway-man converted by a saint whom he was about to rob. One legend makes him a sweeper in the heavenly courts, another as living in austerity at Ghazni. See under Lalbegi.


Baloch (बलोच)- Meaning of Baloch.

The term Baloch is used in several different wavs. By travellers and historians it is employed to denote (i) the race known to them-selves and their neighbours as the Baloch, and [ii] in an extended sense as including all the the races inhabiting the great geographical area shown on our maps as Balichistan. In the latter sense it comprises the Brahuis, a tribe which is certainly not of Baloch origin. In the former sense it includes all the Baloch tribes, whether found in Persia on the west or the Puniab on the east, which can claim a descent, more or less pure, from Baloch ancestors. Two special uses of the term also require notice. In the great jungles below Thanesar - in the Karnal district is settled a criminal tribe, almost certainly of Baloch extraction, which will be noticed below page 55. Secondly, throughout the Punjab, except in the extreme west and the extreme east, the term Baloch denotes any Muhammadan camel-man. Throughout the upper grazing grounds of the Western Plains the Baloch settlers have taken to the grazing and breeding of camels rather than to husbandry; and thus the word Baloch has become associated with the care of camels, insomuch that in the greater part of the Punjab, the word Baloch is used for any Musalman camel-man whatever be his caste, every Baloch being supposed to be a camel-man and every Muhammadan camel-man to be a Baloch,

Origins of the Baloch

Pnttinger and Khanikoff claimed for the Baloch race a Turkoman origin, and Sir T. Holdich and others an Arab descent. Bellew assigned them Rajput descent on very inadequate philological grounds, while Burton, Lassen and others have maintained that they are, at least in the mass, of Iranian race. This last theory is supported by Mr. Longworth Dames who shows that the Baloch came into the present locations in Mekran and on the Indian border from parts of the Iranian plateau further to the west and north, bringing with them a language of the Old Persian stock, with many features derived from the Zend or Old Bactrian rather than the Western Persian.

History of the Baloch.

Dames assigns the first mention of the Baloch in history to the Arabic chronicles of the 10th century A. D., but Firdausi (c. 400 A.H.) refers to a still earlier period, and in his Shah-nama†† the Baloches are described as forming part of the armies of Kai Kaus

* Temple (in Legends of the Punjab, I, p. 529) accepts this tradtion and says Balmiki is the same as Bala Shah or Nuri Shah Bala, but assigns to him 'the place next to Lal Beg.'
This group is also found in Ambala, and the Giloi Baloch of Lyallpur are also said to be an offshoot of it.
†† So Dames, but the text of the Shah-nama is very corrupt, and the reading Khoch "crest " cannot be relied upon implicit.

Baloch history

and Kai Khusrao. The poem says that the army of Ashkash was from the wanderers of the Koch and Baloch, intent on war, with exalted coekscomb crests, whose back none in the world ever saw. Under Naushirwan, the Cosroes who fought against Justinian, the Baloch are again mentioned as mountaineers who raided his kingdom and had to be exterminated, though later on we find them serving in Naushirwan's own army. In these passages their association with the men of Gil and Dailam (the peoples of Gilan and Adharbaijan) would appear to locate the Baloch in a province north of Karman towards the Caspian Sea.

However this may be, the commencement of the 4th century of the Hijra and of the 10th A.D. finds the Balus or Baloch established in Karman, with, if Masudi can be trusted, the Qufs (Koch) and the Zutt (Jatts). The Baloch are then described as holding the desert plains south of the mountains and towards Makran and the sea, but they appear in reality to have infested the desert now known as the Lut, which lies north and east of Karman and separates it from Khorasan and Sistan. Thence they crossed the desert into the two last-named provinces, and two districts of Sistan were in Istakhri's time known as Baloch country.* Baloch raiders plundered Mahmud of Ghazhni's ambassador between Tabbas and Khabis, and in revenge his son Masud defeated them at the latter place, which lies at the foot of the Karman Mountains on the edge of the desert.

About this time Firdausi wrote and soon after it the Baloch must have migrated bodily from Karman into Mekran and the Sindh frontier, after a partial and temporary halt in Sistan. With great probability Dames conjectures that at this period two movements of the Baloch took place : the first, corresponding with the Saljuq invasion and the overthrow of the Dailami and Ghaznawi power in Persia, being their abandonment of Karman and settlement in Sistan and Western Makran ; while the second, towards Eastern Makran and the Sindh border, was contemporaneous with Changiz Khan's invasion and the wanderings of Jalal-ud-Din in Makran.

To this second movement the Baloch owed their opportunity of invading the Indus valley; and thence, in their third and last migration, a great portion of the race was precipitated into the Punjab plains.

It is now possible to connect the traditional history of the Baloch themselves, as told in their ancient heroic ballads, with the above account. Like other Muhammadan races, the Baloch claim Arabian extraction, asserting that they are descended from Mir Hamza, an uncle of the Prophet, and from a fairy (pari). They consistently place their first settlement in Halab (Aleppo), where they remained until, siding with the sons of Ali and taking part in the battle of Karbala, they were expelled by Yazid, the second of the Omayyad Caliphs, in 680 A.D. Thence they fled, first to Karman, and eventually

* Their settlements may indeed have extended into Khorasan. Even at the present day there is a considerable Baloch population as far north as Turbat-i-Haidari (Curzon's Persia, 1892, i, p. 203),
Baloch history

to Sistan where they wore hospitably received by Shams-ud-Din,* ruler of that country. His successor, Badr-ud-Din, demanded, according to eastern usage, a bride from each of the 44 bolaks or clans of the Baloch. But the Baloch race had never yet paid tribute in this form to any ruler, and they sent therefore 44 bovs dressed in girls' clothes and fled before the deception could be discovered. Badr-ud-Din sent the boys back but pursued the Baloch, who had fled south-eastwards, into Kech-Makran where he was defeated at their hands.

At this period Mir Jalal Khan, son of Jiand, was ruler of all the Baloch. He left four sons, Rind, Lashar, Hot and Korai from whom are descended the Rind, Lashari, Hot and Korai tribes ; and a son-in-law, Murad, from whom are descended the Jatoi or children of Jato, Jalal Khan's daughter. Unfortunately, however, certain tribes cannot be brought into any of these five, and in order to provide them with ancestors two more sons, Ali and Bulo, ancestor of the Buledhi, have had to be found for Jalal Khan. From Ali's two sons, Ghazan and Umar, are descended the Ghazani, Harris and the scattered Umranis.

Tradition avers that Jalal Khan had appointed Rind to the phagh or turban of chiefship, but that Hot refused to join him in creating the asrokh or memorial canopy to their father. 'Thereupon each performed that ceremony separately and thus there were five asrokhs in Kech.' But it is far more probable that five principal gatherings of clans were formed under well-known leaders, each of which became known by some nickname or epithet, such as rind "cheat," hot, "warrior," Lashari, " men of Lashar" and, later, Buledhi, " men of Boleda." To these other clans became in the course of time affiliated.

A typical example of an affiliated clan is afforded by the Dodai, a clan of Jat race whose origin is thus described : —

Doda†† Sumra, expelled from Thatha by his brethren, escaped by swimming his mare across the Indus, and, half frozen, reached the hut of Salhe, a Rind. To revive him Salhe placed him under the blankets with his daughter Muaho, whom he eventually married. " For the woman's sake," says the proverb, " the man became a Baloch who had been a Jatt, a Jaghdal, a nobody; he dwelt at Harrand under the hills, and fate made him chief of all." Thus Doda; founded the great Dodai tribe of the Baloch, and Gorish, his son, founded the Gorshani or Gurchdni, now the principal tribe of Dodai origin. The great Mirrani tribe, which for 200 years gave chiefs to Dera Ghazi Khan, was also of Dodai origin.

* According to Dames there was a Shams-ud-Din, independent malik of Sistan, who claimed descent from the Saffaris of Persia and who died in 1104 A.D. ;559 H.) or nearly 500 years after the Baloch migration from Aleppo. Badr-ud-Uin appears to be unknown to history.
It is suggested that Jatoi or 'husband of a Jat woman,' just as bahnoi means ' husband of a sister,' although in Jatoi the 't' is soft.
†† Doda, a common name among the Sumras whose dynasty ruled Sindh until it was overthrown by the Sammas. About 1250 A.D. or before that year we find Baloch adventurers first allied with the Sodhas and Jharejas, and then supporting Doda IV, Sumra, Under Umar, his successor, the Baloches are found combining with the Sammas, Sodhas and Jatts, (Jharejas), but were eventually forced back to the hills without effecting any permanent lodgment in the plains.

Baloch history

After the overthrow of the Sumras of Sindh nothing is heard of the Baloch for 150 years and then in the reign of Jam Tughlaq, the Samma (1423 — 50), they are recorded as raiding near Bhakhar in Sindh. Doubtless, as Dames holds, Taimur's invasion of 1399 led indirectly to this new movement. The Delhi empire was at its weakest and Taimur's descendants claimed a vague suzereignty over it. Probably all the Western Punjab was effectively held by Mughal intendants until the Lodi dynapty was established in 1451. Meanwhile the Langah Rajputs had established themselves on the throne of Multan and Shah Husain Langah (1469 — 1502) called in Baloch mercenaries, granting a jagir, which extended from Kot Karor to Dhankot, to Malik Sohrab Dodai who came to Multan with his sons, Ghazi Khan, Fath Khan and Ismail Khan.*

But the Dodai were, not the only mercenaries of the Langahs. Shah Hussain had conferred the jagirs of Uch and Shor(kot) on two Samma brothers, Jam Bayazid and Jam Ibrahim, between whom and the Dodais a feud arose on Shah Mahmud's accession. The Jams promptly allied themselves with Mir Chakur, a Rind Baloch of Sibi who had also sought service and lands from the Langah ruler and thereby mused the Dodais' jealousy. Mir Chakur is the greatest figure in the heroic poetry of the Baloch, and his history is a. renarkable one. The Rinds were at picturesque but deadly feud with the Lasharis. Gohar, the fair owner of vast herds of camels favoured Chakur, but Gwaharam Lashari also claimed her hand. The rivals agreed to decide their quarrel by a horse race, but the Rinds loosened the girths of Gwahardm's saddle and Chakur won. In revenge the Lasharis killed some of Gohar's camels, and this led to a desperate 30 years' war which ended in Chakur's expulsion from Sibi in spite of aid invoked and received from the Arghun conquerors of Sindh. Mir Chakur was accompanied by many Rinds and by his two sons, Shahzad and Shaihak, and received in jagir lands near Uch from Jam Bayazid, Samma. Later, however, he is said in the legends to have accompanied Humayun en his re-conquest of India. However this may have been, he undoubtedly founded a military colony of Rinds at Satgarha, in Montgomery, at which place his tomb still exists. Thence he was expelled by Sher Shah, a fact which would explain his joining Humayun.

At this period the Baloch were in great force in the South-West Punjab, probably as mercenaries of the Langah dynasty of Multan, but also as independent freebooters. The Rinds advanced up the Chenab, Ravi and Sutlej valleys; the Dodai and Hots up the Jhelum and Indus. In 1519 Babar found Dodais at Bhera and Khushab and he confirmed Sohrab Khan's three sons in their possession of the country of Sindh. He also gave Ismail Khan, one of Sohrdb's sons, the ancient pargana of Ninduna in the Ghakhar country in exchange for the lands of Shaikh Bayazid Sarwani which he was obliged to surrender. But in 1524 the Arghuns overthrew Shah Mahmad Langah.

* The founders of the three Dehras, which give its name to the Derajāt. Dera Fath Khan is now a mere village.
Shahzad was one of miraculous origin, his mother having been overshadowed by some mysterious power, and a mystical poem in Balochi on the origins of Multan is ascribed to him. Firishta says he first introduced the Shia creed into Multan. a curious statement.

Baloch organization

with bis motley host of Baloch, Jat, Rind, Dodai and other tribes, and the greatest confusion reigned.

The Arghuns however submitted to the Mughal emperors, and this appears to have thrown the bulk of the Baloch into opposition to the empire. They rarely entered the imperial service — a fact which is possibly explained by their dislike to serve at a distance from their homes — and under Akbar we read of occasional expeditions against the Baloch. But the Lasharis apparently took service with the Arghuns and aided them against Jam Firoz — indeed legend represents the Laghari as invading Guzerat and on return to Kachhi as obtaining a grant of Gundava from the king.* The Jistanis, a Lashari clan, also established a principality at Mankera in the Sindh-Sagar Doab at this time, but most of the Lasharis remained in Makran or Kachhi. Among the earliest to leave the barren hills of Balochistan were the Chandias who settled in the Chandko or Chanduka tract along the Indus, in Upper Sind on the Punjab border. The Hots pressed northwards and with the Dodais settled at Dera Ismmail Khan which they held for 200 years. Close to it; the Kulachis founded the town which still bears their name. Both Dera Ismail Khan and Kulachi were eventually conquered by Pathans, but the Kulachis still inhabit the country round the latter town. South of the Jistkanis of Mankera lay the Dodais of the once great Mirrani clan which gave Nawabs to Dera Ghazi Khan till Nadir Shah's time. Further still afield the Mazaris settled in Jhang and are still found at Chatta Bakhsha in that District, The Rinds with some Jatois and Korais are numerous in Multan, Jhang, Montgomery, Shahpur and Muzaffargarh, and in the last-named district the Gopangs and Gurmanis are encountered. All these are descendants of the tribes which followed Mir Chakur and have become assimilated to the Jat tribes with whom in many cases they intermarry. West of the Indus only has the Baloch retained his own language and tribal organization.

In the Derajat and Sulaimans the Baloch are grouped into tumans which cannot be regarded as mere tribes. The tuman is infact a political confederacy, ruled by a tumandar, and comprising men of one tribe, with affliated elements from other tribes not necessarily Baloch. The tumans which now exist as Organisations are the Marri, Bughti, Mazari, Drishak, Tibbi Lund, Sori Lund, Leghari, Khosa, Nutkani, Bozdar, Kasrani, Gurchani and Shambuni. Others, such as the Buledhi, Hasani, Jakrani, Kahiri, are found in the Kachhi territory of Kalat and in Upper Sind, with representatives in Bahawalpur territory.

The Bozdar tuman is probably in part of Rind descent, but the name means simply goat-herd. They live in independent territory in the Sulaimdns, almost entirely north-west of Dera Ghazi Khan.

The Bughti or Zarkani tuman is composed of several elements. Mainly of Rind origin it claims descent from Gyandar, a cousin of Mir Chakur. The Raheja, a clan with an apparently Indian name, is said to have been founded by Raheja, a son of Gyandar. The Nothani

* The Maghassis, a branch of the Lasharis, are still found in Kachh Gundāva.
Chandias are also numerous in Mzafargarh and Dera Ismail Khan.

The Baloch tumans

clan holds the guardianship of Pir Sohri's shrine though they have admitted Gurchani to a share in that office, and before an expedition , each man passes under a yoke of guns or swords held by men of the clan. They can also charm guns so that the bullets shall be harmless,* and claim for these services a share of all crops grown in the Bughti country.

The Shambanis, who form a sub-tuman, but are sometimes classed as an independent tuman, trace their descent to Rihan, a cousin of Mir Chakur, and occupy the hill country adjacent to the Bughti and Mazari tumans. The Bughti occupy the angle of the Sulaiman Mountains between the Indus and Kachhi and have their head-quarters at Syahaf (also called Dera Bibrak or Bughti Dera).

The Buledhi or Burdi tuman derives its name from Boleda in Makran and was long the ruling race till ousted by the Gichki. It is also found in the Burdika tract on the Indus, in Upper Sindh and in Kachhi.

The Drishak tuman is said to be descended from one of Mir Chakur's companions who was nicknanied Drishak or 'strong' because he held up a roof that threatened to crush some Lashari women captives, but it is possibly connected with Dizak in Makran. Its head-quarters are at Asni in Dera Ghazi Khan.

The Gurchani tuman is mainly Dodai by origin, but the Syahphad Durkani are Rinds; as are probably the Pitafi, Jogani, and Chang clans — at least in part. The Jistkanis and Lasharis (except the Gabol and Bhand sections) are Lasharis, while the Suhriani and Holawani are Bulethis. The Gurchani head-quarters are at Lalgarh near Harrand in Dera Ghazi Khan.

Kasrani†† (so pronounced, but sometimes written Qaisarani as descended from Qaisar) is a tuman of Rind descent and is the most northerly of all the organised tumans, occupying part of the Sulaimans and the adjacent plains in Deras Ghazi Khan (and formerly, but not now), Ismail Khan.

The Khosas form two great tumans,§ one near Jacobabad in Upper Sindh, the other with its head- quarters at Batil near Dera Ghazi Khan. They are said to be mainly of Hot descent, but in Dera Ghazi Khan the Isani clan is Khetran by origin, and the small Jajela clan are probably aborigines of the Jaj valley which they inhabit.

The Legrhari tuman derives its origin from Kohphrosh, a Rind, nicknamed Leghar or 'dirty.' But the tuman also includes a Chandia clan and the Haddiani and Kaloi, the sub-tuman of the mountains, are said to be of Bozdar origin. Its head-quarters are at Choti in Dera Ghazi Khan, but it is also found in Sindh.

* The following Baloch septs can stop bleeding by charms and touching the wounds, and used also to have the power of bewitching the arms of their enemies : — The Bajani sept of the Durkani, the Jabrani sept of the Lashari, and the Girani sept of the Jaskani ; among the Gurchanis : the Shahmani sept of the Hadiani Legharis, and, among the Khosas, the Chitar and Faqirs.
A servile tribe, now of small importance, found mainly in Muzaffargarh.
†† The Qasranis practise divination from the shoulder-blades of sheep (an old Mughal custom) and also take auguries from the flight of birds.
§ The Khosas also form a sub-tuman of the Rinds of Shoran and a clan of the Lunds of Tibbi.

Baloch tribes

The Lunds form two tumans, one of Sori, with its head -quarters at Kot Kandiwala, the other at Tibbi, both in Dera Ghazi Khan. Both claim descent- from Ali, son of Rihan, Mir Chakur's cousin. The Son Lunds include a Gurchani clan and form a large tuman, living in the plains, but the Tibbi Lunds are a small tuman to which are affiliated a clan of Khosas and one of Rinds — the latter of impure descent.

The Marri tuman, notorious for its marauding habits which necessitated an expedition against it only in 1880, is of composite origin.

The Ghazani section claims descent from Ghazan, son of Ali, son of Jalal Khan and the Bijaranis from Bijar Phuzh* who revolted against Mir Chakur. The latter probably includes some Pathan elements. The Mazaranis are said to be Khetrans, and the Loharanis of mixed blood, while Jatt, Kalmati, Buledhi and Hasani elements have doubtless been also absorbed.

The Mazaris are an organised clan of importance, with head-quarters at Rojhan in Dera Ghazi Khan. Its ruling sept, the Balachani, is said to be Hot by descent, but the rest of the tribe are Rinds. The name is derived apparently from mazar, a tiger, like the Pathan 'Mzarai.'

The Kirds or Kurds, a powerful Brahui tribe, also furnish a clan to the Mazaris. The Mazaris as a body (excluding the Balachanis) are designated Syah-laf, or 'Black-bellies.'

Other noteworthy tribes, not organized as tumans, are —

The Ahmdanis ofMana, in Dera Ghazi Khan. They claim descent from Gyandar and were formerly of importance.

The Gishkauris, found scattered in Dera Ismail Khan, Muzaffargarh and Mekran, and claiming descent from one of Mir Chukur's Rind companions, nick-named Gishkhaur, But the Gishkhaur is really a torrent in the Boleda Valley, Mekran, and possibly the clan is of common descent with the Buledhi.††

Talpur or Talbur, a clan of the Leghdris, is, by some, derived from its eponym, a son of Bulo, and thus of Buledhi origin. Its principal representatives are the Mirs of Khairpur in Sind, but a few Talpurs are still found in Dera Ghazi Khan. Talbur literally means 'wood-cutter' (fr. tāl, branch, and buragh, to cut).

The Pitafis, a clan found in considerable numbers in [[Dera Ismail Khan]] and Muzaffargarh§. Pitafi would appear to mean 'Southern.'

The Nutkani or Nodhakani, a compact tribe, organized till quite recently as a tuman, and found in Sangarh, Dera Ghazi Khan District.

The Mashori, an impure clan, now found mainly in Muzaffargarh.

The Mastoi, probably a servile tribe, found principally in [[Dera Ghazi Khzn]] where it has no social status.

* The Phuzh are or were a clan of Rinds, once of great importance --indeed the whole Rind tribe is said to have once been called Phuzh. They are now only found at Kolanah in Mekran, in Kachhi and near the Bolan Pass. ui
Large Ahmdani clans are also found among the Lunds of Sori and the Haddiani Leghanis.
†† The Lashari sub-tuman of the Gurohani also includes a Gishkhauri sept, and the Dombkis nave a clan of that name.
§ Also as a Gurchani clan in Dera Ghazi Khan. The Bughtis have a Masori clan.

Baloch tribes

The Dashti, another servile tribe, now found scattered in small numbers iu Dera Ismail Khan and Dera Ghazi Khan, in Muzaffargarh and Bahawalpur.

The Gopang, or more correctly Gophank [ic. gophanh, 'cowherd'), also a servile tribe, now scattered over Kachhi, Dera Ismail Khan, Multan and Muzaffargarh, especially the latter.

The Hot (Hut) once a very powerful tribe (still so in Mekran) and widely spread wherever Baloches are found, but most numerous in Dera Ismail Khan, Muzaffargarh, Jhang and Multan.

The Jatoi, not now an organized tribe, but found wherever Baloches have spread, i.e., in all the Districts of the South-West Punjab and as far as Jhang, Shahpur and Lahore.

The Korai or Kaudai, not now an organized tuman, but found wherever Baloches have spread, especially in Dera Ismail Khan, Multan and Muzaffargarh.

The history of the Baloch is an instructive illustration of the transformations to which tribes or tribal confederacies are prone. The earliest record of their organisation represents them as divided into 44 bolaks of which 4 were servile.

But as soon as history begins we find the Baloch nation split up into 5 main divisions, Rind, Lashari, Hot, Korai (all of undoubted Baloch descent) and Jatoi which tradition would appear to represent as descended from a Baloch woman (Jato) and her cousin (Murad). Outside these groups are those formed or affiliated in Mekran, such as the Buledhis, Ghazanis and Umaranis. Then comes the Doadi tribe, frankly of non-Baloch descent in the male line. Lastly to all these must be added the servile tribes, Gopangs, Dashtis, Gholas and others. In a fragment of an old ballad is a list of servile tribes, said to have been gifted by Mir Chakur to Bānari, his sister, as her dower and set free by her :

' The Kirds, Gabols, Gadahis, Talburs and the Marris of Kahan — all were Chakur's slaves.'

Other versions add the Pachalo (now unknown) and 'the rotten-boned Bozdars.' Other miscellaneous stocks have been fused with the Baloch — such as Pathans, Khetrans, Jatts.

Not one single tribe of all those specified above now forms a tuman or even gives its name to a tuman. We still find the five main divisions existing and numerous, but not one forms an organised tuman. All five are more or less scattered or at least broken up among the various tumans. The very name of bolak is forgotten — except by a clan of the Rind Baloch near Sibi which is still styled the Ghulam (slave) bolac. Among the Marris the clans are now called takar (cf. Sindhi takara, mountain), the septs phalli, and the smaller sub-divisions phara. The tuman (fr. Turkish tūmān, 10,000) reminds us of the Mughal hazara, or region, and is a semi-political, semi-military confederacy.

Tribal nomenclature among the Baloch offers some points of interest. As already mentioned the old main divisions each bore a significant name. The more modern tribes have also names which occasionally look like descriptive nick-names or titles. Thus Lund (Pers.) mean

Baloch Custom

knave, debauchee or wanderer, just as Rind does : Khosa (Sindhi) means robber (and also 'fever'): Marri in Sindhi also chances to mean a plague or epidemic. Some of the clan-names also have a doubtfull totemistic meaning : e.g., Syah-phadh, Black-feet : (gul-phadh, flower-feet (a Drishak clan) : (ganda-gwalagh, small red ant, (a Durkani clan) Kalphur, an aromatic plant, Glinus lotoides (a Bughti clan).

Baloch Customary Law in Dera Ghazi Khan.*

Custom, not the Muhammadan Law prevails among the Baloch as a body but the Nutkanis profess to follow the latter and to a large extent do in fact give effect to its provisions. Baloch often postpone a girl's betrothal till she is 16 years of age, and have a distinctive observance called the hiski, which consists in Casting a red cloth over the girl's head, either at her own house or at some place agreed upon by the kinsmen. Well-to-do people slaughter a sheep or goat for a feast; the poorer Balocti simply distribute sweets to their guests. Betrothal is considered almost as binding as marriage, especially in Rajanpur tahsil, and only impotence, leprosy or apostasy will justify its breach. Baloch women are not given to any one outside the race, save to Shyyids, but a man may marry any Muhammadan woman, Baloch, Jat or even Pathan, but not of course Savyid. The usual practice is to marry within the sept, women being sold out of it if they go astray. Only some sections of the Nutkanis admit an adult woman's right to arrange her own marriage ; but such a marriage, if effected without her guardian's consent, is considered 'black' by all other Baloch. Public feeling demands strong grounds for divorce, and in the Jampur tahsil it is not customary, while unchastity is the only recognised ground in Rajanpur. Marriage is nearly always according to the orthodox Muhammadan ritual, but a form called tan-bakhshi (' giving of the person ') is also recognised. It consists in the woman's mere declaration that she has given herself to her husband, and is virtually only used in the case of widows. The rule of succession is equal division among the sons, except in the families of the Mazari and Drishak chiefs in which tho eldest son gets a some- what larger share than his brothers. Usually a grandson got no share in the presence of a father's brother, but the custom now universally recognised is that grandsons get their deceased fathers' share,†† but even now in Sangarh the right of representation is not fully recognised, for among the Baloch of that tahsil grandsons take per capita, if there are no sons. As a rule a widow gets a life interest in her husband's estate, but the Gurchanis in Jampur refuse to allow a woman to inherit under any circumstances. Daughters rarely succeed in the presence of male descendants of the deceased's grandfather equally remote, the Baloch of Rajanpur and Jampur excluding the daughter by her father's cousin and nearer agnates ; but in Sangarh tahsil daughters get a share according to Muhammadan Law, provided they

* From Mr. A. H Diack's Customary Law of ihe Dera Qhdzi Khan District, Vol. xvi of the Punjab Customary Law Series.
The hiski is falling into disuse in the northernmost tahsil of Dera Ghazi Khan and among the Gopang along the Indus in Jampur.
†† A few Nutkani sections in Sangarh still say that they only do so if it is formally bequeathed to them by will.

Baloch customs

do not make an unlawful marriaore.* Where the daughter inherits her right is not extinguished by her marriage, but the Baloch in Rajanpur tahsil insist, that if married she shall have married within her father's phalli, or if unmarried shall marry within it, as a condition of her succession. The resilient son-in-law acquires no special rights, but the daughter's son in Jampur and Rajanpur succeeds where his mother would succeed. No other Baloch appear to recognise his right. When brother succeeds brother the whole blood excludes the half in Sangarh and Dera Ghazi Khan tahsils, but in Jampur and Rajanpur all the brothers succeed equally. Similarly, in Sangarh, the associated brothers take half and the others the remaining half. Sisters never succeed (except in those few sections of the Nutkani]]s of Sangarh which follow Muhammadan law). A step-son has no rights of succession, but may keep what his step-father gives him during his life-time, and, in Sangarh and Rajanpur, may get one-third of a natural son's share by will. Adoption is not recognised, except possibly among the Baloch of Sangarh, and those of Rajanpur expressly forbid it. But adoption in the strict Hindu sense is quite unknown, since a boy can be adopted even if the adoptor has a son of his own, and any one can adopt or be adopted. In Sangarh, again, a widow may adopt, but only with the consent of her husband's kinsmen. The adopted son retains all his rights in his natural father's property, but in Sangarh he does not succeed his adoptive father if the latter have a son born to him after the adoption (a rule curiously inconsistent with that which allows a man to adopt a second son). Except in Jampur tahsil, a man may make a gift of the whole of his land to an heir to the exclusion of the rest, and as a rule he may also gift to his daughter, her husband or son and to his sister and her children, but the Lunds and Legharis would limit the gift to a small part of the land. Gifts to a non-relative are as a rule invalid, unless it be for religion, and even then in Jampur it should only be of part of the estate. Death-bed gifts are invalid in Sangarh and Jampur and only valid in the other two tahsils of Dera Ghazi Khan to the extent allowed by Muhammadan Law. Sons cannot enforce a partition, but in Sangarh their consent is necessary to it ; yet in that and the Dera Ghazi Khan tahsils it is averred that a father can make an unequal partition (and even exclude a son from his share) to endure beyond his life-time. But in Jampur and Rajanpur the sons are entitled to equal shares, the Mazari and Drishak chiefs excepted. The subsequent birth of a son necessitates a fresh partition. Thus among the Baloch tribes we find no system of tribal law, but a mass of varying local usuage. Primitive custom is ordinarily enforced, and though the semi-sacred Nutkanis in Sangarh tahsil consider it incumbent upon them to follow Muhammadan Law, even they to do not give practical effect to all its niceties.

Birth customs. The usual Muhammadan observances at birth are in vogue. The hang is sounded into the child's ear by the mullah six days after its birth and on the 6th night a sheep or cattle are slaughtered and the brotherhood invited to a feast and dance. The child

* But the Khosas and Kasranis in this tahsil do not allow daughters to succeed at all, unless their father bequeath them a share, and that share must not exceed the share admissible under Muhammadan Law.
Baloch kinship

is also named on this occasion. If a boy it is given its grandfather's name, if he be dead ; or its father's name if he is dead: so too an uncle's name is given if both fther his grandfather be alive, (common name's are Dadu, Bangul, Kambir, Thaga (fr. thagagh, to be long lived), Drihan.

Circumcision (shade, tahor) is performed at the age of 1 or 2, by a tahorokh. or circumcisor who is a Domb, not a mullah or a Pirhain, except in the plains where a Pirhain is employed. In the hills a Baloch can act if no Domb be available. Ten or twelve men bring a ram and slaughter it for a feast, to which the boy's father (who is called the tahor wzha*) contributes bread, in the evening : next morning he entertains the visitors and they depart. In the plains cattle are slaughtered and the brotherhood invited; nendr being also given — a usage not in vogue in the hills.

Jhand, the first tonsure, is performed, prior to the circumcision, at the shrine of Sakhi Sarwar, the weight of the child's hair in silver being given to its mujawars.

Divorce (called sawan as well as tilāk) is effected in the hills by casting stones 7 times or thrice and dismissing the wife.

Concubinage is not unusual, and concubines are called suret, but winzas are not known, it is said. The children by such women are called suretwal and receive no share in their father's land, but only maintenance during his life-time. These surets appear, however, to hold a better position than the molid or slave women.

Terms of kinship. The kin generally are called shād or brathari (brotherhood), brahmdagh.

Pith-phiru, fore-fathers.

Table ?

The mother's brother is māma as in Punjabi, but her sister is tri and her son tri-zākht.

In addressing relatives other words are used, such as abba, father; adda (fem.-i), brother (familiarly). A wife is uually zāl, also āmrish.

A step-son is patrāk, pazādagh or phizādngh (fr. phadha, behind, thus corresponding to the Punjabi pichhalag). A step daughter is nafuskh.

* Wazha = Khwaja or master. The father is 'lord of the tahor or purification,'
It will be observed that nashār = son's or brother's wife
†† Dakhun or dahun also appears to mean brother's wife.
§ tri thus equals mother's sister or father's brothers wife.
Barāthar is a poetical form.
Dames' Monograph, p. 25,
Baloch mythology

A namesake is amnam and a contemporary amsan. Equally simple are the Baloch marriage customs. The youth gives shawls to his betrothed's mother and her sisters, and supplies the girl herself with clothes till the wedding. Before that occurs minstrels (doms) are sent out to summon the guests, and when assembled they make gifts of money or clothes to the bridegroom. Characteristically the latter's hospitality takes the form of prizes— a camel for the best horse, money to the best shot and a turban to the best runner. The actual wedding takes place in the evening, Nendr* or wedding gifts, the neota or tambol of the Punjab, are only made in the plains, but among the hill Baloch a poor man goes the round of his section and begs gifts, chiefly made in cash. Similarly the tribal chiefs and headmen used to levy benevolences, a cow from every herd, a sheep from every flock, or a rupee from a man who owned no cattle, when celebrating a wedding. It is also customary to knock the heads of the pair together twice and a relation of them ties together the corners of their chadars (shawls).

A corpse is buried at once, with no formalities, save that a mullah, if present, reads the janaza. Dry brushwood is heaped over the grave.

Three or four days later the āsrokh or sehā takes place. This appears to be a contribution also called pathar or mhanna, each neighbour and clansman of the deceased's section visiting his relations to condole with them and making them a present of four annas each. In the evening the relations provide them with food and they depart.

On a chief's death the whole clan assembles to present gifts which vary in amount from four annas to two rupees. Six months after- wards the people all re-assemble at the grave, the brushwood is removed and the grave marked out with white stones.

Of the pre-Islamic faith of the Baloch hardly a trace remains. Possibly in Nodh-bandagh (lit. the cloud-binder), surnamed the Gold-scatterer, who had vowed never to reject a request and never to touch money with his hands, an echo of some old mythology survives, but in Baloch legend he is the father of Gwaharam, Chakur's rival for the hand of Gohar. Yet Chakur the Rind when defeated by the Lasharis is saved by their own chief Nodh-bandagh, and mounted on his mare Phul (' Flower').

The Baloch is as simple in his religion as in all else and fanaticism is foreign to his nature. Among the hill Baloch mullahs are rarely found and the Muhammadan fasts and prayers used to be hardly known. Orthodox observances are now more usual and the Quran is held in great respect. Faqirs also are seldom met with and Sayyids are

* Also called mhanna, lit. 'contributions.'
See Doie, Bilochi noma, pp 64-65. But Dames (The Baloch Race, p. 37) translates asrokh by memorial canopy, apparently with good reason. Capt. Coldstream says : 'Asrokh is a ceremony which takes place on a certain day after a death The friends of the deceased assemble at his house and his heirs entertain them and prayers are repeated. The ceremony of dastarbandi or tying a pagri on the head of the deceased's heir is then performed by his leading relative in presence of the guests. The date varies among the different tumans. In Dera Ghazi Khan it is generally the 3rd day after the death : in Balochistan there is apparently no fixed day, but as a rule the period is longer,'
Baloch legends

unknown.* The Baloch of the plains are however much more religious outwardly, and among them Sayyids possess considerable influence over their murids.

The Bugtis especially affect Pir Sohri ('the red saint') a Pirozani of the Nodhani section. This pir was a goat-herd who gave his only goat to the Four Friends of God and in return they miraculously filled his fold with goats and gave him a staff wherewith if smitten the earth would bring forth water. Most of the goats thus given were red (i.e., brown), but some were white with red ears. Sohri was slain by some Buledhis who drove off his goats, but he came to life again and pursued them. Even though they cutoff his head he demanded his goats which they restored to him. Sohri returned home headless and before he died bade his sons tie his body on a camel and make his tomb wherever it rested. At four different places where there were kahir trees it halted, and these trees are still there. Then it rested at the spot where Sohri's tomb now is, and close by they buried his daughter who had died that very day, but it moved itself in another direction. Most Baloches offer a red goat at Sohri's tomb and it is slaughtered by the attendants of the shrine, the flesh being distributed to all who are present there.

Another curious legend is that of the prophet Dris (fr. Arab. Idris) who by a faqir's sarcastic blessing obtained 40 sons at a birth. Of these he exposed 39 in the wilderness and the legend describes how they survived him, and so terrified the people that public opinion compelled Dris to bring them back to his home. But the Angel of Death bore them all away at one time. Dris, with his wife then migrates to a strange land but is false'y accused of slaying the king's son. Mutilated and cast forth to die he is tended by a potter whose slave he becomes. The king's daughter sees him, blind and without feet or hands, yet she falls in love with him and insists on marrying him. Dris is then healed by Health, Fortune and Wisdom and returning home finds his 40 sons still alive! At last like Enoch he attains to the presence of God without dying.††

It must not however be imagined that the Baloch is superstitious. His nervous, imaginative temperament makes him singularly credulous as to the presence of sprites and hobgoblins in desert place, but he is on the whole singularly free from irrational beliefs. His Muhammadanism is not at all bigoted and is strongly tinged with Shiaism its mysticism appealing vividly to his imagination. "All the poets give vivid descriptions 6l the Day of Judgment, the terrors of Hell and the joys of Paradise, mentioning the classes of men who will receive rewards or punishments. The greatest virtue is generosity, the crime demanding most severe punishment is avarice," a law in entire accord with the Baloch code. One of the most characteristic of Baloch legends is the Prophet's Maraj or Ascension, a qnaintlv beautiful narrative in anthropomorphic form § some of the legends current

* There are a considerable number of Sayyids among the Bozdars.
More correctly Nodhakani, descendants of Nodhak, a diminutive of nodh. 'cloud ' a common proper name among the Baloch. The word is corrupted to Nutkani by outsiders.
†† For the full version see The Baloch Race, pp. 169— 175 where the legend of the Chihil. Tan ziarat is also given. That shrine is held in special reverence by the Brahuis
§ It is given in Dames' Popular Poetry of the Baloches, pp. 157 — 161.
The Magassi Baloch

concerning Ali would appear to be Buddhist in origin, e.g., that of The Pigeon and the Hawk.*

Music is popular among the Baloch, but singing to the dambiro, a four-stringed guitar, and the sarinda, a five-stringed instrument like a banjo, is confined to the Dombs. The Baloch himself uses the nar, a wooden pipe about 30 inches in length, bound round with strips of raw gut. Upon this is played the hung, a kind of droning accompaniment to the singing, the singer himself playing it with one corner of his mouth. The effect is quaint but hardly pleasing, though Dames says that the nar accompaniments are graceful and melodious.

The Magassi Baloch.

The Magassi Baloch who are found in Multan, Muzaffargarh, Dera Ghazi Khan, Mianwali and Jhang, appear to be a "peculiar people" rather than a tribe.†† As both Sunnis and Shias are found among them they do not form a sect. Most of them in the above Districts are murids or disciples of Mian Nur Ahmad, Abbassi, of Rajanpur in Dera Ghazi Khan, whose grandfather Muhammad girl's shrine is in Mianwali. The Magassis in Balochistan are, however, all disciples of Hazrat Ghaus Bahd-ud-Din of Multan. Like all the murids of the Mian, his Magassi disciples abstain from smoking and from shaving the beard. Magassis will espouse any Muhammadan girl, but never give daughters in marriage outside the group, and strictly abstain from any connection with a sweeper woman, even though she be a convert to Islam. At a wedding all the Magassi who are murids of the Mian assemble at the bride's home a day before the procession and are feasted by her parents. The guests offer prayers § to God and the Mian for the welfare of the married pair. This feast is called shādmāna and

* ibid. p. 161.
The Baloch of Jhang merit some notice. They are divided into following septs:-
The Madari-Gadi Rinds will not give brides to the Laghari, Chandia, Kerni and Gadhi Rind septs, from whom they receive them, but all these Baloch will take wives from other Muhammadans except the Sayyids. The Mangesi only smoke with men of their own sept.
In Balochistan the Magassi are said to form a tuman under Nawab Qaisar Khan, Magassi, of Jhal Magassi. They say that in the time of Ghazi Khan many of them migrated into the present Sangarh tahsil of Dera Ghazi Khan, but were defeated by Lal Khan, tumandar of the Qasranis and driven across the Indus, where they settled in Nawankot, now in Leiah tahsil. Their settlement is now a ruin, as they were dispersed in the time of the Sikhs, but a headman of Nawankot is still regarded as their sirdar or chief
§ In Multan these prayers are called āzi and are said to be offered when the feast is half eaten.
In Leiah a shādmāna is said to be observed on occasions of great joy or sorrow All the members and followers of the " Sarai ' or Abbassi family assemble and first eat meat cooked with salt only and bread containing sugar, the leavings being distributed among the poor after prayers have been recited. Every care is taken to prevent a crow or a dog from touching this food, and those who prepare it often keep the mouth covered up. A shādmāna is performed at the shrines of ancestors. It is a solemn rite and prayers are said in common. A boy is not accepted as a disciple by the Pir until he is circumcised, and until he is so accepted he cannot take part in a shādmāna.
The Baloch criminal tribe

precedes all tte other rites and ceremonies. Contrary to Muhammadan usage a Magassi bridegroom may consummate his marriage on the very first night of the wedding procession and in the house of the bride's father. At a funeral, whether of a male or female, the relatives repeat the four takbirs, if they are Sunnis, but disciples of the Mian recite the janaza of the Shias. Magassis, when they meet one another, or any other murid of the Mian Sahib, shake and kiss each other's hands in token of their hearty love and union.

The Magassi in Leiah are Shias and like all Shias avoid eating the hare. But the following customs appear to be peculiar to the Magassi of this tahsil : When a child is born the water in a cup in stirred with a knife, which is also touched with a bow smeared with horse-dung and given to the child to drink. The sixth night after a male birth is kept as a vigil by both men and women, the latter keeping apart and singing sihra songs, while among the men a mirasi beats his drum. This is called the chhati. On the 14th day the whole brotherhood is invited to assembble, women and all, and the boy is presented to them. The doyen of the kinsman is then asked to swing the child in his cradle, and for this he is given a rupee or a turban. From 14 paos to as many sers of gur and salt are then distributed among the kinsmen, and the boy is taken to the nearest well, the man who works it being given a dole of sugar and bread or flour. This is the rite usually called ghari gharoli, and it ought to be observed on the 14th day, but poor people keep it on the day after the chhati. The tradition is that the chhatti and ghari gharoli observances are kept, because Amir Hamza was borne by the fairies from Arabia to the Caucasus when he was six days old, and so every Baloch boy is carefully guarded on the sixth night after his birth. Amir Hamza was, indeed, brought back on the 14th day, and so on that day the observances are kept after a boy's birth. For this reason too, it is said, the bow is strung ! All wedding rites take place at night, and on the wedding night a couch and bedding supplied by the bridegroom are taken to the bride's house by mirasis, who sing songs on the way, and get a rupee as their fee. The members of the bridegroom's family accompany them. This is called the sejband.

At a funeral five takbirs are recited if the mullah happens to be a Shia, but if he is a Sunni only four are read. The nimaz in use are those of the Shias.

The Baloch as a criminal tribe

The Baloch of Karnal and Ambala form a criminal community. They say they were driven from their native land in the time of Nadir Shah who adopted severe measures to check their criminal tendencies, but they also say that they were once settled in the Qasur tract near Lahore and were thence expelled owing to their marauding habits. They give a long genealogy of their descent from Abraham and derive it more immediately from Rind, whose descendants, they say, are followers of the Imam Shafi and eat unclean things like the Awans, Qalandars, Madaris and the vagrant Baloch who are known as


Haburas. Gullu they insert in their genealogy as the ancestor of the Giloi Baloch. Speaking an argot of their own called Baluchi Farsi, they are skillful burglars and wander great distances, disguised as faqirs and butchers. When about to start on a plundering expedition sardars or chiefs are appointed as lenders, and on its termination they divide the spoil, receiving a double portion for themselves. Widows also receive their due share of the booty. The Giloi Baloch of Lyallpur, however, claim descent from Sayyid "Giloi," a nickname paid to mean " freebooter." This tribe was formerly settled in the Montgomery District, but has been transplanted to two villages in Lyallpur and is settling down to cultivation, though it still associates with criminals in Ferozepur, Montgomery and Bahawalpur. It now makes little use of its peculiar patois.


  • Bamba (बंब), an important tribe in Kashmir, and represented by two families in Hazara: District Gazetteer, 1907, p. 34.
  • Bam-Margi (बाम-मार्गी), Vamachari, the 'left-handed' worshippers of Kali and the most notorious division of the Shaktiks. Said to have been founded by the Jogi Kanipa, chiefly recruited from Saniasis and Jogis, and to be found chiefly in Kangra and Kashmir. As a rule their rites are kept secret and they are perhaps in consequence reputed to be chiefly indulgence in meat, spirits and promiscuity. The Choli-marg and Birajpani are more disreputable groups or sub-sects of the Bam-margi.
  • Bamozai (बमोजई), an Afghan family, settled in Multan, which came from Khorasan in the time of Ahmad Shah Abdali : Multan Gazetteer, 1901-02, pp. 161—2.
  • Ba-nawa (बा-नवा), ? a synonym for be-nawa, g.v.
  • Bangali (बंगाली), (1) a native of Bengal : (2) a vagrant tribe, probably akin to the Sansis (with whom they certainly intermarry) and found chiefly in Kangra, whither they were probably driven from Hoshiarpur by the passing of the Criminal Tribes Act.

* This title suggests a Gurkha origin, as Thappa is a common title among the Gurkhas.
The Bangash

The Bangalis are a small group, but are in constant communication with the Sapehras and other criminal tribes of the plains. They live by begging, exhibiting snakes, hunting and pilfering, but are probably not addicted to serious crime. Their camps are said to contain never less than 7 or more than 15 male adults. They make reed huts and can strike camp on the shortest notice, travelling with donkeys as pack-animals. Dogs are kept for hunting, and the Bangali will eat any wild animal, even a hyena, but he eschews beef or pork according to the prejudices of the people among whom he finds himself. There is said to be a special Bangali argot, known only to the tribe. Their women are prostitutes, as well as dancers and singers. Besides propitiating local deities the Bangalis are said to specially affect Sakhi Sarwar as Lakhdata and occasionally visit bis shrine at Dharmkot near Nasirabad. (3) The term Bangali is applied to Kanjar in some districts and in others to any spada or snake-charmer in the plains.* There is no evidence that (2) or (3) have any connection with Bengal. In Panjabi Bangali means a braggart, as in bhukhkha Bangali, a boastful person.

  • Bangash, Bangakh. This is the name given to a number of Pathan tribes, formerly estimated to amount to some 100,000 families, as well as to the tract of mountainous country which they held. This tract was once divided into Bāla (Upper) and Pāin (Lower)Bangash and was thence called the Bangashat (in the plural) or 'the two Bangash.' The first historical mention of the Bangashat occurs in Babar's Tuzuk, but the two tracts had long been under the control of the Turk and Mughal rulers of the Ghazniwi empire as the most practicable routes from Ghazni and Kabul into India lay through them. At a period when the Khataks and Orakzais are barely referred to, we find constant mention of the Afghans of Bangash. Roughly speaking, Upper Bangash included Kurram and Lower Bangash the country round Kohat, but it is difficult to define accurately the shifting boundaries of the tuman as it was called by the Mughals. According to the Ain-i-Akbari this tuman formed part of the sarkar and subah (province) of Kabul.
The Afghan tribes of Bangash were of Kurani (Kaṛlārni) origin and the following table gives their traditional descent : —
Kakai (second son)
Sulaiman. + Sharaf-ud-Din (called Shitak by the Afghans.)
Sulaiman → Wazir. + Bai. + Malik Kakhai Mir.
Sharaf-ud-Din → The Bannuchis.
The Baizai, descendants of Bai, and the Malik-Miris or Miranzais, sprung from Malik Mir, were the parent tribes of the Afghans of Bangash, and to these were affiliated the Kaghzi, descended from Kakhai or Kalghai, daughter of Malik Mir, by husband of an unknown tribe. The Malik-Miris, as Malik Mir's descendants in the male line, held the chieftainship, but it subsequently passed to the Baizais. The latter

* Because of the belief that charming is most successfully practiced at Dacca in Bengal. There is or was a wild tribe in the rocks above Solon called Vangalis. Sapehra and Sapada are doubtful forms of Sapela, snake-charmer.
The Eastern (or rather Northern) Afghan form.

Bangash history

has several brandies, the Mardo, Azu, Lodi and Shakhu khels. The Miranzai khels are the Hassanzai, with the Badah, Khakha, and Umar khels. A third branch the Shamilzai,* apparently identical with the Kaghzi, produced the Landi, Hassan Khel, Musa Khel and Isa Khel.

Like the other Karlarni tribes the Afghans of Bangash were disciples of the Pir-i-Roshan, and their attachment to that heresy brought about their ruin, the Mughal government organizing conaiant expeditions against them. After the Khataks had moved towards the north-east from the Shuwal range (in Waziristan), the Baizai, Malik-Miris and Kaghzis then settled in the Upper Bangash, invaded the Lower (Kohat) and, in alliance with the Khataks, drove the Orakzai who then held the Lower Bangash westwards into Tirah. This movement continued till the reign of Akbar.††

The history of the Bangash tribes and the part they took in the Mughal operations against the Roshanias are obscure. Probably they were divided among themselves. § but those of them who had remained in Kurram appear to have adhered to the Roshania doctrines.

After Aurangzeb's accession in 1659, we find Sher Muhammad Khan, of Kohat, chief of the Malik-Miris, in revolt against the Mughals. He was captured, but subsequently released and became an adherent of the Mughals. Khushhal Khan the Khatak gives a spirited account of his little wars with Sher Muhammad Khan which ended in his own defeat and the final establishment of the Bangash in their present seats.

Among the Bangash Pathans of Kohat, betrothal (kwazda, 'asking') is privately negotiated, the boy's father taking the initiative. Then a day is fixed upon for the father and his friends to visit the girl's father. At the latter's house prayers are read and sweets distributed, the nikah being sometimes also read on this occasion. But as a rule the girl simply puts on a gold or silver coin as the sign that she is betrothed. If the wedding is to be celebrated at no distant date, the rarmana or bride-price is paid at the betrothal — otherwise it is not paid till the wedding. But a price is invariably expected, its amount varying from Rs. 100 to 1,000, and the boy's father also has to supply the funds for entertaining the wedding party on the wedding day. The day following the betrothal pitchers of milk are exchanged by the two parties and the milk is drunk by their kinsfolk. The boy's father also sends the girl a suit of clothes and some cooked food on each Id and the Shabrat.

On the day fixed for the commencement of the festivities sweets are distributed by the boy's father among his friends and kinsmen and music is played. Three days before the wedding comes the kenawal, when the boy's kinswomen visit the bride and observe this rite, which consists in stripping the bride of all her ornaments and shutting her up in a room by herself. The next night the women visit her again for the kamsi khlaswal or unplaiting of her hair. For this the barber's wife receives a fee. On the third day the bridegroom gives a feast to all his friends

* Also interesting us having given birth to the Bangash Nawabs of Farrukhabad.
The Miranzai give their name to the Miraczai tappa, Upper and Lower, which forms the Hangu tahsil of Kohat.
†† The Ain still includes the Orakzai in the Bangash tuman, but its vaguely defined boundaries may have been at that time deemed to include Tirak.
§ Some hundreds of them were deported into Hindustan.

Banhor — Bania

and fellow-villagers, and in the afternoon he and his friends don garlands. Tho neundra is also presented on this day. Then the boy and his wedding party go to the bride's house, returning that same night if it is not too far away, or else remaining there for the night. On the fourth day in the morning churi is given to tho wedding party and coloured wafer sprinkled on them, some money being placed on the dish used for the churi as the perquisite of the bridle's barber. After a meal the girls of the party, accompanied by the bridegroom's best man (saubhalna) , go to a spring or- well to fetch water in which the bride bathes. This is called ghari gharol, as it often is in tho Punjab. Then the pair are dressed in new clothes and the nikah is solemnized. Some parents give their daughter a dowry of clothes and ornaments, called plarganai mal or 'paternal wealth.' On the next day but one after the wedding churi* is brought from the bride's house to the bride-groom's — an observance called tirah. On the seventh day, uwamma wraj, the bride is fetched to her house by her kinswoman, but three or four days later she returns to her husband, sometimes with more presents of clothes and ornaments from her parents.

The Bangash of Kohat are tall and good looking, they shave the head and clip the beard like the people of Peshawar. Though neat in dress which is generally white, they have not much courage. The Shiah Bangash are much braver. In Upper Miranzai the Bangash still affect the dark blue turban and shirt, with a grey sheet for a lungi, which were once common to the whole tribe — as Elphinstone noted. They shave the head and eradicate most of the hair on the chin and cheeks, leaving little but the ends of the moustache and a Newgate fringe. Young men often wear love locks and stick a rose in the turban— when they feel themselves irresistible. The mullas have not yet succeeded in preaching down the custom of clipping tho beard. The Miranzai women wear the ordinary blue shift with a loose trousers of susi and a shirt, but the shift is often studded with silver coins and ugly silk work. Few other ornaments are worn.

  • Bani (बानी), Bal, a female servant, a dai.


  • Bania (बानिया). — The word bania is derived from the Sanskrit bānijya or trader and the Bania by caste, as his name implies, lives for and by commerce. He holds a considerable area of land in the east of the Province ; but it is very rarely indeed that he follows any other than mercantile pursuits. The commercial enterprise and intelligence of the class is great, and the dealings of some of the great Bania houses of Delhi, Bikaner, and Marwar are of the most extensive nature. But the Bania of the village, who represents the great mass of the caste, is a poor creature, notwithstanding the title of Mahajan or " great folk," which is confined by usage to the caste to which he belongs.

* Wheat flour cooked with ghi and dry sugar.
Those of Samilzai dress in white with a coloured lungi and turban of a peculiar pattern woven locally. In Upper Mranzai a peculiar tunic is worn— it is not very long and about 13 inches below the collar is gathered into numerous pleats— which distinguishes them from parachas or Muhammadan shop-keepers.
The Bania organisation

He spends bis life in his shop, and the results are apparent in his inferior physique and utter want of manliness. He is looked down upon by the peasantry as a cowardly money-grubber ; but at the same time his social standing is from one point of view curiously higher than theirs, for he is what they are not, a strict Hindu; he is generally admitted to be of pure Vaisya descent, he wears the janeo or sacred thread, his periods of purification are longer than theirs, he does not practise widow-marriage, and he will not eat or drink at their hands ; and religious ceremonial and the degrees of caste proper are so interwoven with the social fabric that the resulting position of the Bania in the grades of rustic society is of a curiously mixed nature. The Bania is hardly used by the proverbial wisdom of the countryside :

"He who has a Bania for a friend is not in want of an enemy",
"First beat a Bania, then a thief."

And indeed the Bania has too strong a hold over the husbandman for there to be much love lost between them. Yet the money-lenders of the villages at least have been branded with a far worse name than they deserve. They perform functions of the most cardinal importance in the village economy, and it is surprising how much reasonableness and honesty there is in their dealings with the people so long as they can keep their business transactions out of a court of justice.

Organisation. — The organisation of the Banias is exceedingly obscure. They have certain territorial divisions, but there is also a true sub-caste, called Bāra-Saini*, in Gurgaon, which is said to be quite distinct from the others. They are descended from Chamars and at marriage the boy wears a mukat or tiara of dāk leaves, shaped like a basket, into which a piece of leather is fixed.

The territorial groups are at least three in number. Of these the > chief is the Aggarwals, and there is a curious legend about their origin.

Bāshak Nāg had 17 daughters, who were married to the 17 sons of Ugar Sain, but these snake daughters of Bashak used to leave their homes by night to visit their parents, and in their absence their husbands lived with their handmaidens, and descendants of these are the Dasa or Chhoti-sarn gots of the Banias, each got taking its name from that of the handmaiden from whom it is descended. The children of Bashak Nag's daughters formed the 17 gots of the Aggarwal. Once a boy and girl of the Goyal got were married by mistake and their

* From bārā, 12, and sent, an array (Crooke's Tribes and Castes of the North-Western Provinces and Oudh I, p. 177.)
Cf, Punjab Census Report, 1883, § 533. The Aggarwal gots include :-
1. Jindal.
2. Mindal.
3. Gar.
4. Eran.
5. Dheran.
6. Mital.
7. Mansal.
8. Mangal.
9. Tahil.
10. Kansal.
11. Bansal.
12. Mahwar.
l3. Goyal or Goil.
14. Gond
Of these Kansal and Bansal are named from Kans, a grass, and bans, bamboo, and they do not cut or injure these plants. The Mahwar are said to be descended from a son of Agar Sain who married a low-caste wife, so other Banias will not smoke with them, An other account adds Sengal.

The Bania organisation

descendants form the half-got called Gond,* so that there are 17-1/2 gots in all. And again one of the sons of Ugar Sain married a low-caste woman and his descendants are the Mahwar got which can not smoke with other Banias. The Aggarwal Mahajans only avoid their own section in marriage (Jind).

The second group is the Saralia, who are an off-shoot of the Aggarwal and appear to have the same gots.

The third group, the Oswal, appears to form a true sub-caste. They strenuously claim a Punwar Rajput origin, but other Rajputs of various tribes joined them. They followed one of their Brahmans in becoming Jains, in Sambat 422.

Hence there are three territorial groups or sub-castes, and a fourth of lower status based on descent: —

  • Sub-caste I. Aggarwal : Sub-groups:— (i) Bisa (ii) Dasa or Chhoti-sarn, Originated from Agroha. In Western Rajasthan
  • Sub-caste II. Saralia, from Sarala. In Western Rajasthan
  • Sub-caste III. Oswal, — from Osianagri — In Eastern Rajasthan.
  • Sub-caste IV. Bārra-Saini.

Apparently there are, besides these territorial groups, cross-divisions of the caste based on religious differences. These seem to be Saraogi or Jain, Maheshri or Shaiva, Aggarwal-Vishnoi or Vaishnavaa. But the Maheshri, who undoubtedly derive their name from Mahesh or Shiva, are not now all Shaivas, for one of their number was in consequence of a miracle converted to Jainism and so founded the Tahtar got of the Oswal, among whom the Kamawat got is also Maheshri. It would appear that the Shaiva groups formed true sub-castes, for the Maheshri certainly do not intermarry with the Aggarwal or Oswal§ though Vaishnava and Jain Aggarwals intermarry freely in Gurgaon.

* Or Gand, cf. the Gand or impure section of the Bhatias. Hissar Gazetter, 1892, p. 137. In Jhelum the Gond and Billa sections do not intermarry, being said to be descendants of a common ancestor.
The original Oswal gots are said to be : —
1. Thaker,
2. Baphna (Rajput, by origin),
3. Sankhli,
4. Kamawat Panwar (Maheshri),
5. Mor Rakh Pokarna, Sankla Punwar,
6. Kuladhar, Bribat; Punwars,
7. Sri Srim, Sankla,
8. Srishtgota, Punwar,
9. Suchanti, Punwar,
10. Bahadur, Punwar,
11. Kanbat,Punwar,
12. Baid,
13. Tagu Srishtri, Sankla,
14. Burugotra, Bhatti,
15. Didu,
16. Chorbheria. Raghubansi,
17. Kanojia, Rahtor,
18. Chuichat.
19. Kotari, or keepers of the treasure-house, but the last does not seem to be a true got, so that there were only 18 gots, as there still are among the Aggarwal.
The Baid are said to have been originally a branch of the Srishtgota and to have been so called because Devi effected a miraculous cure of tho eyes of a girl belonging to that section by causing a special kind of ak to grow, the juice of which healed them.
†† To which place the Aggarwals make annual pilgimages, as it is the ancient city of Agar or Ugar Sain. They also have a boy's hair cut there for tho first time.
§ An account from Jind divides the Baniaa (like the Bhabras) into the Srimal and Oswal groups, each with different gots:
Srimal gots: Chanalia. Bora. Kanodia. Bangaria. Juniwal. Tank.
Oswal gots: Ranke. Dugar. Gadia. Bambel. Bambh. Nahar.

The Banias in Bawal — Banjara

But from the extreme south-east of the Punjab comes the following account which differs widely from those given above. The Bawal nizamat borders on Rajasthan, and forms part of Nabha, in which State ho Banias are represented by four groups : —

(1) Aggarwal. (2) Rastogi, (3) Khandelwal, (4) Mahur, who rank in this order, each group being able to take water from the one above it, but not vice versa.

(i). The Aggarwal of Bawal nizamat in Nabha perform all the ceremonies observed by the Brahmans of that tract, but they have a special custom of boring the ears and noses of children, both male and female. This is called parojan. For this ceremony they keep some of the rice used at the lagan preceding a wedding in another family; and carry tho deotas, which are usually kept in the purohits charge to their own house. The deotas are worshipped for seven days. The pandit fixes a mahurat or auspicious time for the boring and the rite is then performed, a feast being given to Brahmans and relatives. In the case of a boy, he is made to sit on a he-goat which is borrowed for the occasion and alms are given, a present being also made to the boy. In Nabha town some Aggarwal families perform this ceremony, but others do not.

(ii). The Rustagi* group is found only in the Bawal nizamat, in Gurgaon, Delhi, Alwar, Budaon, Bulandshahr and Gwalior. They are most strongly represented in Bawal, at Bhora in Rewari tahsil and at Barand in Alwar State, but probably do not exceed 1,000 families in the whole of India. Though in marriage they only avoid one got, yet owing to the paucity of the numbers the poorer members cannot get wives and so die unmarried. They say that Rohtasgarh was their original home and that their name Rustagi is derived from Rohtas. They have 18 gots named after the villages which they originally inhabited. They avoid widow re-marriage, but do not invariably wear the janeo, as the Aggarwals do. They perform the first hair-cutting of a boy at Nagar-kot or Dahni in Alwar at the asthan of Devi. They observe the milni, i.e. when the parents of a betrothed couple meet the girl's father must give the boy's father from one to twenty-one rupees, and the girl's father must not visit the village where his daughter has been betrothed until after the marriage under the penalty of paying the milni, but once paid it is not payable a second time. At the Dewali Rustogis pay special reverence to their sati. They are all Vaishnavas and also worship Gopi Nath. The barat must arrive the day before the wedding, but they have no other special marriage customs.

(iii), The Khandelwals are few in number. They have 72 gots, the principal one in Nabha State being the Bajolia. They claim to have come from Khatu Khandela in Jaipur. The barat in this group also arrives the day before the wedding but the boy's father has to feed the bard himself on that day. Like the Ahirs the Khandelwals on the widai day have a special custom. The women of the bride's family cloths the boy's father in yellow clothes and put a pitcher of water on his head, with a necklace of camel's dung round his neck and compel him to go and worship the well just as the women do. He only escapes after much teasing by paying them from 11 to 51 rupees. They do not wear the janeo, and as they are devotees of Bhagwan Das, Mahatma, of Tikha in the Bawal Thana they do not smoke or sell tobacco.

(iv). The Mahur are few in number in Bawal. They have two gots Mawal and Kargas. They are Vaishnavas and specially reverence Hanuman.


  • Banjara. — This and the Labana caste are generally said to be identical being called Banjara in the eastern districts and Labana in the Punjab proper. But Banjara, derived from banij, 'a trader', or perhaps from bānji 'a pedlar's pack,' is used in the west of tho Punjab as a generic term for 'pedlar.' Wanjāra (q. v.) is doubtless only another form of the name.
The Banjāras of the eastern districts are a well-marked class, of whom a complete description will be found in Elliott's Races of the N.-W. P., I, pp. 52—56. They were the great travelling traders and carriers of Central India, the Deccan and Rajasthan; and under the

* According to an account from Pataudi State the groups are Aggarwal, Rasangi, Mahesri, Saraogi and Kalal, and in Gurgaon it is said that the Saraogi and Vishnav (sic) Banias do not intermarry though they can eat kachchi and pakki with each other.
In Southern India the Brinjara is also called Lawanah or Lumbana (fr. lūn, Sanskr lavan, ' salt'). See also under Multani.

Banjara - Bannuchi

Afghan and Mughal empires were the commissariat of the imperial forces. A simile applied to a dying person is :

Banjāra ban men phire liye lakṛia hath;
Ṭāndā wāhā lad gaya, koi sangi nahin sāth.
Meaning - "The Banjara goes into the jungle with his stick in his hand. He is ready for the journey, and there is nobody with him."

From Sir H. Elliott's description they seem to be a very composite class, including sections of various origin. But the original Banjara caste is said to have its habitat in the sub-montane tract from Gorakhpur to Hardwar. The Banjāras of the United Provinces come annually into the Jumna districts and Eastern States in the cold weather with letters of credit on the local merchants, and buy up large numbers of cattle which they take back again for sale as the summer approaches; and these men and the Banjara carriers from Rajasthan are principally Hindus. The Musalman Banjāras are probably almost all pedlars. The headmen of the Banjara parties are called naik (Sanskrit nayaka, "chief") and Banjaras in general are not uncommonly known by that name. The Railways are fast destroying the carrying trade of these people except in the mountain tracts. The word banjāra is apparently sometimes used for an oculist, and any Hindu pedlar is so styled. Synonyms are bisati or maniār in the central, and lanati in the eastern districts, and, amongst Muhammadans, khoja aud parācha. In Amritsar their gots are said to include Manhas, Khokhar and Bhatti septs, and they have a tradition that Akbar dismissed Chaudhri Shah Quli from his service whereupon he turned trader or banjara.

  • Bannuchi (बन्नूची). — The hybrid branch of the Pathans which holds the central portion of the Bannu tahsil, between the Kurram and Tochi rivers. This tract they occupied towards the close of the 14th century, after being driven out of Shawal by the Wazirs and in turn drivin the Mangal and Hanni tribes back into Kohat and Kurram. The Bannuchis have attracted to themselves Sayyids and other doctors of Islam in great numbers, and have not hesitated to intermarry with these, with the scattered representatives of the former inhabitants of their tract who remained with them as hamsaya, and with the families of the various adventurers who have at different times settled amongst them; insomuch that "Bannuchi in its broadest sense now means all Muhammadans, and by a stretch, even Hindus long domiciled within the limits of the irrigated tract originally occupied by the tribe." The descendants of Shitak, however, still preserve the memory of their separate origin and distinguish themselves as Bannuchi proper. They are of inferior physique, envious, secretive, cowardly, lying, great bigots, inoffensive, and capital cultivators. Sir Herbert Edwardes says of them : 'The Bannuchis are bad specimens of Afghans ; can worse be said of any race ? They have all the vices of Pathans rankly luxuriant, their virtues stunted.' Their Isakhi clan, however, is famed for the beauty of its women. ' Who marries not an Isakhi woman deserves an ass for a bride.'
Shitak, a Kakai Kaṛlanri, by his wife Bannu had two sons, Kiwi and Surani. The former had also two sons, Miri and Sami. To Miri's sons fell the south, to Sami's the centre, and to Surani's the north and
Banot — Barar
west of Dand, the modern Bannu, which was named after Shitak's wife. When Bannu became a part of the kingdom of Kabul the Bannuchis split into two factions, 'black' and 'white', which left them a prey to the Wazirs.
  • Banot (बनोत), a sept of Hindu Rajputs, which holds a bārah or group of 12 villages near Garhshankar in Hoshidrpur. The Banot say they are of the same origin as the Narus, and the name is said to mean 'shadow of the ban' or forests of the Siwaliks in which they once dwelt.
  • Bansi (बांसी), a class of musicians, players on the pipe (bans) at temples and village shrines, but virtually employed in the same way as Halis or Sipis, in Chamba.
  • Banya-i (बान्या-ई), a Gujar clan (agricultural) found in Amritsar.
  • Bappi (बप्पी), a Jat clan (agricultural) found in Multan : see Bosan.
  • Barai (बराई), a Jat clan (agricultural) found in Amritsar.
  • Baraiya (बरैया), (Sanskrit, varāajivi), an astrologer according to the Dharma Puran, begotten by a Brahman on a Sudra. But under the same name the Tantra describes a caste sprung from a gopā (cowherd) and a Tantravāya (weaver) and employed in cultivating betel (Colebrooke, Essays, 272-3).
  • Barakzai (बारकजई), a famous clan of the Abdali or Darrani Afghans which sapplanted the Sadozai family of that branch early in the 19th century. Its most famous members were Fath Khan and Dost Muhammad Khan his brother. The latter took the title of amir after Shah Shuja's failure to recover Qandahar in 1834 and founded the present ruling house of Afghanistan: (for its history see M. Longworth Dames in The Encyclopedia of Islam, 1908).
  • Barar (बरड़), fern. Barri, a low caste given to begging and roguery. In Jullundur the Barars make winnowing fans (chhaj), baskets, and sieves (chhanra) of reed. They also hunt with dogs. Their observances resemble those of the Chuhras. At a wedding one of the caste is selected to officiate, and he kindles the fire and makes the couple go round it. The bride's parents keep the wedding party one or three days, feeding its members on rice sugar and bread. On its departure the girl's father gives her
a (marriage portion) dower. The women sing songs, and the men chant a ballad called guga. The Barars believe in Lal Beg and every Rabi they offer him a rot of 2-1/2 sers with a fowl, boiled and smothered in ghi. This is either given to faqirs or eaten by them-selves. (Some of the caste are vagrants and form a liuk between the Sansis and Chuhras.
  • Barara (बड़ाड़ा), also called Barar (बड़ाड़) and Barari, a basket-maker and bamboo-worker in the higher hills who has also spread into the sub-montane tracts. He is not a scavenger by profession though he is said to worship Lal Beg, the Chuhras' deity. See Koli and Nirgalu.
  • Barhial ( बड़हियाल), a sept descended from Andeo Chand, son of Udai Chand fourteenth Raja of Kahlur. Another account makes them descendants of Raja Ajit Chand's younger son.
  • Barhai (बढाई). — A wood-cutter or carpenter in the hills (root badhna, to cut cf. Badhi). In Kullu the Barhai and Badhis are the same, but not in Kangra Proper. In Kullu they do not scruple to eat the flesh of dead animals. The Barhai are not a separate caste, but Kolis or Dagis that use the axe, and one of the Koli groups is returned as Barhai. There is also a Barhai tribe or clan among the Rathis of Kangra.
  • Barhi (बाढी). — The synonym for Tarkhan in the Jumna Districts. The Barhi considers himself superior to his western brother the Khati, and will not marry with him : his married women wear the nose-ring. Cf. Badhi and Barhai.
  • Bari (बारी), a caste in Bawal who make patals and dunas* of leave, while some are cooks to Hindu Rajputs. They are immigrants from Rajasthan and claim Rajput origin to which their got names point. These are Chauhan (who are Asawarias by persuasion), and others.
In marriage they avoid four gots, and also fellow-worshippers of the devi. Thus an Asawaria (असावरिया) may not marry an Asawaria Chauhan. At a wedding the pheras are not performed until the bride has put on ivory bangles— like a Rajput bride. They affect Bhairon, eat flesh and drink liquor, but Hindu Rajputs will eat food cooked by them and though now regarded as Sudras they are admitted to temples.
  • Baria (बरिया). Varya (वरया), a Rajput tribe, said in Jullandur to be Solar Rajputs descended from Raja Karan of the Mahabharat. Their ancestor Mal (!) came from Jal Kahra in Patiala about 500 vears ago. Those of Sialkot, where they are found in small numbers and rank as Jats, not Rajputs, say they are of Lunar Rajput descent. The tribe is practically confined to Patiala and Nabha and the name of the ancestor Mal, if common to the tribe, looks as if they were not Rajputs at all. Another form of the name appears to be 'Warah.' The Warah are descendants of Warah, whose grandson

* Patal a plats made of leaves (also a screen, made of reeds), duna, a cup made cf leaves. Both are generally made from the leaves of the dhak tree.
†* Devotees of Asawaria Devi, whose temple is at Sambhar in Jaipur.
Bariān - Barwālā
Rājā Banni Pāl, is said to have founded Bhatinda, after conquering Bhatner and marrying the daughter of its Rajā. Banni Pāl's son Udasi was defeated by a king of Delhi but received a jagir. His son Sundar had seven sons, of whom the eldest founded Badhar in Nabha. (Cf. Barian).
  • Barikka (बरिक्का). (s. m.). A low caste of Muhammadans.
  • Barkandaj (बरकंदाज). (s. m.). Corrupted from the Arabic word Barqandaz. A policeman; a constable ; a village watchman.
  • Barlas (बरलास), Barlasyi (बरलास्यी), a Mughal clan (agricultural) found in Amritsar.
  • Barwala (बरवाला), Batwal (बतवाल). These two names, though probably of different origin, are used almost as synonyms, the former being more common in the lower hills and the latter in the mountain ranges of Kangra. But in Chamba the Barwala is clearly distinct from the Batwal, being a maker of mats and winnowing fans, and the name is probably derived from bara or baria, the kind of grass used for them. Batwal or batwar on the other hand means a tax collector, and batwal is an ordinary peon of any caste even a Brahman, though of course he may be by caste a Batwal.†† At the capital, Chamba, Barwalas used to be employed as watchmen and thus went up in the social scale as Batwals. In Kangra however the Batwal form a true caste, while Barwala, is little more than the name of an occupation. Both words correspond very closely with the Lahbar or Balahar of the plains, and denote the village watchman or messenger. In the higher hills this office is almost

* For the Ghuzz Turks in Kurram see Raverty's translation of the Tabaqdt-i-Nasiri.
Caubul, p. 315. Also see the Saints of Jalandhar in Temple s Legends of the Punjab.
†† Dr J. Hutchison notes regarding the Batwals of Chamba that they claim descent from Siddh Kaneri, a deified ascetic of whom they know nothing. Formerly employed as watchen a few are still enlisted in the State Police. Barwalas and Batwals are all Hindus and have their own gotras, but Brahmans do not officiate at their weddings, which are solemnised by two literate men of the caste. Their observances follow the usage of the locality in which they are settled. Thus in Chamba the biyah or full wedding rite is observed as among the high castes though expense is curtailed and the ceremonies abridged. A Brahman fixes the day of the wedding. The dead are burnt.

Batwal customs

confined to the Batwalas, while in the lower hills it is performed by men of various low castes who are all included under the generic term of Barwala. These men are also the coolies of the hills, and in fact occupy much the same position there as is held by the Chamars in the plains, save that they do not tan or work in leather. In Kangra they are also known as Kirawak or Kirauk, a word which properly means a man whose duty it is to assemble coolies and others for begar or forced labour, and they are also called Satwag or " bearers of burdens." Like most hill menials they often cultivate land, and are employed as ploughmen and field labourers by the Rajputs and allied races of the hills who are too proud to cultivate with their own hands. They are true village menials, and attend upon village guests, fill pipes, bear torches, and carry the bridegroom's palanquin at weddings and the like, and receive fixed fees for doing so. In the towns they appear to be common servants. They are of the lowest or almost tho lowest standing as in caste, apparently hardly, if at all, above the Dumna or sweeper of the hills ; but the Batwal has perhaps a slightly higher standing than tho Barwala. Indeed the name of Barwala, is said to be a corruption of baharwala or "outsider," because, like all outcasts, they live in the outskirts of the village.

At Batwal weddings in Sialkot the learned among tho Meghs officiate. The Batwals have Brahman priests, but they do not conduct their marriage rites : they also avoid contact with them. The Batwala marry their girls at an early age, but allow widow-remarriage, and that too without regard to the husband's brother's claims. Two gots only are avoided. Batwals* are menials.

Birth observances. — Four or twelve months after the birth of a boy ritan are observed as follows : — Loaves of bread fried in oil are arranged in piles, seven in each heap, and the head of each family takes a pile and distributes it among its members. Only those who belong to the got in which the birth has taken place can take part in this feast. Among the Jhanjotra the head of a boy or girl is not shaved till the child begins to talk. Sometimes a bodi is retained, as among Hindus.

Their wedding ceremonies are thus described : —

Four posts are fixed in the ground and four more placed over these. On these four latter two turbans, supplied by the fathers or guardians of the bride or bridegroom, are spread. Then the bride's father places her hands in those of the bridegroom, saying : ' In God's name I give you this girl (my daughter or relation).' Then the pair, the bride's hands clasped in the bridegroom's, walk round an earthen pitcher placed inside the four upright posts. This duly done, the marriage is completed. On his way home the bridegroom has to wind some raw cotton seven times round a shrub.

Tho Batwals either burn or bury their dead. In either case on the way to the ground they halt and place two balls of leavened barley bread at the shoulders, and two at the feet, of the corpse. Thirteen

* The Batwals' folk-etymology derives their name from betwal, 'son of a daughter'. A Raja's daughter became enceinte by an illicit amour and was expelled her father's kingdom. A Chuhra took her to wife, but her child founded the Batwal caste.
At weddings food is thrown to tho crows — which birds tho Batwals are said to chiefly worship— and until they take the food the Batwals themselves will not eat.

Baryār — Bashera

days after the death they take to a Brahman a rupee and 4 sers of wheat flour, and these he carries to a tank, where he recites prayers. As amongst Hindus bhajjan* is performed after a death. Two yards of cotton cloth, knotted at the four corners, are hung over the left shoulder, in token of mourning, by the kin.

The remains of a body are taken either to the Ganges or to Parmandal.

The Batwals are not allowed to sell ghee and after a cow has calved they do not, eat ghi until some has been offered to a Brahman.

In Sialkot the Barwala gots are : — Dhagga, Jhanjotra, Kaith , Lakhutra , Lahoria, Molun or Molan, Nandan, Sangotra, Sargotra, Sindha ,

Each of the Batwal gots in Sialkot has its own temple, e. g., the Jhanjotra at Ghulhe in Zafarwal tahsil : the Kaith at Amranwali in Sialkot: and the Molan at Ghlanwala in Zafarwal. The temple is simply a mound of earth before which they prostrate themselves, each head of a family sacrificing at it a goat in honour of his eldest son.

In Kapurthala the Barwala gots are: —

Badial, Chakmak, Chandgirain, Chauhan, Dhadi, Jhajriha, Nāhra, Pambalia, Phankrain, Ratri, Soner.

With the Chandgirain got the other Batwals have no connection, and do not even smoke with them. Like the Batwals the Barwalas in Sialkot employ Meghs, who rank higher than the ordinary Meghs, as priests in religious and ceremonial observances.

The Barwalas make baskets in Sialkot. In Kapurthala they are village watchmen and messengers.

  • Basati (बसाती), Basatia (बसातिया), a pedlar ; a petty merchant.
  • Basha (बाशा), a synonym for Bhand, q. v. The term is applied to a jester or tumbler kept by wealthy men, also to an actor (and so equivalent to Bahrupia, especially in the Central Punjab). In Sialkot the Basha is said to be a class of Pernas. The Bashas are usually Muhammadans, and though probably mostly Mirasis by origin will not intermarry with them. The term is also applied generally to any immoral person. Bashas are also cuppers and toy-sellers.
  • Ba-shara (ब-शरा), 'regular : a term applied to the four great regular orders among the Sunni Muhammadans, viz., the Chishti, Qadiri, Saharwardi and Nakshbandi, who all uphold Sufi-ism. Opposed to Be-shara'

* Worship.
Bashgali - Bathmānu
  • Bashagali (बशागली), a tribe of the Siah-posh Kafirs : see under Kafir.
  • Bashkar (बष्कार) a group of non-Pathan tribes which used to occupy the Panjkora Kohistan or Kohistan-i-Malizai in Dir, the upper part of this Kohistan being known as Bashkār and the lower as Sheringal, but the Bashkar are now chiefly confined to the tract of that name. The Bashkari language is said to be the same as the Garhwi.
According to Biddulph the Bashkarik, as he terms them, have three clans ; Mulanor, Kutchkor and Joghior. The Bashkarik name the months thus : —
Hassan Husain,
Param Ishpo (first sister),
Dowim Ishpo (second sister),
Tlui Ishpo (third sister),
Chot Ishpo (fourth sister),
Suepi (great month),
Shokadr ,
Lokyul (small festival),
Miāna (intervening),
Gānyul (great festival),
See under Torwal.
  • Basi (बसी). a tribe of Jats, whose forebear Tulla has a mat at Gopalpur in Ludhiana. At the birth of a son, and also at the Diwali, earth is dug there in his name.
  • Bat (बट) , a Jat clan (agricultural) found in Multan. Also a sept of Kashmiri Pandit, converted to Islam and found in the north-west submotane Districts of the Punjab.
  • Batahra (बतहरा), (cf. Patahar), a stone-mason, a carver or dresser of stone, in the Kangra hills. In Kullu he is said to be a Koli who has taken to slate quarrying. In Chamba, however, they appear to form a true caste, working generally as stone-masons, but sometimes as carpenters or even cultivators. In Gurdaspur and Kangra the word is synonymous with Raj.
  • Bat (बाट), Bath (बाठ), a Jat clan (agricultural) found in Amritsar. Crowther gives the following list of the Bat septs :
which may all inter-marry, so that a Bat sometimes may marry a Bat. All these septs are said to be descendants of San-or Sainpal, who came from the Malwa 800 years ago. They first settled at Odhyara in Lahore. Khair(a)'8 descendants have two jatheras, Rajpal and his grandson Shahzada, who fell in a fight with the Kang Jats at Khadur Sahib in Amritsa. The Bath are also found as a Hindu and Muhammadan Jat clan in Montgomery.
  • Bathmanu (बथमानू), a Brahman al, of Bathmana village in Dhami and one of the chief tribes in that State. With the Jamogi Kanets it gives the raj-tilak to the Rana, and like them belongs to the Garg gotra. The wazir of the State usually belongs to one of these two septs.

* There is said to be a settlement of Januas (? Janjiias) 'beyond Pashiwar ' who have become Muhammadans.


The Bauria tribal system


  • Bauria, Bawaria (बावरिया). The following is Sir Denzil Ibbetson's account of the Bauria groups : — " They are said to be divided into three sections : the Bidawati of Bikaner who trace their origin to Bidawat in Jaipur, do not eat carrion, disdain petty theft but delight in crimes of violence, will not steal cows or oxen, and affect a superiority over the rest; the Jangali or Kalkamlia, also called Kāldhaballia — fr. dhabla, a skirt, the blanket, kamal, forming a petticoat, — generally found in the Jangaldesh of the Sikh States, Ferozepore, and Sirsa, and whose women wear black blankets ; and the Kāparia who are most numeroua in the neighbourhood of Dehli, and are notoriously a criminal tribe. The three sections neither eat together nor intermariy. The Kālkamlia is the only section which are still hunters by profession, the other sections looking down upon that calling. The Kāparia are for the most part vagrant ; while the Bidawati live generally in fixed abodes."
This account is amplified in an interesting account of the tribe by Mr. H. L. Williams of the Punjab Police. He gives the following table of their tribal system which is clearly based on the usual principle of territorial and other groups which cross-divide the natural sections* : —

* As regards the Baurias in Lyallpur Mr. J. M. Dunnett writes : — " There is a further and occupational division among tho Baurias, Non-cultivators are Kapria, Gumria, and Gadera, while Kaldhablia, Deswalia, Dewawate and Labana are cultivators. The division, I think, really means that some live by hunting pure and simple, the others combining agriculture with it. At any rate the difference in izzat is so great that intermarriage between two divisions is unknown. Why Gadera, which must mean a shepherd, is classed as non-agriculturist, while Labanas, who hunt pigs are classed as cultivators I do not know."

[Page-73] Bauria beliefs

Besides the derivation from bāwar, a snarc, which is the one usually given, Mr. Williams records other traditions as to the origin of the name 'Bauria'. According to one the emperor Akbar demanded a dola from Sandal, Raja of Chitor, and on the latter's refusing, a battle was fought, in which some of the warriors were engaged near a baoli or well. Those on the Rajput side were called Baolias or Bawalias. A third explanation is that, after the capture of Chitor, a young man of one of the tribes which had taken to the jungles saw and loved a Rajput maid of good lineage. They were married, but the young man returned to jungle life and was called Baola (imbecile) by tho bride'a relations for doing so, or on account of his uncouth manner. Mr. Williams' account continues : —

"Tradition says that the Bawarias are descendants of Chanda and Jora, and when Fatta and Jaimal, Rajputs of the Surajbans or Solar race, were joint Rajas of Chitor, Shahab-ud-din of Ghor assailed the fortress. It was defended by the Rajputs and their feudal military classes, of whom the Bhils were the professional bowmen ; the Aheris, the skilled swordsmen ; and the Bawarias, the bandukchis* or musketeers. In this connection the Bawarias, although claiming Rajput origin, do not profess to have been the equals of the Rajput ruling class, but rather their vassals or feudatories. Some few Bawarias still wear the Rajput badge of metal kara, or ring, on the right ankle.

"Of the now out-caste tribes, whom the Bawarias recognize as having shared with them the defence of Chitor, the Gadi Lohars, or wandering cutlers, are not only distinguished by the Rajput clan designations and silver and metal karas, but openly proclaim that they are doomed to a wandering existence till the Rajput power is again established in Chitor.

" The Bidawati Bawarias and others, whose place of origin is said to be Chhauni Bahaduran in Bikaner, claim to be descendants of Raja, Rasalu.

"Religion. — The religion of the Bawarias is ancestor worship combined with allegiance to certain deities who are common to them and other out-caste or foul-feeding tribes." Mr. Williams then remarks that several Bawaria clans affect Guga, many of their members wearing silver amulets with his image in relief. It would appear that the cult of Guga is specially affected by the clans of Chauhan descent, as Guga was a Rajput of that tribe and is peculiarly the patron of all clans which claim Chauhan origin. The Bhatis and other groups also affect Guga, and such groups as worship him do not affect Devi. Mr. Williams adds : —

" Ram Deo, supposed to have been an incarnation of Krishna, was the son of Ajmal, a Rajput of Ranchhal. He is specially reverenced by the Panwar sept and several of the wandering tribes. Similarly Kali, Lalta, Masani and other deities have devotees among the Bawarias. But the criminal members of the tribe make a special cult of Narsingh and pay their devotions to him in the following manner:— When planning a criminal expedition, a chiragh filled with ghi is ignited and a live coal placed beside it, ghi and halwa are added till both are in flame ; on the smoke and fumes, called Hom, arising, the persons present fold their hands and make supplication, saying : ' He,

* Similarly tho Machhis or Jhiwars claim to have been artillerists in the Native Indian Armies, and they also manufactured gunpowder, shot being made by the Lohars.
The Baurias in Gurgaon

Narsingh, through thy blessing we shall succeed. Remember to protect us.' The remains of the halwa are given to black dogs and crows.

Worship of the Sun also obtains in some septs. The cenotaph of an ancestor named Jujhar at Jhanda, in Patiala, is visited for religious parposes."

In Gurgaon and the tracts round that District the Baurias are divided into numerous groups. Of these the most important, locally, is the Jarulāwālā or Laturiā,* so called because its members wear long hair, like Sikhs. This group is endogamous and includes 14 gots:-

1 Badgujar.
2 Chauhan.1
3 Panwar.
4 Rathaur.
5 Agotia.2
6 Baghotia.3
7 Berara.4
8 Chaond.5
9 Dabria.6
10 Gangwa7
11 Jaghotia.8
12 Katoria.9
13 Kotia.
14 Mewatia.
15 Bhatti. (in Lahore)
16 Parwar. (in Lahore)
17 Sangra. (in Lahore)
18 Jagonsa.
19 Konja.

These 14 gots are strictly exogamous. "Widow re-marriage (karao) is permissible ; but not marriage outside the Jarulawala group. Even marriage with a Rajput woman, of a khanp from which the Bauria are sprung, is looked down upon, and the offspring are called suretwal, as among the Rajputs, or taknot. Such children find it difficult to obtain mates and, if boys, can only do so by paying heavily for their brides. Such men too are only allowed to smoke with pure Baurias after the nari has been removed from the huqqa.

The addition to (or possibly overlapping) this grouping are a number of occupational groups, as follows : —

1. Sehadaria, skilled in entering [sic) the burrows of the seh (porcupine) and found in Bhawani, Hissar District.

* But see 9 below.
The Bauria do not appear to become true Sikhs but, probably because many of them wear long hair, they are often said to be so. Regarding the Baurias of Lyallpur Mr. J M. Dunnett writes : — " They are, I find, all Hindus, out-casted of course, but still wearing the choti and burning their dead. In one Police station in anticipation of registration (as members of a Criminal Tribe) they had become Sikhs, but in no case had the pahul been taken before orders for registration had been issued. One man thus naively explained that he had all the kahkas except the kachh, and I had really come before he could get that made. In their zeal they had even gone the length of wearing a sixth kakka, called kanpan, a small spade, with which they said the patasha used in the pahul is stirred."
1. Sub-divided into 8 septs in Lahore, in which District they rank highest,
2. Of Panwar origin.
3. ? Bighotia, from Bighoto, but they are said to be named from Baghot a village in Nabha and to be descended from Jatu Rajputs.
4. Berara, so called from berar, a mixture of several kinds of grain ; the got is descended from a Panwar who married a woman of his own got by karewa.
5. From Chaond, a village.
6. From dab, a grass found in the Jumna river in lands whence they came ; the got claims Panwar or even Chauhan origin.
7. From beyond the Ganges : cf. Gangwalia a group mentioned below.
8.0f Badgujar origin.
9. The Katorias claim Rathaur extraction. But it is also said that the Baurias who live in Punjab are called Jarulawala or Katoria and wear long hair, like Sikhs. The Baurias of the United Provinces are styled Bidkias.
Or Sehodharia.
The Baurias in Gurgaon

2. Telbecha (तेलबेचा), dealers in the oil of the pelican and other birds, and found east of the Ganges. These have an off-shoot in the

3. Bailia (बैलिया), a group which modestly claims Jhiwar-Kahar origin, and is distinguished by churis (or an iron bangle) worn on the wrist.

4. Ugarwa (उगड़वा), an off-shoot of the Bagris who live by burglary.

5. Bhaurjalia (भौरजलिया) (sic) who use the baur (bāwar) or snare.

6. Badhak (बधक) or Badhakia (बधकिया), hunters, found in Bharatpur State, Mathura, etc.

7. Chirimar (चिड़ीमार), bird-snarers, found in tho same tracts.

Other groups are territorial, such as the —

1. Dilwalis (दिलवाली), found in Delhi and its neighbourhood. An off-shoot of this group is the Nariwal (नाड़ीवाल) which sells ropes.

2. Nagauria (नागौरिया), from Nagaur in Jodhpur State.

3. Bagri (बागड़ी), from the Bagar of Bikaner.

4. Marus (मरु), from Marwar.

Other groups of less obvious origin are also found. Such are the —

1. Kaldhablia (काल-धाबलिया) or Kāldhablia, who wear the black woolen cloak (kamli) and are found in the Patia1a State and to the west of Bhiwani.

2. Gangwalia (गंगवालिया),* found in Jaipur State.

3. Habura (हाबुरा), vagrants from the east of the Jumna.

4. Gandhila (गंधीला), found on any riverain in the Punjab (? proper) and also east of the Jumna.

5. Ahiria (अहिरिया), found in and about Hodal and Palwal. According to a Brahman parohit of the Ahirias at Hodal the Baurias and Ahirias are descended from Goha, a Bhil, one of whose descendants married a Thakur. Her children by him became Ahirias (Heria or Heri, lit. a hunter), while the Baurias are of pure Bhil blood. Closely allied to the Ahiria are the Badhaks. The Ahiria and Bauria do not intermarry.

The panch, who are chosen from the four khanps and the Mewatia group, are regarded as leaders of the tribe. They form a panchayat (or ? a panchayat for each khanp) for the whole group. Offenses are tried before the panchayat which administers to the offender an oath on the Ganges or the Jumna : or he is made to advance five paces towards the sun and invoke its curse if he is guilty : but the most binding oath is that taken while plucking the leaf of a pipal tree. Fines go towards the expenses of the panchayat, and any surplus to the panch. Panchayats also solemnize the marriages of widows and the fee then realised is paid to the widow's father-in-law.

The Bauria sehrhs.

Tradition avers that when a rani of Nimrana married she was accompanied by five families of Rathaur Baurias from whom are descended the present Rathaur (? Baurias or) Rajputs. Hence the

* Not, apparently, the same as the Gangal got mentioned above.
Apparently named Karaul, and founder of the State of Karauli.

The Bauria cults

Rathaurs* regard Nimrana as their Sehrh and worship Devi at her temple there. The Panwars have their sehrh at Kaliana near Narnaul : the Badgujars theirs at Kanaund : and the Chauhans at Ranmoth near Mandhan in Alwar (tah:Jat Behror).

The Dabrias specially affect Masāni Devi but the Baurias as a whole have no distinctive cults and few special observances. Some of them wear the hair long in honour of Masāni Devi, to whom a childless man vows that if a child be vouchsafed to him its hair shall remain uncut. Some Baurias also wear the patri, an ornament shaped like a jugni and made of gold ; in case of sickness prayer is offered through (sic) the patri to the pitars, 'ancestors' and on recovery the sufferer has a patri made and wears it round his neck. At meal times it is touched and a loaf given in alms in the pitars names.†† Another charm is the devi kā dānā, a few grains of corn, which are carried on the person and which, like the patri, avert all evil.

The Devi at Nagarkot, Zahir Pir (Guga) and Thakurji ( ? Krishna) are other favourite deities of the Baurias, but the Sun god is also propitiated in times of calamity or sickness. Fasts (hart) are kept on Sunday in honour of the Sun, and water thrown towards it. The janeo is never worn. For some reason not explained an oath on a donkey is peculiarly binding. Mr. Williams notes that Baurias are said not to ride the donkey and to regard it with peculiar aversion. Oaths are also taken on the cow and the pipal tree.

The Baurias are strict Hindus, refusing to eat anything, even ghi which has been touched by a Muhammadan, though they will drink water from a bhishti's skin, but not that kept in his house. Baurias will only eat meat procured by themselves or killed by jhatka. Pork they eschew, but not the flesh of the wild pig.§ The nilgai is regarded as a cow and never eaten, nor is the flesh of a he-buffalo save by the Baurias of Shaikhawati in Jaipur. As they are no longer permitted to possess swords they slaughter goats with the chhuri.

In Lahore, where the Baurias are said to be non-criminal, they have a dialect of their own called Ladi. Elsewhere their patois is called Lodi and is said to be understood by Bhils, Sānsis, Kanjars and such like tribes. The Bāwariah dialect is called Ghirhar, and sometimes Pashtu.

* And the Katorias, as being of Rathaur descent.
Mr. Williams says : — 'Goats are offered to Devi and, at the time of oblation, water is sprinkled on the animal's head ; if it shakes its ears the omen is propitious and Devi has accepted the sacrifice.' And Mr, Dunnett writes : — " In Lyallpur the worship of a devi is admitted by all but the Songira Dharmwat who revere Bhairkiya and Narswer (Narsingh).
The devi is worshipped in jungles at the sacred tree. At its roots a square is marked out with stones, and in the centre a hole is dug. A he-goat is then slain, and the blood poured into the hole, the holy tree and the foreheads of the worshippers being also sprinkled. Over the hole a hearth is then constructed, on which the skull, the left fore-leg, liver, kidneys and fat are burned. The remainder is then cooked on the same hearth, and eaten by the worshippers. The ceremonial is of course based on the idea that the god is of the brotherhood of the tribe."
†† 'When anyone is in trouble, the cause is ascribed to his having angered a departed spirit, called patar, to appease which some crumbs are fried in oil and put in a brazier, before which all those present fold their hands and beat their brows.' (Williams).
§ In some parts the Bauris will, it is said, cat the flesh of animals which have died a natural death.
Bauria customs

Birth observances. — The child's name is chosen by a Brahman. On the fifth day after birth the mother takes a lota full of water on her head to the nearest well, a Brahmani and Nain, with other women, accompanying her and singing songs. She rakes with her bhanjor (moistened grain) of gram or bajra and after worshipping the well throws some of the bhanjor, with a little water out of her lota and a makka brought by the Brahmani or Nain into the well. The rest of the bhanjor is distributed among children. The mother is deemed purified on the tenth day. Rathaur children are taken to the sehrh at Nimrana to have their heads shaved, but the Panwars, Chauhans and Badgujars all take theirs to Masani Devi at Gurgaon.

Wedding rites.— Betrothal is not specially initiated by either side, but as soon as the negotiations have reached a certain stage the girl's father, his Brahman or nai goes with the tika and even the poorest man confirms the agreement by presenting a rupee to the boy. Well-to-do people give him a camel or gold earrings.

Bauria men are, in their youth, sometimes branded. Most of their women are tattooed in one or more places on the face, viz., near the outer corners of the eyes, at the inner corner of the left eye, on the left cheek and on the chin : hence Bauria women are easily recognizable.

Baurias do not marry within their own got, and it is said that the bridegroom must not be younger than the bride, and that a blind or one-eye'd man must espouse a blind or one-eye'd woman ! In some tribes, adds Mr. "Williams, fair women are only married to fair men, and the black skinned, which form the majority, mate with one another.

The girl's father intimates the date fixed for her wedding by sending a sāaha chitthi written in Sanskrit, and on the day fixed the wedding party goes to the girl's house. The bridegroom wears the sehra and his forehead is smeared with haldi. The ceremonies are all in essence the same as those observed by the Rajputs, except that no khera is named, for the simple reason that the Baurias have no fixed abodes. Weddings are, however, not solemnised by sending the patka or katar in lieu of the bridegroom. Bauria brides wear a necklace made of horse hair on which are threaded gold and silver beads. This is called sohag sutra and it is worn till the husband's death, when it is burnt with his corpse.

On a man's death his elder and then his younger brother have the first claim to his widow's hand. Failing such near kinsmen a stranger may espouse her on payment of pichha, a sum assessed by the panches and paid by the new husband to the nearest agnate of the deceased's father.

Co-habitation with a woman of another caste is punished by not allowing the offender to smoke with the brotherhood, and the woman is regarded as a suret and her children as suretwal even though she be a pure Rajput by caste. Infidelity on a wife's part is purged away by pressing a red hot iron into her tongue.*

* Mr. Williams' account of the Bawaria marriage customs is however different and runs as follows : — "Each tribal sub-division is endogamous, and eachh got exogamous to tho father's got. Marriage is permitted in the mother's got excluding near relations. Marriage within the
Bauria sport

The observances at death differ in no way from those current among orthodox Hindus. The bones of the dead are taken to Garh Muketsar and there thrown into the Ganges. Mr. Williams however writes : — "The dead over seven years of age are burnt among most of the tribes, though some, as the Bidawati, practise burial. The corpse of a young: person is draped with fine white cloth, of an old man with coarse cloth, and of a woman with turkey red. On the third day after a funeral, boiled rice is distributed among young girls. When a Bawaria wife is cremated her widower lights the pile. A father performs the same office for a son, a son for a father, on failing such relationship, any near relative. On the third day following, the ashes are collected and rice is laid on seven pipal leaves and placed at the foot of the tree, certain persons being told to watch from a distance. If a crow eats the rice, it is a good omen ; but bad if a dog devours it. The period of mourning lasts twelve days. The ceremony of shradh is performed in Assu, when rice is given to crows, the idea being to supply the necessities of the deceased in another world."

Sporting Propensities. — A distinguishing feature of this people is their shikarring: proclivities. In all parts of the Province they have dogs, large meshed nets for catching jackals and other vermin, and thong nooses for antelope. Where jungle is thick and game plentiful, sport sometimes takes the form of slaughter. Game is gradually driven into an enclosure formed by two lines of stakes, several feet apart, each tipped with a coloured rag and forming an angle at the apex of which are planted in several parallel rows the little bamboo stakes with slip knot thongs, looking in the distance like a patch of dry grass. The third side of the triangle is formed by the Bawarias with dog and torn toms. When the beat begins, the line of beaters advances

prohibited degrees of consanguinity is punished with excommunication up to a period of 12 years, as among the Kuchband and other cognate tribes. The higher gots in the social scale are the Solkhi, or Sulankhi, Panwar, Chohan, Bhati, and Sankhla, and hence intermarriage ith them is sought after for the sake of their blue blood.
Marriage and betrothal occur when both sexes have arrived at adult age. Sons may remain unmarried without incurring odium ; but, in the case of daughters, the panchayat interferes and penalties are inflicted if too much time is allowed to pass.
The ceremonies at betrothalsāk or mangani — are simple. An emissary of the suitor meets, by appointment, the girl's relatives and hands a sum ranging from Rs. 5 to 9 to the senior male relative present, who pays the amount to the girl's father. The suitor is then invited, if acceptable, to the evening meal, when the contract is made. An interval then passes before the date of marriage is fixed, previous to which the girl's paternal uncle visits the suitor and gives him a rupee. Seven days before the wedding, the same relative presents himself and ties black cotton tags round the youth's ankles.
Marriage is always by phera, as among tribes of the same category . On the day appointed, four wooden pegs, a span long, are driven into the ground forming a square, a fire lit in the centre and cotton seed steeped in oil placed over it. A square copper coin (mansuri paisa) is put on the top of each peg. The couple circle seven times round the fire with a knot tied in their garments, and the ceremony ends. A Brahman is usually present and receives a donation of Rs. 2 to 5, Rs. 24 to 100, according to the status of the parties, is paid to the bride's parents, who prepare an outfit of cooking utensils and clothing, and return some of the rupees in a thāli, or brass vessel. The home-coming, or muklāwa ceremony comes last and consists in the bride's being sent to her husband's house with a gift of a chadar from her parents.
Marriage by karewa is permitted and is the only form permissible to widows. It is availed of when a woman is destitute, or has no parents. A surviving brother is required to marry the widow, and, in default, she may claim ompensation through a panchāyat. When a widow marries, bracelets of lacquer are put on her and a fine of Rs. 5 imposed. A woman convicted of adultery is disgraced and her chadar torn, the male accomplice being fined from Rs. 2 to 4 by the panchayat"
with great noise and howling, causing the game to gallop away until the line of stakes is reached, when scared by the coloured rags the animals glance aside and speed towards the apex, where a clear space appears with no visible obstacle hut some tufts of familiar grass. In attempting to clear these, some antelope are caught in the thongs and thrown violently to the ground, when their throats are cut.
  • Bawa (बावा), fem. Bawi (बावी) (1), a title given to the male descendants of the first three Gurus of the Sikhs ; (2) a. fakir or sādhu; the head of an order of monks.
  • Bazaz (बजाज), (1) a cloth-dealer; (2) a section of the Aroras.
  • Bazigar (बाज़ीगर), fr. Pers. bazi, ' play.' The Bazigar is usually a Muhammadan the Nat a Hindu. Among the Bazigar both sexes perform, but among Nats only the males. Some say the Bazigar is a tumbler and the Nat a rope-dancer, others that the former is a juggler and also an acrobat, the latter an acrobat only. In the Eastern Punjab the Bazigar is termed Bādi. See Nat.
In Ferozepur the Bazigars have a shrine at Sadhaiwala, built in honour of an old woman who died not many years ago. Liquor is poured into a cup-shaped hole in this tomb and drunk. Weddings in families which affect this shrine are generally solemnised there. They have a Raja, and his wife is Rani. Both settle disputes without appeal and are almost worshipped, the latter being attended by a number of women who carry her long train. Bazigar camps consist of reed huts pitched in regular lines. The 'caste' is said to be recruited from various castes, even Brahmans and Jats, but each sub-division is endogamous. The Bazigara are in fact only an occupational group.


  • Beda (बेदा), (1) a musician caste in Ladakh : see Ind. Art. 1901, p. 330 ; (2) the caste which supplies the potential victim who rides on the rope at the Bihunda sacrifices in the Upper Sutlej valley : see North Indian Notes and Queries, IV, § 144.
  • Bedi (बेदी), fem. Bedan [i.q., vedi), a section of the Khatri caste to which Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikhism, belonged. It is divided into two sub-sections, which intermarry.
  • Beldar (बेलदार),fr. bell mattock. One who works in mortar, etc., with a hoe or a spade, a labourer whose work is to dig or delve. In the Western Punjab the term is applied to the Od, q. v.

* The Sanskrit ambashtha or vaidya 'vulg. baidya, bed), a professor of medicine^begotten by a Brahman on a Vaisya woman. (Colebrooke's Essays, p. 272). "
In Traill's Statistical Account of Kumaon (reprinted from Asiatick Researches Vol XVI in Offirial Reports on the Province of Kumaon, 1878) at p. 51 an account is given of the propitiatory festivals held in villages dedicated to Mahadeva. At these badis or rope-dancers are engaged to perform on the tight-rope or slide down an inclined rope stretched from the summit of a cliff to the valley beneath. The badis do not appear to be a caste.

Benach - Bhābṛā
  • Be-nawa (बे-नवा) (? ba-nawa:बा-नवा ) (1) a doubtful syn. for be-shara: (2)— or Bā-nawā,* according to Mr. Maclagan one of the most prominent of the Be-shara or unorthodox orders of Islam, and said to be followers of one Khwaja Hasan Basri. The term is sometimes apparently applied in a loose manner to Qdari and Chishti faqirs, but it is properly applicable only to a very inferior set of beggars — men who wear patched garments and live apart. They will beg for anything except food, and in begging they will use the strongest language ; and the stronger the language, the more pleased are the persons from whom they beg. Many of the offensive names borne by villages in the Gujrawala District are attributed to mendicants of this order, who have been denied an alms. The proper course is to meet a Be-nawa beggar with gibes and put him on his mettle ; for he prides himself on his power of repartee, and every Be-nawa wears a thong of leather which he has to unloose when beaten in reply, and it is a source of great shame for him to unloose this thong (tasma khol denā). The Be-nawas appear to be rare in the west of the Punjab, and those in our returns are mainly from Karnal, Jalandhar, Ludhiana and Hoshiarpur.
  • Be-shara (बे-शरा), a term applied to the irregular or unorthodox orders of Islam whose followers, while calling themselves Musalmans, do not accommodate their lives to the principles of any religious creed : cf. āzād. The Be-shara orders include the Be-nawa, Gurzmar, Madari and Rasul-shahis.
  • Besku (बेस्कु), s.m. (K.), the watchman of harvested grain.
  • Beta (बेता) (incorrectly Batia),a small out-caste group found in Spiti, corresponding to the Hesis of Kullu. They live by begging, making whips for the men and bracelets of shell for the women, and attending weddings as musicians along with the blacksmiths. Blacksmiths do not eat with them or take their women as wives. Merely to drink water out of another man's vessel conveys no pollution in Spiti, and in the higher parts of the Spiti valley the hookah is also common to all : while in the lower parts Hesis are merely required to smoke from the bowl of the common pipe through a stem provided by themselves.
  • Betu (बेतु), the synonym for Dagi (q.v.) used in the Saraj tahsil of Kullu.
  • Bethi (बेठी), a Sayyid clan (agricultural) found in Amritsar.


  • Bhabra (भाबड़ा) , fem. Bhabri,a caste of the Jainis, chiefly engaged in trade. The term Bhābṛā appears to be of great antiquity, being found in an inscription of Asoka. The name is now fancifully derived from Bhaobhala, 'one of good intent' but in Jullundur the Bhabras attribute their name to their refusal to wear the janeo at the instance of one Bir Swami, who thereupon declared that their faith (bhu) was great. The term Bhabra however appears to be used by outsiders of any Banias, especially of the Oswals and others whose home is in Rajasthan, whether they

* Be-nawa can be the only correct form, meaning "without the necessaries of life", a a mendicant.
Bhao, motive, bhala, good

The Bhabra groups

are Jains by religion or not. This would appear to be the case in Rawalpindi, and in Sirsa the Sikh immigrants from Patiala certainly call the Oswal Banias Bhabras.

The Bhabras of Hoshiarpur are an interesting community. As a caste they have two groups, each comprising various gots or als, viz. : —

Group I. — Oswals' Gots : Bhabhu. Nahar. Gadhia. Mahmia. Duggar. Liga. Lohra. Seoni. Tattar. Barar. Ranke. Karnatak. Baid. Bhandari. Chatar.

Group II. — Khanderwals' Gots: Bhaursa. Sethi. Seoni. Bhangeri.

The Oswal came originally from Osia in Jaipur, the Khanderwal from Khandela in Jodhpur. As to the origin of the got names, Mahmia or Maimia is derived from Mahm, the Down in Rohtak, and was originally called Dhariwal. Seoni (which occurs in both the groups) is a Khatri clan. The Liga (who perform the first tonsure, or mundan, at home) came from Sultanpur, in Kapurthala : the Tandwai, of Tanda (? in Hoshiarpur) are an al of the Bhabhus, formed only a 100 years ago and not yet a got. The Nahar or 'lions ' once drank the milk of a lioness and hail from Jaipur. The Gadhia are called Churria in Rajasthan. Most Bhabras cut their boys' hair for the first time at Dadi Kothi (now called Kangar Kothi), their temple near Jaijon. Most of the Hoshiarpup Bhabras are Oswals, of the Bhabhu and Nahar, those of Balachaur being Gadhia and Nahar by got. Some Bhabras respect Brahmans and employ them on social occasions, at weddings and funerals, and for the shradhs, though the Jain tenets forbid the shradh observances. The Khanderwals alone appear to wear the janeo. In Jind the Jains are said to be recruited, from the Aggarwal,* Oswal, Srimal, and Khandelwal Banias, but the last three are also styled Bhabras— whether Jains or not. Jain Aggarwals are said to intermarry with the Vaishnava Aggarwals in that State but not in Karnal. Another account from Jind states that the Oswal are bisa, i. e., of pure descent, while the Srimal are only dasa, i. e., of impure descent, and that these two groups do not intermarry. The Oswal are also stated to avoid only the paternal got

* An account of rather doubtful authority makes the Oswals and Khandelwala only 'Bbaos,' the Bagri form of bhai, ' brother' — and derives Bhabra from bhao — because Parasnath was an Oswal of the ruling family of Osnagar. It makea the Aggarwalas, Saraogis, i.e., sikhs or disciples. Each group is said to be endogamous, i. e, Bhabra do not intermarry with Sarogia.
Another account says that both Oswal and Srimal contaia bisa and dasa classes, the dasa being in a minority in both groups-

Bhachar — Bhagti

in marriage, while the Srimal observe the four-got rule. On the other hand the Bhabras of Nabha are said to have two sub-castes : Oswal, who observe the four-got rule, and Kundewal (? Khandelwal), who avoid only the paternal got in marriage.* And again in Maler Kotla the 'Bhabras or Oswals' are said to avoid two gots. The Jain Bhabras are strictly monogamous, a second wife not being permitted during the life-time of the first under any circumstances. For further information regarding the Aggarwdl, Oswal, etc., see Bania, and for the Jain sectarian divisions see Jain.

  • Bhadiar (भदियार), a tribe of Jats, in Sialkot, which claims Solar Rajput origin and is descended from its eponym. Atu, 7th in descent from him, came from Ajudhia and took service under the Rajas of Jammu.
  • Bhagat (भागत), an agricultural clan found in Shahpur.
  • Bhagat-panthi (भगत-पंथी). — A sect of the Nanak-panthis which appears to be quite distinct from the Bhagtis or followers of Baba Suraj of Chāha Bhagtāi in the Kahuta tahsil of Rawalpindi. It is found in the Bannu District, in Paharpur, and in tahsil Dera Ismail Khan. Though they reverence the Granth, the Nanak-panthis observe the usual Hindu ceremonies at marriage or death, but the Bhagat-panthis do not. They take the Granth to their houses, and read certain portions of it at weddings. Marriage and betrothal ceremonies may be performed at a dharmsala, or the marriage may be celebrated by taking the Granth to the house and there reciting portions of it. No funeral rites are performed and the dead are buried, not burnt. Passages from the Granth are read for a few days after the death. And on occasions of marriage or death harāh prashād is distributed. There is no rule of chhut or 'touch,' forbidding contact with other castes. The sect makes no pilgrimages, avoids idolatry, and performs no shrādh for the dead. Daily worship is an essential duty and consists in recitations of the Granth at six stated hours of the day, viz., before sunrise, before noon, fternoon, before sunset, in the evening and at night. At worship they sit down eight times, rising eight times and making eight prostrations. This sect thus strives after pure Sikhism and freedom from Brahmanical supremacy.
  • Bhagti (भगती), a Gosain sub-sect or order, said to have been founded by Kanshi Ram, a brother of Saindas. The latter was a Brahman Bairagi whose son Ramanand has a shrine, well-known in and about the Gujranwala District, at Baddoke. His sect has many followers among the more respectable Khatris and Brahmans of Lahore and its neighbourhood.

* Till recently the Oswal of the Punjab avoided two gots in marriage, and the Dhundias among them still do so, but in 1908 a great assemblage of the Pujeras resolved that only the paternal got need be avoided.
This is however said to be merely a counsel of perfection.

Bhagti — Bhango
  • Bhagtia (भगतिया), a musician who accompanies dancing boys.
  • Bhakral (भकराल), one of the group of tribes which hold considerable areas in the south-east of the Rawalpindi District. The Bhakral are also found in some numbers in Jhelum and Gujrat. Like the Budhal they probably came from the Jammu territory across the Jhelum. They do not approve of widow marriage. A laige number of the tribe also return themselves as Punwar in Rawalpindi, and the tribe may be classed as Rajput.
  • Bhamye (भम्ये), a Gujar clan (agricultural) found in Amritsar.
  • Bhand (भाण्ड), Bhand. — The Bhand or Naqqal is the story-teller, joker, and buffoon, and is often also called Bāsha. The name comes from the Hindi bhanda "buffooning." He is separate from, and of a lower professional status than, the Bahrupia. Both are commonly kept by Rajas* and other wealthy men like the jester of the early English noble, but both also wander about the country and perform to street audiences. The Bhand is not a true caste any more than the Bahrupia, and is probably often a Mirasi by caste. Elliott seems to imply that Bahrupia is a caste and Bhand an occupation; but the former statement is certainly not true in the Punjab.
  • Bhandela (भंदेला), a minor caste found in Sirmur, and correspouding to the Sikligar of the plains. They appear to have come from Marwar in the Mughal times and retain their peculiar speech and intonation. Sikhs by religion, they are dealers in arms, etc , by occupation, and are said to be much given to crime.
  • Bhanggi (भंग्गी), fern. Bhanggan (भंग्गन) (also a woman who drinks bhang). A man of the sweeper caste : also a man belonging to the Bhanggi misl.
  • Bhanggia (भंग्गिया), fern. Bhanggeran (भंग्गेरण), a dealer in bhang.
  • Bhango (भंगो), a tribe of Jats found in Sialkot which claims Solar Rajput ancestry and is descended from its eponym, who came from Nepal. Also found in Amritsar (agricultural) ; and in Montgomery as a Hindu Jat clan (agricultural).

* Kadeh Bhand, known as Kadir Bakhsh. was a famous Bhand, who need to go from one court to another. The Maharaja of Patiala gave him a village.
Bhangu - Bharāi
  • Bhangu (भंगू), Bhanggu (भंग्गु),* a Jat tribe which does not claim Rajput origin. The Bhangu and Nol were among the earliest inhabitants of the Jhang District and held the country about Shorkot, the Nol holding that round Jhang itself before the advent of the Sials, by whom both tribes were overthrown. Probably the same as the Bhango, supra.
  • Bhanjra (भंजरा), a synonym for Dumna in the lower hills of Hoshiarpnr and Gurdaspur. He makes sieves, winnowing fans and other articles of grass and bamboo. Like the Sansois, Sarials and Daolis, the Bhanjras may be regarded as an occupational group cf the Dumnas, with whom they intermarry.
  • Bhanot (भनोत), a Rajput clan which occupies a bārah or 12 villages immediately north of Garhshankar round Padrawa, Salempur and Posi. The name is fancifully derived from ban, because they once dwelt in the banot or shadow of the ban or forests of the Siwaliks, and they are said to have come from Bhatpur, a village close to that range not now held by them. They appear to have been an al of the Narus.
  • Bhao (भाव), a sept of Raghubansi Rajputs, found in Gujrat, immigrants from Ajudhia into Jammu and thence into the Gujrdt sub-montane. The name, which perhaps suggests a Rajasthan origin, is said to be derived from the fear (bhao) which the tribe inspired : but others say the Bhao were free-booters and hence earned the title. The Bhao rank high, and they, the Manhas and Jural, greet one another ' Jai deo. ' They also inter marry with the Chibhs of Kadhale and Ambariala; but not with the rest of that tribe, owing to an ancient feud. The first tonsure is performed at Kilit, a place in Samrala, in Jammu territory.
  • Bharais (भराईस) — The Bharāis who are scattered throughout these Provinces are also known as Pirhain, a name which is explained thus: —
(i) One Bukan Jat was a devotee of Sakhi Sarwar who one day said to him tujhe piri di, 'the saint's mouth has fallen on thee', whence the name Pirhai.
(ii) Another account says that after leaving Dhaunkal, Sakhi Sayyid Ahmad went to Multan and rested for a while at Parahin, a place south of Shahkot, which was the home of his mother's ancestors, Rihan Jats by caste. At Multan an Afghan chief had a daughter to whose hand many of the Shahkot youths aspired, but none were deemed

* The Panjahi Diciy. gives Bhangus (sic) as 'an original tribe (M ).'
The form Pirhain is said to be in use in Saharanpur. The word pariah is also said to mean drummer and is possibly connected with Bharai - Crooke : Things Indian
Bharāi traditions

worthy. One day, however, the Afghan invited Sayyid Ahmad to a feast and begged him to accept his daughter in marriage. This offer the saint accepted, and the sihra below, which was composed on this occasion, is still sung with great reverence. The mirasi, however, neglected to attend the wedding punctually, and when he did appear, rejected the saint's present of a piece of blue cloth, 1-1/4 yards in length, at the instigation of the Jats and Pathans, saying it was of no use to him. Hearing this the , Sayyid gave it to Shaikh Buddha, a Jat who had been brought up with him, saying : "This is a bindi (badge), tie it round your head, and beat a drum. We need no mirasi, and when yon are in any difficulty remember me in these words : — Daimji Rabdia sawāria, bohar Kali Kakki-wādlia — Help me in time of trouble, thou owner of Kali Kakki ! You and your descendants have come under our protection, panāh, and you shall be called pāndhi." This term became corrupted into Parahin in time. Thus the account contradicts itself, as the name is said to be derived from Parahin, a place.

The term Bharai itself is usually derived from chauhi bharnā, lit. 'to keep a vigil,' in which are sung praises of the Sakhi. But another and less simple account says that owing to his marriage Sayyid Ahmad incurred the enmity of the Jats and Pathans of Shahkot and left that place for Afghanistan, accompanied by Bibi Bai, Rānā Mian, and his younger brother. Twenty-five miles from Dera Ghazi Khan they halted. No water was to be found, so the Sayyid mounted his mare Kali Kakki and at every step she took water came up. His pursuers, however, were close at hand, and when they overtook him the Sakhi was slain, and buried where he fell. The spot is known as Nigaha and still abounds in springs.

Years after Isa, a merchant of Bokhara, and a devotee of Sakhi Sarwar, was voyaging in the Indian Ocean when a storm arose. Isa invoked the saint's aid and saved the ship. On landing he journeyed to Multan where he learnt that the saint had been killed. On reaching Nigaha he found no traces of his tomb, but no fire could be kindled on the spot, and in the morning as they loaded the camels their legs broke. Sakhi Sarwar descended from the hill on his mare, holding a spear in his hand, and warned the merchant that he had desecrated his tomb and must rebuild it at a cost of 1-1/4 lakhs. He was then to bring a blind man, a leper, and an eunuch* from Bokhara and entrust its supervision to them. One day when the blind man stumbled near the tomb he saved himself by clutching at some kahi grass where-upon his sight was restored and his descendants are still known as the Kahi. The eunuch was also cured and his descendants are called Shaikh. The leper too recovered, and his descendants, the Kalang, are still found in Nigaha. To commemorate their cures all three beat a drum, and Sakhi Sarwar appeared to them, saying ; "He who is my follower will ever beat the drum and remain barahi, 'sound,' nor will he ever lack anything." Hence the pilgrims to Nigaha became known as Bharais.

* For eunuchs as attendants at shrines see Burton's Pilgrimage to Medina and Mecca Vol. I, p. 371.
*Cf. Bhara in the phrase raho hara bhara, ' remain green and prosperous or fruitful ' P.Dy., p. 430.

Bharai — Bharbhunja

Strictly speaking the Bharais do not form a caste, but an occupational group or spiritual brotherhood which comprises men of many castes, Dogar, Habri, Rawat, Dum, Rajput, Mochi, Gujar, Tarkhan and last, but not least, Jat. They belong to the Muhammadan religion, but in marriage they follow the Hindu customs. Thus a Jat Bharai may only marry a Jat woman, and in Kangra, it is said, she too must be a Bharai. In Ambala, however, a Bharai may marry any Jatni, and in Kapurthala it is said that, being Muhammadans, marriage within the got is permitted, and that; Rajput Bharais may take wives from Jat Bharais. There appears indeed to be no absolute or even general rule, but the tendency apparently is for the Bharais recruited from any one caste to form a separate caste of Bharais, marrying only in that caste, e.g., in Ludhiana the Jat Bharai only marries a Bharai Jatni, and the gots avoided are the same as among the Jats. The Jat Bharais are numerous. They claim descent from one Garba Jat (गारबा), a Hindu attendant at Sakhi Sarwar's shrine, who was in a dream bidden by the saint to embrace Islam. On conversion he was called Shaikh Garba. The Jat Bharais have several gots: — Dhillon, Deo, Rewal Garewal, Man, Randhawa, Jham, Karhi and Badecha.

Marriage Dower. — The amount of mehr, given according to Muhammadan Law to the wife by the husband, never exceeds Rs. 32-6 ; while the minimum dowry given to the bride by her father consists of Rs. 21 in cash and 5 copper vessels.

Insignia. — The Bharai's insignia are a drum (dhol), beaten with a curiously-shaped stick, like a short crook ; a wallet (khallar) hung round the neck by a string. The stick and khallar are peculiar to the Bharais. The standard of the Pirhais is a fringe (jagadhri) of tassels on a long pole. These fringes are presented by women as thank- offerings for the birth of sons and at weddings. They are supposed to be tied round the forehead of the saint as they would be tied on a bridegroom's forehead.

Food. — It is said that in many places Bharais eat only goat's flesh, and that leprosy would afflict him who ate any other kind of flesh. But this restriction is certainly not universal. Beef is avoided, because, it is said, the Bharais have many Hindu votaries.

  • Bhar Bhonchi (भर भोंची), a class of Jogis who charm away scorpion stings.
  • Bharbhunjas (भड़भूंजा) — Bharbhunja, lit. one who roasts grain in an oven — form an occupational caste comprising only 4 gots, viz. : —
1. Jadubansi ... (Ahir got).
2. Bhatnagar) ... (Kayath got).
3. Saksain ... (Kayath got).
4. Basdeo* ... (Brahman got).

* Basdeo, father of Krishna, appears to have been worshipped by the Ahira also.

Bharbhunja groups

As the gots are so few, only one got is avoided in marriage, but the caste is said to be strictly endogamous in Patiala, and outsiders are never admitted into hie caste.

By religion Bharbhunjas are both Hindus and Muhammndans. Like other Hindus the former invoke Sada Shiva when commencing work, as the shop is regarded as his thara (platform). Subhas, another deota, is also worshipped at weddings, sherbet and some copper pice being offered him, tmd cooked food distributed in his name.

A Bharbhunja wife may not wear glass bangles or blue clothes or a nose-ring (laung).

Bharbhunjas only make harts at weddings; and only eat food cooked by Brahmans. They wear the janeo, but permit karewa, the husband's brother's claims being recognised. They preserve an old system of local panchdyats, with hereditary chaudhris, in which all caste disputes are settled. At weddings, etc., the chaudhri gives the lag and receives 1-1/2 shares in the bhaji. Bharbhunjas mostly pursue their creed and calling, but some take to service. In appearance they are dark and under-sized.

In the Nabha State the Bharbhunjas have two occupational groups, the Dhankuta or " rice-huskers " (from dhan, rice, and kutna) and the Mallahs or boatmen. These two groups do not intermarry, or drink together, but they smoke from the same huqah with a different mouth- piece. The Mallahs use a large spoon, the Dhankutas a sharp crooked instrument, in parching gram. Both groups are found in the Bawal Nizamat of this State. In the Phul and Amloh Nizamats the Kayasths, a sub-group of the former, claim origin from that caste, and it is said : — Parhgiya jo Kayastha, varna bhatti jhokan la'iq : 'He who acquires knowledge is a Kayastha, otherwise he is only fit to parch grain.' Hence many Kayasths have joined the Bharbhunja caste. In Bawal the Bharbhunja gots are named from the place of origin, e.g., Mandauria, from Mandaur in Alwar, and Chhatagia from Chhatag. Elsewhere their gots are Jadu-bansi, Cbandar-bansi, (claiming Rajput origin) Bhatnagar and Chandan Katar, and of these the Bhatnagar again suggests Kayasth affinities. The caste is endogamous, and four gots are avoided in marriage, but widow marriage is said to be only allowed in Bawal. Jats, Gujars and Ahirs take water from a Bharbhunja's hands, but Bdnias, Khatris and Brahmans will only take fresh water brought by him, not from one of his vessels. The gurus of the Bharbhunjas are always Brahmans and perform the phera. Their women wear no nose-ring, its use having been prohibited by a sati in each group. The Bharbhunjas of Bawal affect the cult of Bhairon, to whom the Mallahs of Agra used to marry their daughters. Tradition says that the god once saved a boat from sinking and thenceforward the family married one of their girls to the god and left her at his shrine where she survived for less than a year. But now only a doll of dough is formally married to the god. Other Bharbhunjas also reverence Bhairon, and their guru is Subhān Sahib, whose shrine is in a town to the east. He is worshipped on the bhai duj day in Katik. The Bbarbhunjas of Phul and Amloh have a peculiar form of betrothal contract. The bride's father goes to the bridegroom's and gives him 4 Mansuri pice, and the latter gives him twice as much in

Bharech — Bhargava Dhusar

return. This is called paisa hatādna or exchange of presents, and the contract is then said to be irrevocable. If any one violates it without reasonable cause he is excommunicated by the chaudhris, but may be re-admitted on payment of a fine which is spent for the benefit of the brotherhood. All the Bharbhunjas, except those of Bawal, wear the janeo. If a traveller or a wedding party of Bharbhunjas halts in any village the Bharbhunjas there are bound to entertain the whole party, otherwise they are excommunicated.*

The Bharbhunja in Delhi claim to be Jaiswal Rajputs, and have three gots, Jaiswal (the highest), Kherwa and Tajupuria, which all intermarry and smoke and eat togetheir. Each village has a chaudhri and of two chaudhris one is called chaukṛāt. The chaudhri can only act with the advice of panchayat. Each chaukrat has what is called the 'half pagri' and each chaudhri the 'full pagri' The chaudhri has jurisdiction over petty disputes within the caste. Fines ranging from Re. 1 to Rs. 100 are levied and the smaller sums spent on feast, while larger fines are expended on such public objects as guest-houses. Each chaudhri and chaukrat gets double bhaji at weddings.

  • Bharech (भरेच), (Barech (बरेच) more correctly), one of the branches of the Pathans. From it was descended the family of the Nawabs of Jhajjar which was called Bahadurwati after the name of Bahadur Khan, one of its members. The State of Bahadargarh (Dadri) also belonged to this family.
  • Bharera (भरेड़ा), a term said to mean silver-smith, in the Simla Hills. The Bhareras intermarry with the Lohars.
Bhargava pedigree

Bhargava Dhusar

  • Bhargava Dhusar (भार्गव धूसर), Dhunsar (धूंसर), a sub-division of the Gaur Brahmans, now mainly employed in trade or as clerks. They give themselves the following pedigree starting from
  • BrahmaBhriguChiman
  • Chiman→ Pramata → Ruru → Sonak:
  • Chiman → Aurab → Rachik → Jamdagnya → Parasurama

All the descendants of Bhrigu and Chiman were called Chimanbansi

Bhargavas, and as Chiman the rishi used to perform his devotions at the hill of Arahak, near Rewari in Gurgaon, which is now called Dhosi, those of his descendants who settled in that locality became known as Dhusars. Chiman rishi has an ancient temple on this hill and a new one was built in recent years. Adjoining these temples is a tank, the Chandrakup. The Dhusars have the following seven groups or gotras : —

:* Popular legend distorts this descent in a curious way. It says that once Chaman, a Brahman of Narnaul, took as his mistress a woman of menial caste, who bore him 7 sons and as many daughters. When asked to marry them he bade them appear on an amavas with a cow and made each touch its different parts : so one touched its tail (puchal) and formed the Puchalar gotra ; another its horns (sing) and founded the Singlas gotra, and soon. Each gotra has five parvaras, except the Kashib which has three or occasionally seven. The Kashibs are thus known as triparwaras or saptparwaras and the other gotras as panchpanvaras.

Bhargava Dhusar history
Bhargava Dhusar history
Bharhi — Bhatia
  • Bharhi (भरही) a tribe which claims descent from Gaur Brahmans, and observes the same ceremonies as they do, but at a wedding performs seven pheras instead of four. Work as sculptors, etc. (Found in Gurgon).
  • Bharoi (भरोई), fem. Bharoia (भरोइया), s. m. one who attends travellers at a bharo.
  • Bharth (भर्थ), a Rajput sept found in Gujrat, descended from their eponym.
  • Bhati (भाती), a Jat, Arain, Gujar and Rajput clan (agricultural) found in Amritsar, also a Jat and Rajput clan found in Multan.
Bhāti tribe
  • Bhati (बहाती), a tribe of Hindu Rajputs, chiefly interesting as being the ancestors of the Bhatti Rajputs and the Sidhu Barar Jats, as the following table shows : —
[Fagan—Hissar Gazetteer, pp. 124, 127—129.]
  • Bhatia (भाटिया). — A caste originally from the country round Delhi but more recently from Bhatner and the Rajasthan desert, and claiming to be Rajputs of Yadubansi race, one branch of which became rulers of Jaisalmer while the other took to commercial pursuits. The name would seem to show that they were Bhatis (Bhatti in the Punjab) ; but be that as it may, their Rajput origin seems to be unquestioned. They are numerous in Sind and Guzerat where they appear to form the leading mercantile element, and to hold the place which the Aroras occupy higher up the Indus. They have spread into the Punjab along the lower valleys of the Indus and Sutlej, and up the whole length of the Chenab as high as its debouchure into the plains, being indeed most numerous in Sialkot and Gujrat. In these Provinces however they occupy an inferior position, both in a social and in a mercantile sense. They stand distinctly below the Khatri and perhaps below the Arora, and are for the most part engaged in petty shop-keeping, though the Bhatias of Dera Ismail Khan are described as belonging to a 'widely spread and enterprising mercantile community.' They are often supposed to be Khatris, are very strict Hindus — far more so than the other trading classes of the Western Punjab-eschewing meat and liquor. They do not practise widow-marriage.
The Bhatia sections

The Bhatia caste has 84* sections, called mukhs, divided into two groups thus —

Group I. — Bari- Sections (with Status).

1. Babla (Dhaighar)/(Charghar)
2. Dhagga (Dhaighar)/(Charghar)
3. Anda (Dhaighar)/(Charghar)
4. Balha (Charghar)
5. Jawa (Charghar)
6. Soni.
7. Gandhi.
8. Chachra.
9. Chabak.
10. Kandal.
11. Ghanghal.
12. Kore.

Both Balaha and Jawa claim to be charghar. All the above sections are of Baraghar status. It is hardly necessary to explain that dhaighar may not give daughters to any but dhaighar, though they may take from charghar and so on. A breach of this rule involves degradation and hence the same section may be both dhaighar and charghar.

Group II.Bunjahi, which comprises the remaining sections such as Baila, Chotak, Dholia and Naida.

There are no territorial groups, but the orthodox idea among the old men is that daughters should be given to the Western Bhatias of Shahpur, Jhelum and Dera Ismail Khan as they are of superior status to those in Gujrat, while the Eastern Bhatias of Sialkot and Gujranwdla are considered inferior and wives are taken from them.

It should, however, be noted that in Bahawalpur these groups appear to be unknown, but of these sections given above the Sijwala is the highest and the Rilla the lowest.

The Bhatias have a proverb dhan di wadi ai or ' wealth is greatness.' In Bahawalpur, they live in large rectangular hawelis, each comprising 30 or 40 houses.

  • 1. Rai Gjaria, from
  • 3. Rao Sapat, from Sapata, a village of Marwar, the home of Bima, a Bhatt. The Bhatis of Sapta, were great devotees of Devi and as such held in great respect.
  • 4. Rao Paral-sauria, 'the sept of the five heroes,' Jasaji, Rawalji, Nawal Singh, Jodhraj and Bir Singh who fell bravely fighting in Jaisalmer. Bahadar Singh belonged to this nakh. —All the above nakhs affect Devi.
  • 5. Rai Ramaya. Agai-raj, brother of Ram Chandar was a great bhagat who was ever repeating Ram's name.
  • 6. Rai Padamsi, from Padamsi Bhati who fell bravely fighting in battle. He had a a son Udhe Rai.
  • 7. Rai Paleja, from Paleja a village, the home of Parma Bhati, in Marwar.
  • 8. Rai Ved (Waid), from Man Singh, son of Megh Raj Bhati who was skilled in waidak (physic) : all the Bhatis who joined him became Rai by sept.
  • 9. Rai Surya, from Sura Bhati who fell in battle.
  • 10. Rai Ditya, from Duta a village, the home of Arjan Bhati, a bhagnt of Devi.
  • 11. Rai Gokal Gandi, from Gokal Gindi of Multan under whom served Nawal, son of Rawal Bhati. Rawal fell in battle,
  • 12. Rai Gada, from Gada Bhati, a bhagat of Hanuman.
  • 13. Rai Nae Gandi, from Megh Raj, son of Jodh Raj. Megh Raj opened a shop at Bahawalpur, and was known as Niya Gandi.

* An 85th is also named below.
There is also a lower group called Gand, the offspring of Bhitias married to Arora women or of widow remarriages. The Pushkarna Brahman is their puarohit.

The Bhatia sections
  • 14. Rai Midia, from Medi a village, the home of Kumbha Bhati, who fell in battle. He had a son Oga, who was a servant of Bahadar Ali, Nawab.
  • 15. Rai Chhachia, from chhe (six). Six families joined Desa Bhati.
  • 16. Rai Bablla, from Bablla, son of Jodha Bhati, of Nigu village.
  • 17. Rai Panchal, from Panchalpuri, the home of Rai Bhim.
  • 18. Rai Gulgula, from Gulgula Bhiti who was killed in battle. He had a son Man Singh.
  • 19. Rai Subra, from Subra, the name of a baithak* of Bhatis.
  • 20. Rai Nagra, from Nagra, a village in Marwar.
  • 21. Rai Saraki, from Nawal Saraki, the name of those who sided with Nawal Singh in a dispute about some custom which the Qazi decided in his favour.
  • 22. Rai Soni, from Son a village, whose spokesman was Ratan Rai Bhati.
  • 23. Rai Sopla, from Bhopat Singh Bhati.
  • 24. Rai Jia, from Jia Bhati who displayed great courage in the army.
  • 25. Rai Mogia, from Mogia Bhati who fell fighting
  • 26. Rai Dhadha, from Dhadhalu, a village of the Thati country.
  • 27. Rai Rika, from Rika Bhati, who fell fighting. He had a son Gassa.
  • 28. Rai Jidhan, from Jidhan Bhati, who was a great cultivator.
  • 29. Rai Kothia, from Kothiar, a village.
  • 30. Rai Kotha, from Kothapur, a village.
  • 31. Rai Dhawan, from Dhawan Rai, who was famed for his generosity. He had a son Megha.
  • 32. Rai Devla, from a famous Deval Bhati, who lived in the village of Ganth.
  • 33. Rai Jia, from Jia Chadak, a cultivator, who lived in the Marwar Thati.
  • 34. Rai Baura, from Baura, a village in the Thati.
  • 35. Rai Dhage, from Dhaga Bhati, who fell bravely in battle.
  • 36. Rai Kandhya, from Shuja Bhati, who though his forehead was split in the Jaisalmer war, yet his trunk fought on for a long while.
  • 37. Rai Rathia, from Rathia Bhati, of Ratnar, a village in the Thati of Marwar, He was famous for his hospitality.
  • 38. Rai Kajria,, from Kajarya, a village towards Multan where Man Singh mukhia lived. He had seven sons, all called mukhias.
  • 39. Rai Sijwala, who were proficient in archery.
  • 40. Rai JabaU, from Jabala, a village in Sindh.
  • 41. Rai Malan, from Malan, a family of Gogla village, whose members knew antidotes to poisons.
  • 42. Rai Dhaba, from Dhaba mukhia of Rori village, who raised camels there.
  • 43. Rai Uhiran, from Dhiran Bhati, who fell in battle. He had a son Udhe Rai.
  • 44 Rai Bhagta, from Bhagtanand Bhati, who showed great valour in the Jaisalmer war.
  • 45. Rai Bira, from Bira Bhati, who showed great valour in battle. He was a bhagat of Devi.
  • 46. Rai Thula, from Thula, a village of the Thati.
  • 47. Rai Sodhaya, from Sodha, a caste, Singh Mal Bhati having married the daughter of a Sodhi Rajput.
  • 48. Rai Bura, from Bura Bhati of Bakhar village.
  • 49. Rai Miichha, from Arjan Bhati, who was nicknamed Arjan Muchha, as he had long moustaches. He was a bhagat of Jasra Devi, and wore the 5 kes.
  • 50. Rai Tamboli, from Nanda and Niga, tambolis (betel nut-sellers). They were bhagats of Shiva.
  • 51. Rai Thakar.
  • 52. Rai Bisnaw, from Bisanwant Bhati, who was a man of great good furtune. He had 4 sons. All the members of this family specially worshipped Ram Chandr and in one year 107 sons used to be born to it.
  • 53. Rai Bhudria, from Bhudar, a Bhati.
  • 54. Rai Indhar, from Indhar, a branch of the Bhatis.
  • 55. Rai Dhadhal, from Dhadhala village, the home of Rama Bhati.
  • 56. Rai Beg Chandr, from Bega and Chanda, Bhatis, who were customs collectors.
  • 57. Rai Bipal, from Bipal, the residence of Kunbha and Kana, Bhatis.
  • 58. Rai Potha, from the brothers Potha, Parma and Naga, Bhatis.
  • 59. Rai Premla, from Prema and Parma, Bhati Rajputs of Rasa village.
  • 60. Rai Purdhaga, from Puradh, a yag, performed by Kana and Kumbha, Bhatis, who were followers of Guru Nanak.
  • 61. Rai Madhra, from Madhra Bhati, a servant of a Khan at Multan, who gave much in alms.
  • 62. Rai Pharas Gandi, from Pharas, the name of Jita Mal, Bhati, who had transactions with Maujud Khan in Multan. He had perfumes, oil and attar.
  • 63. Rai Puri Gandi, from Pare, a Bhati, performer of Raipul.
  • 64 Rai Jujar Gandi from Jujar village, the residence of Ajit Singh and Ranpha, Bhatis, who sold perfumes.
  • 65. Rai Panwar, from Panwar, a branch of the Bhati.
  • 66. Rai Prema Suj, from Prema and Suja, the sons of Gondha, Bhati.
  • 67. Rai Raja, from Raja, a village in Marwar.

* A room or building where male visitors are received.
Not apparently the Nawal Singh of No. 11. This Nawal Singh was in the employ of one Qutb Khan.

Bhatia - Bhāṭrā
  • 68. Rai Parjia, from Parja, a caste. Rasan, son of Bhim Singh, Bhati, in a fight with robbers killed 100 of them, while on his side only two of his 5 sons and 6 Bhatis fell.
  • 69. Rai Kupwar, from Kapura, a, Bhati, who attained a great age.
  • 70. Rai Dhadar, from Dhadar, a village in the Punjab.
  • 71. Rai Kartarya, from Kartarya, the family name of one Kana Bhati.
  • 72. Rai Gogla.
  • 73. Rai Kukar, from Kukar, a village in the Punjab.
  • 74. Rai Multani, from Multan where Jodu Rai, a Bhati clothier and his family lived.
  • 75. Rai Chamuja, from Chamuja, a village.
  • 76. Rai Dhiya, from Dhiya, a village.
  • 77. Rai Karan Gota, from Karna, Bhati, who was called Karna after his gotar. Two of them, Mul Raj and Megh Raj, served with distinction under the Nawab of Bahawalpur.
  • 78. Rai Nisat, from sat (juice) because Samun and Hamun extracted juice from wheat and made halwa of it.
  • 79. Rai Udesi, from Udhe Rai, the elder son of Parma Bhati. He had a bitter feud with his younger brother.
  • 80. Rai Budhiya, Bhoj Raj, Bhati, did Badh Pal's work, had camels and hired them.
  • 81. Rai Balai, from Balayakar, a village in the Punjab which was the home of Bhan, son of Bhoj Raj.
  • 82. Rai Pawar, from Pawri village, the home of Preman and Parman.
  • 83. Rai Kina, from Kina (enmity). The family of Musa estroyed their enemy.
  • 84. Rai Kazia, from Kazi. Ir Mal, Bhati, who worked as a clerk under a kazi of Bahawalpur.
  • 85. Rai Mota, from Moti, daughter of Naru Mal Sohana, a resident of Multan.

  • Bhati-Dar (भाटी-दार), one on whom land is bestowed as bhati, i.e., a rent-free grant of land given to a Brahman or jagir by a ruler.
  • Bhati Wad (भाटीवाड़), a tribe of Jats found in Sialkot which claims Solar Rajput descent and originated in Ajudhia whence its eponym migrated to Amritsar, where it is also found as a Jat (agricultural) clan.
  • Bhatra (भाटड़ा) — Like the Maniar, Banjara and others the Bhatra, is a pedlar. He claims Brahman origin, and his traditions say that one Madho Mal, a Brahman rishi, a singer and a poet, once loved and wedded Kām Kundala, a dancing gir1. From this pair are descended the Madhwas or Bhatras.* The latter word appears to be a diminutive of the Sanskrit bhaṭṭa, a bard. However this may be, a curious legend accounts for the Bhatras' location in the Punjab and their conversion to Sikhism. Madho was born and died in Ceylon, but in the reign of Babar, Guru Nnnak visited that island, and there made a disciple of Changa Bhatra, a descendant of Madho. The Adi Granth records that 20 maunds of salt a day were required for Changa's numerous followers, many of whom were converted to Sikhism and followed Guru Nanak back to India.
The Madhwas, however, did not at first settle in the Punjab. Originally they were to be found chiefly in the Dadra Des, along the banks of the Ganges in the Bijnor District of the United Provinces, where many of them are hanjaras or pedlars by trade, some hawking cheap ornaments for women, others so-called Vedic medicines.†† Thence they migrated into Hoshiarpur and Sialkot, but

* This tradition is said to be preserved in the Mahabharata and Singhasan Batisi. In a parvana of Maharaja Ranjit Singh (Punjab) of 7th Asauj, 1866 Sambat, and now in the possession of a Bhatra of Dhariwal, the Madhwas were exempted from the grazing tax.
A Sikh temple, known as Dera Baba, was built in Ceylon to the Guru's memory at the Madhwas' original home.
†† Gullible patients are made to sign bonds for Ra. 50 or so, as the Bhitra's fees if they recover.

The Bhat or Bhatt

they are now to be found in the great towns and places of pilgrimage all over India. In Hoshiarpur the Bhatras are virtually all Sikhs (though children under 12 have their heads shaved) and here they pose as magicians, foretelling the future by gazing into a cup of oil. Thence they mainly frequent the Kangra District. In Sialkot a moiety are true Sikhs, observing all the Sikh customs, and often posing as gurus, Akalis or Nihangs when on their wanderings.* They prey on the credulity of the people by astrology. The other moiety are jatadharis, but smoke, and generally assume the characteristic garb of the Udasis, pretending to be emissaries of certain temples and collecting subscriptions for them. After the Diwali the Bhatras set out on their tours, returning at the commencement of the rainy season. They travel in gangs generally of half-a-dozen or so, and the Sikhs are occasionally accompanied by their wives and daughters, for whose marriages they collect subscriptions. Various forms of swindling are practised by them and they earn large sums which they promptly squander on drink and gambling. Besides hawking small hardware for sale they pierce children's noses and ears for rings, like the Ramdiya of the eastern districts.

The Bhatras' claim to Brahmanical origin is borne out by the fact that they wear the janeo and tilak, and even at eclipses receive certain offerings, while standing in water, from each and every caste. They also practise palmistry (rekha). Other castes call them hararpopo or Thags, and the higher Brahman groups disown them. Probably they are a branch of the Dakauts.

The Bhatras have 22 gots, of which 13 are found in Sialkot, viz. ;—


  • Bhatt (भट्ट), fem. Bhatten (भट्टेन), Bhattni (भट्टनी), Bhatni (भटनी), Bhatani (भटानी) : dim. Bhateta (भटेता) : fem. Bhateti (भटेटी), the son or daughter of a Bhatt : also, contemptuously, any one of that caste. The Panjabi form is Bhatt, but it is very commonly pronounced Bhat (भाट), especially in the Hills.
The organisation of the Hindu Bhats almost baffles description, so fluid are its intricacies.
In Hissar are found two sub-castes, Brahm and a few Raj. The former are clients of the Mahajans††, performing certain functions for them at weddings, &c.§ ; they wear the janeo, avoid widow marriage, and only eat food cooked by a Gaur Brahman, while the Raj are land-holders and cultivators, receiving dues at Jat weddings.
The Brahm, Brahma or Brahmi Bhats are very widely spread, and

always appear to stand higher than the other sub-castes or groups, which vary from place to place. Thus in Rohtak the other groups are

* Recently, however, some of them have taken to disguising themselves as Bairagi sadhus. Others, of Daska, make an indelible mark on their necks and call themselves Hosaini Brahmans, collecting alms from Muhammadans.
See p. 268 of Punjab Manufactures for the implements used.
†† And also of the Brahmans in Rohtak.
§ They sing kabits in public when the bridegroom first sets out for his father-in-law's house, receiving a rupee as then* fee on this occasion and also at the kāj of an old man.
Or Aggarwal Mahajans in Robtak.

The Bhāṭt groups

three in number, viz., Japgga or Tappawār,* Chāran, and a fourth class, to which belonged Udā, Bhāt.†† The Jaggās comprise the Bharia, Roria, Shakkarwala, Solanki and other gots.

In Gurgaon on the other hand the Bhāt or Rai, as he is called, is described as a Mirāsi, and is divided into four classes§ ; —

I: 1. Brahm Rai, Bhāts of the Brahmans. 2. Bero (Baro) Rai, of the Rajputs.

II:3. Rāj Rai, who eat flesh and drink liquor. 4. Jagā, or genealogists : of whom I is superior to II.

The Brahm group then extends right across the south of the Punjab into Multan, Dera Ghazi Khan, Dera Ismail Khan, Mianwali and even Bannu; the group below them being called Kātimār.

On the other hand in Multan the Brahm Bhāts are said to be divided into four classes : —

1. Chandi Dds.
2. Jangā Bhambā.
3. Mahal.
4. Sutrak.

This group is also called Vateshar and regards itself as Bahri or superior, while the Bunjāhis, who are not recognised as Brahm Bhāts comprise the following gots : —

The real grouping in Multan however appears to be into four functional groups, viz. : —

1. Brahm, eulogists and genealogists.
2. Vartishar, who live upon dues payable at weddings and funerals for their services. At weddings they summon the brotherhood, and so on. At deaths they notify its members, and also procure certain

* Jaggi, so called because they rise early and seated on their patron's roof recite his genealogy. Tappawar is not explained.
Charan, a wanderer, pilgrim : singer, dancer : Platts, sub voce.
†† But another account says the Bhats include the following classes -—Brahm (the onlv one found in Rohtak), Jagga, Raj and Charan, (already mentioned n together with the Monii and Garara.
§ Apparently sub-castes : if not, I and II each form a sub-caste. But it is also said that the mirasi of the Rajputs are called Rana or Ucharn Bhats, the Ranas being story tellers and eulogists, as well as genealogists. And yet another account divides the Bhats into four classes :— (1) Rai Bhat, or 'meistersingers.' (2) Ranas "heralds " who used to act as envoys as well as encourage the fighting men by their singing of legends, (3) Kathaks or' musicians' and (4) Jaggas or genealogists and story tellers. The following kubit from Gurgaon describes the superiority of the Rai Bhits -
Hamin That, Hamin Bhatt, Hamin Bhaunra, Hamin Bhagi,
Hamin bir Betal, Hamin jangal ke jogi.
Kapra pharen mang karar bandh mandar aren,
Betal kahen Bikram suno dev dan kirat karen.
The Bhat gos are:-Bimblan, Bhardwaj, Chand Bardai, Chandian, Kalia, Mirchal, Sair, Tind and Sodhian.
But according to an account from Multan the groups are four viz -—Brahm, Varteshwar, Chandisar and Kutichar, each with functions of its own.
** These two gots are by some classed as Brahm, in other words some of their mrmbers are of Brahm status, others only of Bunjahi rank.

The Bhat groups

articles for the corpse. At funerals their females take part in the siājpā (mourning), being paid annas 2 per day. At a girl's wedding they get Ke. 1-8, but at a boy's only Re. 1, the sum which they also get at a funeral. Their perquisite on other occasions is called vel badhāi.

3. The Chandisar live in the villages and live by begging. The Kātimārs who used to be numerous in Multan, are an off-shoot of this branch.

4. The Kutichar are vagrant beggars.

Accounts from Mianwali, in which District the Bhāts are very few in number, give a threefold division of the caste, as follows :—

I...i. Brahmi. ii. Khosla.

II...iii. Baddu. iv. Katimar or Sheni Khel.

I performs ceremonies : II does not, though at weddings the Katimar sing songs of congratulation. The Baddu in virtually an out-caste.*

A second account points to the fact that the Bhqts derive their origin from the Pushkarna, Brahmans as well as from the Sarsut, and says the Pushkarnā Bhāt are equal in status to the Sārsut. though the status of the sections varies, and a family whose widows marry outside the brotherhood is looked down upon.

Lastly a third account gives the old functional groups : the Sut who sing songs and recite chronicles ' in the afternoon '†† ; the Māgadh, who keep pedigrees of kings, and recount their deeds : the Windijān, who teach princes ; and the Bhāt or Jagak§ who sang songs in the early morning hours to awaken the king. Yet this same account divides the Bhāts into Brahms and Kdātimārs.

In Multan, tahsil Shujabad, only the Brahm and Kātimār groups are known. The former comprises 7 gots : Chandi Dās, Mahel, Sutrak, Changar, Palsa, Chandaria, and Channan, all of which are said to be Sārsut gots and intermarry. The Kātimārs, also said to be Sārsuts, form a distinct sub-caste. They have, as a rule, no clients, and live by blackmail, but in Shujābād itself they receive fixed dues (from one to four annas a head at weddings). They still compose kabits which the Brahm Bhāts do not.

In the accounts from Karnal, Patiala and Kapurthala allusion is

* The Baddu takes alms from Muhammadans, which other Bhats will not do. No other will eat with him, yet he wears the janeo. His corpse is not burnt like a Hindu's, but is cast into a stream. It is to be regretted that no further particulars of this interesting group are given.

it is said that the gots are : —

Sarsut - Chandi Das, Gandhor, Harar Rai, Hatiara, Katimar, Thor

Pushkarna - Panian, Josi, Asur, Ghangar

†† Just as the Jaggi have a stated time for their recitations : see above.
§ Not to be confused with the Jajik, who in Dera Ghazi Khan is a sewer of shrouds : see infra.
In Kapurthala to the Sut is assigned the duty of reciting verses from the Purans : and to the Magadh that of eulogising the Surajbans, Chandrbans, etc., while to the Vandijan is allotted the recitation of chronicles, and eulogising Deo, rikhi, pitar and Hai ki nandan, whence they are designated Kabishars or bards. The latter also announce betrothals, set forth the dowry at weddings, and so on.


The Bhat groups made to an older and apparently extinct organisation of the Bhat caste into three main groups, viz. : —

1. Sut, reciters of myths.

2. Magadhs, chroniclers.

3. Vandis, or Vandijan, who acted as advisers to Rajas and as poets laureate.

The Vandis alone are found in Patiala, where they are known as Brahma Bhats or Brahmsi Rais. They wear the janeo and retain their Brahminical gotras such as Konsal (in Kapurthald), Bhardwaj, etc.

In their internal grouping the Brahm Bhats imitate the Khatri organisation, having two groups as follows : —

I. — Bari, or the 12 gots.

1. Gundeo.
2. Kataria.
3. Pangan.
4. Lakhan Sain.
5. Dhur.
6. Bisbel or -wel.
7. Bharamal.
8. Tahu.
9. Kalian.
10. Phag.
11. Chandidas.
12. Dhiran.

and of these numbers 1 — 6 form a dhaighar group, which avoids only one got in marriage, (as indeed does the whole Bari group, apparently) whereas the Bunjahis avoid four. This latter group includes the following gots : —

On the other hand in Shahpur the Bhat are divided into Bunjahis and Khokhars, the latter suggesting the Khokharain group of the Khatris, thus : —

I.— Bunjahis.

Section (gotra)

Ayupotri (Bhardwaj)
Dherru (Bhardwaj)
Jandidas (Koshal)
Mahal (Koshal)
Rai Pal (Koshal)

II. — Khokhars.

Sigarre (Kushab)
Nadhipotre (Bhardwaj)
Apat (Balash)
Jain (Vashist)

Of these the Jain section will intermarry with any other, but from the above notes it is abundantly clear that the Bhats are simply an offshoot of the Brahmans, being differentiated from them by function. And to explain their origin various legends have been invented. One is that when -Janmejaya celebrated a sacrifice he summoned the Gaur Brahmans and tricked one of them into accepting an offering of a diamond by concealing it in some pan. This Brahman became a Bhat. Another, to whom Janmeja offered a gift, refused it and became a Tagga. Another is that Shiva was celebrating the marriage of his son, and giving alms to Jogis, Jangams, Saniasis and Suthras, who received them with a good grace. Thereupon the god asked if any would constrain him to give alms, and a drop of sweat falling from his brows to the ground the first Bhat sprang from

Bhat legends

it, with a Katar in his hands, and uttered a kabit which runs : — "O goddess Kalika., give the Bhat a Katar whose sight will cause a closefisted man (shum) to flee. Let the Bhat cleave him from head to foot with his Katar" Shiva replied : — "0 Betal Rai, Bhat, I would have given you the kingdom of the whole world had you not appeared thus. Now I grant you great influence and all will be terrified at your voice, but you will get what you may". This kabit, obtained from a Bhat, would make all the Bhats professional extortioners. A third tradition is that Brahma offered gifts to Brahmans, but they all refused it, until one of their sisters' sons accepted it and thus became a Bhat.

Two legends from the Simla hills also describe the origin of the Bhats. The first explains how they acquired the power of reading men's thoughts. Under Raja Bhoj,* it says, lived Kali Das, a famous Bhat who held that a man could say anything he wished in poetry, and so Kali, the goddess, pleased with his devotion, conferred on him the power of thought-reading. The other legend goes further back, and describes how Raja Jaswant had a wise counsellor in a woman Khankāli. Once when he was holding his court at Srinagar in Garhwal the Raja of Marwar, Jagdeo, came to see him and found him and Khankāli in council. The lady veiled her face, explaining that as a man had come to that cowardly court she could not show her face before him. This reply naturally annoyed Jaswant who declared he would give her 10 times as much as Jagdeo would bestow. Khankāli then went to Jagdeo's tent ; but as he was at his devotions his Rani gave her a dish full of gold coins and gems which Khankali refused to accept, as she could take no alms from a woman. When the Raja came she presented him with a rupee, as a nazr, and said she was the wife of a Bhat and had come to demand dan (charity), which one of Rajput blood could not refuse. He bade her ask a favour, and she demanded his head, which the Raja at once cut off, and she carried it in a dish to Raja Jaswant. Tauntingly Jaswant asked what she had got from Jagdeo, who had fled from his own kingdom and sought a refuge with himself. In reply Khankāli showed him the head and demanded those of himself and his 9 sons in fulfillment of his vow, threatening him with the ruin of his kingdom if he refused. The king's sons, his queen, and he himself, however, all declined to sacrifice their lives in fulfilment of the Rajd's rash promise.

Khankali then returned to Jagdeo's tent. She had forbidden his queen to burn his body till she returned, and when she found the Rani lamenting over his corpse she restored it to life and promised him the empire of all India. This he soon achieved. In the first encounter Jaswant was overthrown and Jagdeo seized his kingdom. Gradually he subdued all the petty chiefs in India, compelling them to pay 6 annas in the rupee as tribute. From Khankali and Kali Das the Bhat chain descends.

In Sirmur the Bhats are by origin Brahmans,†† but having adopted karewa they lost status and are now by occupation genealogists. Many, too, are cultivators and trans-Giri mairy with Kanets. The

* Cf. Legends II, p. 183.
See Legends of the Punjab III, pp. 242, 252.
†† There is a Wateshar or Bateshar group among the Brahmans also.

The Muhammadan Bhats

Bhats of Nahan retain Brahman customs, but those of the interior have adopted those of the Kanets. With the Kanets the Bhats furnish the Dewas or priests to the temples. Trans-Giri there is a sub-division of the Bhats called Deti, but the rest of the Bhats do not intermarry with them and they are inferior to the other groups.

The Muhammadan Bhats.

The Muhammadan Bhats are even fewer in numbers than the Hindu, and far less elaborately organised. In Hissar they date their conversion to Alamgir's reign, and still continue to minister to Mahajans and other Hindus as well as to Mughals and Pirzadas, but Shaikhs only fee them at a daughter's wedding; as do also oilmen and weavers who give them 8 annas. But they get fees on the birth of a son. In Rohtak they have only three sections, Bijhan. Sil Saha and Gur Deva, of whom the latter recite genealogies and compose songs.

Their patrons are Muhammadan Rajputs and Hindu Mahajans, and they receive —

Ceremony. Function. Fee.
Girl's betrothal The Bhat women sing songs and chant kahbits. 8 Mansuri takas.
Boy's betrothal The Bhat women sing songs and also the brotherhood Re. 1 or as. 8 with takas.
Girl's betrothal Women sing bandhawa 8 takas for each.
Birth of a son Sing congratulatory songs Re. 1.

At weddings when the dower arrives the Bhats read out the list of articles and recite the following kabit : —

Zar kisi sone gota kinari murassa moti kanchan chhahbhari hai,
Kimkhāb atlas bātvalā jhurm lāt mehndi moti sut pās dhari hai.
Bhukan rātub hirā pannā jarāo jurat gird men chhuhāre sab ndr kahin khari hai.
Sundar sohāg bhāg bhari jaisi khilli phul jhari hai.

In Shahpur the Muhammadan Bhats are divided thus :—

Section (Gotra).

  • I - Chural (Koshal), Panj (Koshal), Samit, Gudral.
  • II- Kapral, which is said to be purely endogamous and not to marry with any other Bhat under pain of excommunication, other four sections marry inter se.
The Bhat's functions.

The functions of the Bhat differ in different parts of these Provinces. In the south-eastern districts he is not entrusted with any religious functions at all. Thus in Rohtak the Brahm Bhats merely get annas 4 to 8 on the bridegroom's departure at a wedding ; and the guests at a rich man's funeral are invited through a Bhats, who receives Re.1 in cash, and a turban when the pagri is tied round the heir's head. A Bhat also summons the kinsmen to witness an excommuni-

The Bhat's functions

cation or a re-admission into caste.* As we go westward, however, the Bhat's functions become more definite, assuming at times almost a priestly colour, while his perquisites are correspondingly larger and more certain. Thus in Kapurthala the Brahm Bhat sings congratulatory songs at a betrothal, at the saia chitthi, at a chhota tika, or marking of the bridegroom's forehead, the milni, or meeting of the bride and bridegroom, at the lawān or turins, the mittha bhat and the chirkani, receiving a fee of annas 2 or so, together with other rails.

After a death the Bhat remains for 13 days in the deceased's house and helps to procure what is required ; at a shānt he gets a rupee ; and at a such he gets a similar fee with certain clothes : —


In the western districts the Bhatni fulfils the duties of a professional mourner. Thus in Shahpur she leads the mourning by the women of the deceased's brotherhood for a fee of Re. 1, and in Dera Ghazi Khan she does this for a wage of 2 annas a day, besides what the relatives may give her.

In Kangra§ the only relic of the Bhat's former functions is the making of kahits, and a proverb runs : — Bhat hi bhet kabit, i.e., a Bhat will always make a present of a kabit. Like the purohit and the barber

* This account comes from the Sampla tahsi of Rohtak. Elsewhere the Bhats merely sing congratulatory songs on auspicious occasions for a fee of four double-pice, raised at weddings to Re. 1-4-0.
They sprinkle the red coloured water on the white garments of the wedding guests.
†† But in Dera Ghazi Khan this is done by the Jajik.
§ This is the account from Hamirpur. In Nurpur tahsil Bhats merely visit the house of a newly married couple and receive a small fee, earning their living by cultivation. In Kangra tahsil they sometimes at a wedding get a fee called durbhia, which varies from 3 pies to 2 annas : they also get one at an investiture with the janeo, and at weddings the girl's father gives his Bhat annas 2 and some cloth, while the boy's Bhat gets Re. 1-4.0, but they perform no rites.

Being Improved
Bhattahār — Bhatti

they are looked npon as lāgis, but are virtually only employed as messengers at weddings, being paid a trifle by the recipient for the message (neondar). In the Hill States, however, ten or twenty Bhats sometimes collect and recite kabits, receiving a sum of money, called rinj, which is divided proportionately among them, the Bhat; of the raja, who gives it getting the lion's share. In former times, it is said, they were compelled to work, but this is not now the case. Elsewhere the Bhat is now, speaking generally, a cultivator or a servant to a Mahajan.

The Bhats act as purohits to the Khatris, while their own parohits and padhas are Sarsut Brahmans.

  • Bhattahar (भट्टहार),Bhattahara (भट्टहारा), fem.-hari, Bhattiar (भट्टीयार),-ārā, a person who takes food to labourers in the field.


  • Bhatti (भट्टी). The name Bhatti would appear to be unquestionably connected with Bhat, Bhatt, Bhati and Bhatiti, Bhatt bearing the same relation to Bhat as Jatt to Jat, kamm in Punjabi to kācim, etc. As a tribe the Bhattis are of some antiquity, numerous and wide-spread. They give their name to the Bhattiana* and to the Bhattiora tracts, as well as to various places, such as Bhatinda, Bhatner, Pindi Bhattian and possibly the Bhattiāṭ in Chamba. Historically the Bhattis first appear to be mentioned in the Tārikh-i-Firoz-shāhi of Shams-i-Siraj Afif, and the following notes are culled from the translation of that work in Elliott's Sistory of India : —
In the reign of Ald-ud-Din, Tughlik of Khurasan obtained the district of Dipalpur, of which Abohar was a dependency. To Abohar were attached all the jungles belonging to the Maini (Mina ?) and Bhatti tribes. Tughlik, anxious to ally his family with the native chiefs, heard that the daughters of Rāna Mall Bhatti were beautiful and accomplished, so he sent the amaldār of Abohar to negotiate the alliance of one of them with his brother, Sipahsālar Rajab. In his pride the Rana rejected these overtures, and so Tughlik proceeded to levy the outstanding revenue from the talwandis of the Bhattis with great severity. The Rana's daughter, Bibi Nāila, hearing of this, urged her own surrender. ' Consider,' she said, ' that the Mughals have carried off one of your daughters.' She was accordingly married to Rajab, assumed the name of Bibi Kadbanu, and became the mother of Firoz Shah III in 1309 A.D.††
In 1394 Sārang Khan was sent to Dipalpur to suppress the rebellion of Shaikha Khokhar. There he raised troops and, taking with him Rai Khul Chain Bhatti and Rai Daud Kamal Main (? Mina), he crossed the Sutlej near Tirharah (Tihara, in Ludhiana).§
In 1389 we read of Rai Kamal-ud-din Main (? Mina) and Rai Khul Chand Bhatti whose fiefs lay near Samana, being sent with Prince Humayun to raise troops at that fortress.

* See the art. Bhattiana in the Imperial Gazetteer,
In the Chiniot uplands north of the Chenab.
†† E. H. I. III, pp. 271-2.
§ E. H. I. IV, p. 29.
E. H. I. IV, p. 22.

Bhatti clans

Timur found Bhatner under the rule of Rao Dul Chain,* a Rajput, and probably a Bhatti. Curiously enough he is represented as having a brother named Kamal-ud-din, and in one history Khul Chain is said to have been the Rai of Bhatner.

Again in 1527 we read of Mirza Kāmran' coming from Lahore, with many horses and much wealth taken from the Bhattis and Khokhars.††

The legends of the Bhattis are, however, silent on these events and ascribe the origin of the tribe to Achal through Barsi, who extended his dominions from the south to Bhatner, which they held until expelled from it by the Raja of Bikaner early in the 19th century. Then they spread over Bhattiana, which comprised the modern tahsil of Sirsa and the northern part of Fatehabad. The tribe is now found principally along the Ghaggar valley as far as Bhatner.

Various other traditions are, however, current in different localities and of these the most probable is that which connects the Bhattis with Jaisalmer. The story current in Hissar is that they were in very early times driven across the Indus, but returned and some 700 years ago dispossessed the Langah, Joiya and other tribes of the country to the south of the lower Sutlej, and founded Jaisalmer, which State they still hold. Bhatti, the leader under whom they recrossed the Indus, had two sons Dasal and Jaisal. The former settled in Bhattiana and from him are descended the Sidhu-Barar Jats, the Wattu being also descendants of his grandson, Rajput. With this tradition may be compared the following detailed account of the Bhattis of Bahawalpur, in which State they have 15 principal clans :—

  • i. The Bhattis, or pure Bhattis, who are generally landowners or cultivators, though some are weavers and blacksmiths.
  • ii. Pahor, found throughout the Lamma.
These five septs are closely connected, do not give daughters ont-side the group, and usually intermarry.
  • vii. Chakar-Hulle : a small sept, of recent origin called Chakar-ullah or servants of God.
  • X. Katesar : also a small sept, which rears sheep.
  • xi. Kulyar or Kawalyur which has an interesting history :— Kulyar was a son of Rana Raj Wadhan, who had four other sons, (1) Utterā, (2) Nun, (3) Kanjun, (4) Hatar. The tradition is that the

* The Zafarnama has Chan, probably for Chand : or Chain may be due to some confusion between Sain and Chand. Timur explains that Rao means 'brave.' (E. H. I. IV, pp. 422.5, 488-90.)
E. H. I. IV, p. 34.
†† E. H. I. V, p. 37.

Bhatti clans

ancestors of Raj Wadhan lived in ancient times near Ghajni, whence they migrated to Delhi, which after a time they left for Bhatner. In the 7th century of the Hijra Raj Wadhan together with his tribe left Bhatner and settled near Chhanb Kulyar (now in the Lodhran tahsil of Multan), which in those days lay on the southern bank of the Sutlej and formed part of the dominions of Rai Bhutta, the ruler of a city, the greater part of which was destroyed by the Sutlej flowing over it; ; but parts of its ruins are still to be seen on the right bank of the Ghāra (in tahsil Lodhran). Rana, Raj Wadhan had a beautiful daughter whom Rai Bhutta, desired to marry. The request was refused by Kulyar, the eldest son of Raj Wadhan ; and the result was that a sanguinary battle took place in which Rai Bhutta, was slain. The tract of the country thus conquered by the Kulyars became known as Chhanb Kulyilr, which name it still retains. At this time Sher Shah Sayyid Jalal was living in Uch, where Rana Raj Wadhan and his sons went to see him and embraced Islam. Raj Wadhan remained at Uch, Uttera, occupied the ' Viah ' (Bias)*, Nun began to live on the Ravi, (and that tribe is now dominant in Shujabad tahsil), Kanjun at the Donari Mari (?), and Kulyar made Chhanb Kulyar his residence. Hatar was deprived of his share of the inheritance.

  • xiii. Sangra, : with a famous sept called Wagi. In the 8th century Hijra the Sangras migrated from Rajasthan and settled in Kathala, then a large town on the Gurang or Hariari, the ruins of which are still to be seen near Tibba Tanwin-wala. Kathala was at that time held by the Joiyas.
  • xiv. Mahtam : the Muhammadan Mahtams claim to be Bhattis and say a mirasi once ironically called their ancestor 'Mahtam,' or chief. They appear to be distinct from the Hindu Mahtams.
  • XV. Bhet : who claim to have been Bhattis who accompanied Shaikh Hakim from Delhi, but are said by others to be Dhedhs or Menghwals, whom that saint converted.
  • xvi. Markand, Bokha, Jhakhkhar, Dhandla, Phanbi, Birar, Dadu, Kapahi (cotton-workers and reed-cutters), and Kahin, are nine clans descended from the same ancestor and they intermarry. Some are landowners, others tenants, but some are boatmen, and though Bhattis by origin they are regarded as of low status.
On the south-east border of the Punjab the subject population of Bikaner is largely composed of Bhattis, and tradition†† almost always

* The tradition is that in those days the Bias flowed separately to the north of Kahror towards Shujabad.
The Mittru Bhatti of Multan say they came from Bikaner.
†† The Hissar tradition is very different and says that the Battis are of the Jatu family, and that like the Tunwar Rajputs they trace their origin to remote antiquity. At some distant period, two persons named Bhatti and Sumija are said to have come to this country from Mathura. The latter had no male issue, and his descendants (called Joiya Rajputs) live in Sirsa. After some generations the of the family of the former, niinnd Rusalu, became Raja— he had two sens, Dusul and Jaisul. The latter became Raja of Jaisalmer, where his descendants still reign. The former remained in Bhattiana— he had cny ore son, named Janra, who had several wives (all of other castes) by whom he had 21 sons, whose

Bhatti traditions

carries us back to the ancient city of Bhatner, which lies on the banks of the long since dry Ghaggar, in the territory of that State bordering on Sirsa. But in that tract, which corresponds to the old Bhattiana, the Bhatti is no longer a dominant tribe and the term is loosely applied to any Muhammadan Jat or Rajput from the direction of the Sutlej, as a generic term almost synonymous with Rath or Pachhada.

In the central Punjab, however, and towards the north of it, the Bhattis, though scattered, hold strong positions. In Amritsar tradition avers that they have a 'long pedigree' beginning with Adam, 10th in descent from whom was Krishna, son of Jad, the son of Jadam. And the present State of Kapurthala was held by a Raja who sought the aid of Lakhanpal and Harpal, sons of the Rana, Purab Chand, of Bhatner against his foes. Accompanied by Panpal, a third son of the Rana by a Jat wife, they overran the neighbouring country ; but the Raja refused to give them the share he had agreed to bestow upon them, so they put him to death and partitioned his kingdom, Lakhanpal taking the Bari Doab, Harpal that of the Bist Jalandhar and Panpal the modern Ferozepur District, Rai Viru, Lakhanpal's great-grandson, founded Vairowal in Amritsar some 540 years ago and his grand-daughter, a sister of Rai Mitha, was married to Rai Ibrahim of Kapurthala, himself a Bhatti and descended from Harpal. But after a futile attempt to subdue Rai Mitha, Ibrahim forbade intermarriage between the two branches.

Kapurthala, tradition is, however, quite silent as to Lakhanpal or Harpal, and, according to legends current in that State, Rai Nanak Chand is said to have left Bhatner and settled in Bhulana, in that State. Three brothers Bhatti, Manj and Chauhan founded the Rajput tribes so named, which settled in the Punjab only 14 generations ago.

Nevertheless reciprocal marriage is confined to the Bhatti, Manj, Naru and Khokhar* tribes, which avoid marriage with the Chauhan, Awan, Nipal, Bajoha, Janjua, Punwar, Varya.

The Khokhars and Narus are regarded as foreign by race to the other Rajputs, who all trace back their descent to Raja Salivahan who has a shrine at Sialkot. He is said to have been defeated by Imam Nasir.

In Gujrat the Bhattis trace their first settlements back to Dulla Bhatti, Raja of Pindi Bhattian who was put to death by Akbar. All his family was in Akbar's camp on the Jhelum, where they were kept in durance until released at the intercession of a faqir whose shrine is still pointed out at Chhapar on the bank of that river. Dulla's son, Kamal Khan was allowed to settle on the waste lands near Ghaman, still a Bhatti village, while the rest returned to Pindi Bhattian.

descendants established different tribes, such as the Lakhiwal, Sidhu, and Barar Jats. Janra founded the town of Abohur, naming it after his wife Abho— by this wife he had three sons- Rajpal, Chun and Dhum :— the Wattu Bajputs are descendants of the first- the Mai Bajputs of the second— and the Nawab of Rania and his family, of the third. Inasmuch as the Bhattis were more numerous than the rest, the country was called Bhattiana. The habits, manners and customs of Bhatti Rajputs are similar to those of the Tunwar Rajputs. Hissar Settlement Report, p. 8, §§ 25, 26.

* The Khokhars (alone) give daughters to Sayyids.
The tribal, mirasi gives the following pedigree of the tribe, "which claims Maharaja Ranjit
A Bhatti pedigree

The Bhatti of the Gujaranwala Bār, where they are the " natural enemies of the Virk," are descended from one Dhir, who eighteen generations ago left Bhatner, and settled in the Nur Mahal jungles- as a grazier and freebooter. His grandson went further on to the banks of the Ravi, and his son again moved up into the uplands of Gujaranwala. The modern descendants of these men are described as "a muscular and noble-looking race of men, agriculturists more by constraint than by natural inclination, who keep numerous herds of cattle which graze over the pasture lands of the Bār, only plough just sufficient to grow food for their own necessities, and are famous as cattle-lifters and notorious thieves." The Bhatti of Gujaranwala enjoyed considerable political importance in former times, and they still hold 86 villages in that District. In Sialkot the Bhatti claim descent from Bhoni seventh in descent from their eponymous ancestor Bhatti, who came to Gujaranwala from Bikaner, and thence to Sialkot. None of these Bhatti of the Bār will give their daughters to the

Singh as one of its scions : —

Bhatti Pedigree

Padam Nath had three sons: 1. Wichar. 2. Sahnsi. (Maharaja Ranjit Singh of Lahore was descended from this branch. 3. Bhauni.

1. Wichar → Kaji. + Shadi. (Gujranwala)

2. Sahnsi. (Maharaja Ranjit Singh (Punjab)) was descended from this branch.

3. Bhauni → Gaundhar → Dhairvi → Ohs → Danu → Lakhira → Chuhar → Dhang → Katho → Nathu → Bijli → Farid → Dulla → Kamal Khan. (Gujrat)

Bhatti Chane-Bhittanni

neighbouring Jat tribes, though they will take wives from among them without scruple.* In the Salt-range the Bhatti seem to bold a very Subordinate position as Bhatti, though it may be that some of the innumerable Rajput tribes of that tract may consider themselves Bhatti, as well as whatever their local name may be. The Bhatti of Jhang hold the considerable Bhattiora tract north of the Chenab. They came first from Bhatner to the right bank of the Jhelum near the Shahpur border, and thence to Bhattiora. They are described as "a fine race of men, industrious agriculturists, hardly at all in debt, good horse-breeders, and very fond of sport. They do very little cattle-lifting, but are much addicted to carrying off each other's wives."

The persistence of the traditions which connect the Bhattis with Bikaner, Jaisalmer and the old fortress of Bhatner cannot be disregarded. But for a fuller discussion of their origins see Rajput.

Bhatti (भट्टी) is also (1) a Baloch clan (agricultural) found in Montgomery, as well as (2) a Muhammadan Kamboh clan (agricultural), and (3) a Muhammadan Jat clan (agricultural) in that District.


  • Bheda (भेदा), an agricultural clan found in Shahpur.
  • Bhekh-dhari (भेख-धारी), Bhekhi (भेखी), a faqir, a sadhu: from bhekh, dress, disguise, and so "a sect of Hindu faqirs".
  • Bhikkhak (भिक्खक), bhichchak q.v.
  • Bhin (भिन), an agricultural clan found in Shahpur.
  • Bhindal (भिन्दल), a tribe of Jats claiming Solar Rajput origin, through its eponym, whose descendant Badar embraced Islam. It holds five villages in Sialkot.
  • Bhindar (भिंडर), a tribe of Jats of the Lunar branch of the Lunar Rajputs, through its eponym, who settled in the Punjab under Rai Tanar. Found in Sialkot.
  • Bhisti (भिस्ती), fem. -aṇ, (bhistā, facetiously), lit., a dweller in Paradise, fr. Pers. bihisht ; a Muhammadan water-carrier.
  • Bhittanni (भित्तान्नी) occupies a tract of hill country some 40 miles long by 12 to 16 wide, stretching along our border from the Marwat tahsil of Bannu to the Gumal valley. Along the northern part of this line, it owns little or

* As among the Muhammadan Chibb, Manhas and other tribes, a Jati (जाटी) who espouses a Bhatti becomes a Bhattini by tribe according to the proverb Chhutti Raja, te hoi Rani : 'Touched by a Raja (a woman) becomes a Rani.' In Ladhiana the Shaikhs, a Bhatti clan, derive their name from Shaikh Chachu, a descendant of Raja Kanshan who accepted Islam and was granted the State of Hathur by the Muhammadan emperors. For some other Bhatti clan names see the Appendix.

Being Improved
Bhojiya — Bhojki

no land in the plains ; to the south it holds a strip of very fertile country extending from the Takwara along the hills as far as Dabbra. It has a few scattered hamlets in the Nasran country north of the Takwara, and is also found in considerable numbers in the north-east of the Gumal valley. To the west the hill country of the Bhittannis is hemmed in by that of the Wazirs. The two tribes are generally more or less at feud, though the Bhittannis, till recently, never scrupled to assist Wazir robbers in their incursions into British territory.

The Bhittaonis live in small villages, generally hidden away in hollows. Their houses are mud and brushwood hovels of the poorest description, and sometimes they live in caves hollowed out of the rock. One of their principal places is Jandola, ou the road leading up the Tank zam to the Wazir country.

The tribe is divided into three sections : Dhanna, Tatta and Wraspun. In the plains the lands of the Bhittannis were originally dividend into numerous small divisions, known as nalas. Each nala as a rule, forms a single plot, owned by a number of families generally closely connected by birth. The waste land in each nālā is the property of the ā proprietors. Before land became valuable, the proprietors of the different nalās used readily to admit men of their own subsection to a share in the nālās lands, and in this way, men, who had before lived exclusively in the hills, were continually settling in the plains. There has never been, therefore, any actual division of the country on shares, and the present proprietors hold purely on a squatting tenure. The lands of the Wraspuns lie to the north, the Tattas to the south, and the Dhannas in the middle. The Dhannas own much less land than the other two sections, and fewer of them reside in the plains. The plain Bhittannis live in scattered kirris or villages. The larger nalas have separate kirris and headmen of their own but more generally the people of several nālās live together in one kirri, under a common headman.

Bhojiya (भोजिया), a Muhammadan Jat clan (agricultural) found in Montgomery.

Bhojki (भोजकी), a term applied to the pujāris or officiants at the great shrines of Devi, such as that of Jawalamukhi, that at Bhaun in the Kangra District, Naina Devi in Hoshiarpur, etc. The Bhojkis were said by Barnes to be "not Brahmans, though they are the hereditary priests of these celebrated temples. They all wear the sacred thread; they intermarry among themselves alone, eat flesh, drink wine, and are a debauched and profligate set ; the men are constantly in the Courts involved in litigation, and the women are notorious for their loose morality." Colonel Jenkins writes of them: — "The Bhojkis are perhaps a unique feature of the Kangra District. They claim to be Sārsut Brahmans ; but if so, have certainly sunk in the social scale, as no ordinary Brahmans would eat kachi rasoi with them. They appear to occupy much the same position as the Gangaputras of Benares, and the probability is that they are mere Jogis who have obtained a reflected sanctity from the goddesses whose service they have entered. The name is evidently connected with the Sanskrit root bhoj to feed,* and is taken from the nature of their duties. They

* The term is probably derived from bhoj in the sense of 'grant' and the Bhoj kf a are probably merely beneficed Brahman devotees of Devi.

Bhojuānā — Bhūlar
intermarry among themselves and with a class of Jogis called Bodha Pandits. Another account states that the Bhojkis of Bhaun do not give daughters to those of Jawalamukhi or Naina Devi, though up to Sambat 1936 they used to accept brides from the latter, whom they regard as inferiors. The Bhojkis of Bhaun now ony intermarry among themaselves, excluding their own got and the mother's relatives up to the 7th degrree. But they also intermarry with the Pandit Bodhas and the Bararas. The former are said to be Brahmans, but both they and the Bararas take a deceased's shroud, etc., like the Achāraj. The Bhojkis of Chintpurni are Brahmans and marry with Brahmans, and will not even smoke with those of Bhaun, etc."
  • Bhukyal (भूक्याल), mentioned in the Tabaqāt-i-Akbari as a tribe subject to the Gakhars,* but in the Waki'āt-i-Jahangiri they are said to be of the same stock and connected with the Gakhars, occupying the country between Rohtas and Hatya, to which they give their name of Bugial.
  • Bhular (भूलर). — The Bhular, Her, and Man tribes call themselves asl or "original" Jats, and are said to have sprung from the jaṭ or "matted-hair" of Mahadeo, whose title is Bhola ('simple') Mahadeo. They say that the Malwa was their original home, and are commonly reckoned as two and a half tribes, the Her only counting as a half. But the bards of the Man, among which tribe several families have risen to political importance, say that the whole of the Man and Bhular and half the Her tribe of Rajputs were the earliest Kshatriya immigrants from Rajasthan to the Punjab. The head-quarters of the Bhular appear to be Lahore and Ferozepur, and the confines of the Manjha and Malwa; but they are returned in small numbers from every division in the Punjab except Delhi and Rawalpindi, from almost every District, and from every Native State of the Eastern Plains except Dujana, Loharu, and Pataudi. The tribe is probably not a wholly homogeneous one. In Jind its Sidh is Kalanjar, whose samddh is at Mari, and to it milk is offered on the 14th badi of each month ; also cloth at a wedding or the birth of a son. In Sialkot its Sidh is Bhora, whose khāngāh is revered at weddings. In Montgomery the Bhular are Hindu and Muhammadan Jats and classed as agricultural.

* E.H.I, V., p. 278.
Ibid VI, p. 309.

  • Bhunda (भुण्डा), an aboriginal tribe, a man of that tribe. (P. D, 145).
  • Bhut (भूत), a tribe found in the Sādiqābād kaārdāri of Bahawalpur where they are landowners and tenants. They are formed from two distinct groups, one a Baloch, the other a Jat sept, the former being few, and the latter numerous. The Bhut Jats are possibly a branch of the Abrahs, with whom they intermarry, but they are also said to be a branch of the Bhattis.
  • Bhutar (भूतार), M., a landowner.
  • Bhutta (भुट्टा). — The Bhutta are said by the late Mr. E. O'Brien to have traditions connecting them with Hindustan, and they claim to be descended from Solar Rajputs. But since the rise to opulence and importance of Pirzada Murad Bakhsh Bhutta, of Multan, many of them have taken to calling themselves Pirzadas. One account is that they are immigrants from Bhutan — a story too obviously suggested by the name. They also often practise other crafts, such as making pottery or weaving, instead of or in addition to agriculture. They are said to have held Uch (in Bahawalpur) before the Sayyids came there. They are chiefly found on the lower Indus, Chenāband Jhelum, in Shahpur, Jhang, Multan, Muzaffargarh, and Dera Ghazi Khan. In Jhang most are returned as Rajputs. The Bhutta shown scattered over the Eastern Plains are perhaps members of the small Bhutna or Bhutra clan of Malwa Jats. See also Butar. and Buta. Maclagan describes them as a Jat or Rajput clan found in Multan tahsil and allied to the Langahs, etc., Bhutta, Langah, Dahar, Shajra and Naich, being said to be sons of Mahli in the couplet : —
Saghi, jihāndi dādi, Sodi jihāndi mā,
Mahli jāi panj putr — Dahar, Bhutta, Langah, Naich, Shajra.
A branch of this clan at Khairpur near Multan is in the transition stage towards becoming Sayyid.
According to the Bahawalpur tradition the Bhutta are of the same stock as the Bhatia.* When Dewa Rawal, sister's son of Raja Jajja Bhutta, was building the fort now called Derawar Jajja in a fit of jealousy stopped its construction ; whereupon his sister who was married to a Bhatia Rajput thus addressed him : —
Rāi Jajja Bhuttā sen wain ki bhain puchhāe,
Kaya Bhutta kaya Bhatia Kot usdran de.
Meaning: "His sister besought Rai Jajja, the Bhutta:Whether thou art a Bhutta or a Bhatia, let the fort be built."


  • Bib (बिब), a small and humble (agricultural) tribe, holding one or two villages in Abbottabad tahsil, Hazara district, and possibly connected with the Awans.
  • Bibizai (बीबिजई), a Pathan clan (agricultural) found in Amritsar.

* The Bahawalpur traditions make the Bhatia (Jaisalmer family), the Bhuttas, Bhattis

and Wattus all one and the same family.

  • Bihanggan (बिहंग्गन), one who has not a fixed abode, a faqir who subsists on alms.
  • Bilai (बिलई ), a low Purbia caste of syces and grass-cutter. But see also under Chamar.
  • Bilaiti (बिलाइती), fem. -aṇ a foreigner a European or an Afghan.
  • Birajpani (बिरजपानी), a disreputable sub-sect of the Bām-mārgi, q.v.


  • Bishnoi* (बिश्नोई) Pahlad Bansi, (fr. Vishnu, one of the Hindu Trinity), a sect whose founder Jhambaji lived towards the end of the 15th century. Tradition says that at Pinpasar, a village south of Bikaner, in the Jodhpur territory, lived Laut, a Rajput Punwar, who had attained the age of 60 and had no son. One day a neighbour going out to sow his field met Laut, and deeming it a bad omen to meet a childless man, turned back from his purpose. This cut Laut to the quick, and he went out to the jungle and bewailed his childlessness until evening, when a faqir appeared to him and told him that in nine months he should have a son, and after showing his miraculous power by drawing milk from a calf, vanished from his sight. At the time named a child miraculously appeared in Laut's house, and was miraculously suckled by his wife Hānsa. This happened in Sambat 1508 (A.D. 1451). For seven years the boy, who was an incarnation (autār) of Vishnu, played with his fellows, and then for 27 years he tended cattle, but all this time he spoke no word. His miraculous powers were shown in various ways, such as producing sweets from nothing for the delectation of his companions, and he became known as Achamba (the Wonder), whence his name of Jhamba, by which he is generally known. After 34 years, a Brahman was sent for to get him to speak and on his confessing his failure Jhambaji again showed his power by lighting a lamp by simply snapping his fingers, and uttered his first word. He then adopted the life of a teacher, and went to reside on a sandhill, some thirty miles south of Bikaner, where after 51 years he died and was buried, instead of being burnt, like an ordinary Hindu.
Another account of Jhambaji says that —
" When a lad of five he used to take his father's herds to water at the well, and had for each head of cattle a peculiar whistle ; the cows and bullocks would come one by one to the well, drink and go away. One day a man named Udaji happened to witness this scene, and, struck with astonishment, attempted to follow the boy when he left the well. He was on horseback and the boy on foot, but gallop as fast as he would he could not keep up with the walking pace of the boy. At last, in amazement, he dismounted and threw himself at his feet. The boy at once welcomed him by name, though he then saw him for the first time. The bewildered Udaji exclaimed Jhāmhaji (omni-

* Pronounced Vishnoi in Bahawalpur and Bikaner.
According to the Hisar Settlement Report his parents were Lohut and Kesar.

Bishnoi tenets

scient), and henceforth the boy was known by this name. On attaining manhood, Jbambaji left his home, and, becoming a faqir or religious mendicant, is said to have remained seated upon a sandhill called Samrathal in Bikaner, for a space of 51 years. In 1485 a fearful famine desolated the country, and Jhambaji gained an enormous number of disciples by providing food for all that would declare their belief in him. He is said to have died on his sandhill, at the good old age of 84, and to have been buried at a spot about a mile distant frora it."

A further Account says that his body remained suspended for six months in the pinjra without decomposing.

The name Bishnoi is of course connected with that of Vishnu the deity to whom the Bishnoia give most prominence in their creed though sometimes they themselves derive it from the 29 (bis-nau) articles of faith inculcated by their founder. In fact it was very difficult in our returns to distinguish the Bishnoi from the Vaishnav who was often entered as a Baishnav or Bishno. The Bishnois some- times call themselves Prahladbansis or Prahladpanthis,* on the ground that it was to please Prahlad-bhagat that Vishnu became incarnate in the person of Jhambaji. The legend is that 33 crores of beings were born along with Prahlad and five crores of them were killed by the wicked Hirnakash, and when Vishnu, as the Narsingh avatar, saved the life of Prahlad and asked Prahlad to name his dearest wish, the latter requested that Vishnu would effect the salvation (mukt) of the remaining 28 crores. To do this required a further incarnation, and Jhambaji was the result.

Tenets of the Bishnois. — Regarding the doctrines of the sect Sir James Wilson, from whom I have already quoted, writes: —

" The sayings (sabd) of Jhambaji to the number of 120 were written down by his disciples, and have been handed down in a book (pothi) written in the Nagri character and in a dialect similar to Bagri seemingly a Marwari dialect. The 29 precepts given by him for the guidance of his followers are as follows : —

Tis din sutak—pānch roz ratwanti nāri
Sera karo shnān — sil — santokh — suchh pyāri
Pāni — bāni — idhni — itnd lijyo chhān.
Dayā — dharm hirde dharo — garu batāi jān
Chori — nindya — jhuth — barjya bād na kariyo koe
Amal— tamāku — bhang — lil dur hi tyāgo
Mad — mās se dekhke dur hi bhāgo.
Amar rakhāo thāt — bail tani nā bāho
Amāshya barat — runkh lilo na ghāo.
Hom jap samādh pujā — bāsh baikunthi pāo
Untis dharm ki ākhri garu batāi soe
Pāhal doe par chāvya jisko nam Bishnoi hoe,

which is thus interpreted : — "For 30 days after child-birth and five after a menstrual discharge a woman must not cook food. Bathe in the morning. Commit not adultery. Be content. Be abstemious and pure. Strain your drinking water. Be careful of your speech. Ex-

* See also under Narsinghie.
Sirsa Settlement Report, page 136,

Bishnoi observances

amine your fuel in case any living creature be burnt with it. Show pity to living creatures. Keep duty present to your mind as the Teacher bade. Do not speak evil of others. Do not tell lies. Never quarrel. Avoid opium, tobacco, bhang and blue clothing. Flee from spirits and flesh. See that your goats are kept alive (not sold to Musalmans, who will kill them for food). Do not plough with bullocks. Keep a fast on the day before the new moon. Do not cut green trees. Sacrifice with fire. Say prayers. Meditate. Perform worship and attain Heaven. And the last of the 29 duties prescribed by the Teacher — 'Baptize your children, if you would be called a true Bishnoi'."

Some of these precepts are not strictly obeyed ; for instance, although ordinarily they allow no blue in their clothing, yet a Bishnoi, if he is a servant of the British Government, is allowed to wear a blue uniform ; and Bishnois do use bullocks, though most of their farming is done with camels. They also seem to be unusually quarrelsome (in words) and given to use bad language. But they abstain from tobacco, drugs and spirits, and are noted for their regard for animal life, which is such that not only will they not themselves kill any living creature, but they do their utmost to prevent others from doing so. Consequently their villages are generally swarming with antelope and other animals, and they forbid their Musalman neighbours to kill them and try to dissuade European sportsmen from interfering with them. They wanted it made a condition of their settlement, that no one should be allowed to shoot on their land, but at the same time they asked that they might be assessed at lower rates than their neighbours on the ground that the antelope being thus left undisturbed do more damage to their crops; but I told them this would lessen the merit (pun) of their good actions in protecting the animals, and they must be treated just as the surrounding villages were. They consider it a good deed to scatter grain to pigeons and other birds, and often have a large number of half-tame birds about their villages. The day before the new moon they observe as a Sabbath and fast-day, doing no work in the fields or in the house. They bathe and pray three times a day, — in the morning, afternoon, and in the evening — saying "Bishno, Bishno " instead of the ordinary Hindu " Ram Ram." Their clothing is the same as of other Bagris, except that their women do not allow the waist to be seen, and are fond of wearing black woolen clothing. They are more particular about ceremonial purity than ordinary Hindus are, and it is a common saying that if a Bishnoi's food is on the first of a string of twenty camels, and a man of another caste touches the last camel of the string, the Bishnoi would consider his food defiled and throw it away."

The ceremony of initiation is as follows : —

" A number of representative Bishnois assemble, and before them a sādh or Bishnoi priest, after lighting a sacrificial fire (horn) instructs the novice in the duties of the faith. He then takes some water in a new earthen vessel, over which he prays in a set form (Bishno gāyatri), stirring- it the while with his string of beads (māla), and after asking the consent of the assembled Bishnois, he pours the water three times into the hands of the novice, who drinks it off. The novice's scalp

Bishnoi rites

lock (choti) is then cut off and his head shaved, for the Bishnois shave the whole head and do not leave a scalp-lock like the Hindus ; but they allow the beard to grow, only shaving the chin on the father's death. Infant baptism is also practised, and 30 days after birth the child whether boy or girl, is baptised by the priest (sādh) in much the same way as an adult ; only the set form of prayer is different (garbh-gāyatri), and the priest pours a few drops of water into the child's mouth, and gives the child's relatives each three handfuls of the consecrated water to drink; at the same time the barber clips off the child's hair. This baptismal ceremony also has the effect of purifying the house which has been made impure by the birth (sutak).*

The Bishnois intermarry among themselves only, and by a ceremony of their own in which it seems the circumambulation of the sacred fire, which is the binding ceremony among the Hindus generally, is omitted. They do not revere Brahmans, but have priests (sadhs) of their own, chosen from among the laity. They do not burn their dead, but bury them below the cattle-stall or in a place frequented by cattle, such as a cattle-pen. They observe the Holi in a different way from other Hindus. After sunset on that day they fast till the next forenoon, when, after hearing read the account of how Prahlad was tortured by his infidel father Harnakash for believing in the god Vishnu, until he was delivered by the god himself in his incarnation of the Lion-man, and mourning over Prahlad's sufferings, they light a sacrificial fire and partake of consecrated water, and after distributing unpurified sugar (guṛ) in commemoration of Prahlad's delivery from the fire into which he was thrown, they break their fast. Bishnois go on pilgrimage where Jhambaji is buried, south of Bikaner, where there is a tomb (mat) over his remains and a temple (mandir) with regular attendants (pujari) . A festival takes place here every six months, in Asauj and Phāgan, when the pilgrims go to the sandhill on which Jhāmbaji lived, and there light sacrificial fires (hom) of jandi wood in vessels of stone, and offer a burnt offering of barley, til, ghi and sugar, at the same time muttering set prayers. They also make presents to the attendants of the temple, and distribute moth and other grain for the peacocks and pigeons, which live there in numbers. Should any one have committed an offence, such as having killed an animal, or sold a cow or goat to a Musalman, or allowed an animal to be killed when he could have prevented it, he is fined by the assembled Bishnois for the good of the temple and the animals kept there. Another place of pilgrimage is a tomb called Chhambola in the Jodhpur country, where a festival is held once a year in Chet. There the pilgrims bathe in the tank and help to deepen it, and sing and play musical instruments and scatter grain to peacocks and pigeons,"

The Bishnois look with special attention to the sacred hom or sacrifice; it is only the rich who can perform this daily ; the poor meet together

* But according to the Hissar Settlement Report, the ceremony of admission to the sect is as follows : — The priests and the people assemble together, repeat the pahul-mantar over a cup of water, and give it to the candidate to drink ; who thereafter goes round the assembly and bows to all. His head is then shaved after the manner of the founder of the sect. According to his means he has to pay a certain sum of money (Rs. 5 to 500 is the limit), for the purpose of buying gram, which is then sent to the Samrathal sandhill in order to feed pigeons.
But in Fazilka the Bishnois are said to employ Brahmans for religious as well as secuilar purposes.

Bochah — Bodla

to carry out the rite on the Amāvas day only. The gaenas or sādhs* who are their priests and are fed and feed by them like Brahmans, are a hereditary class and do not intermarry with other Bishnois, nor do they take offerings from any but Bishnois. The Bishnois themselves are a real caste and were shown as such in the Census tables ; and the returns of the caste are much more to be relied on than those of the sect, for the reason given above, that many Bishnois by sect must have been shown as Vaishnavas, and vice versa. It is said that a member of any of the higher Hindu castes may become a Bishnoi, but as a matter of fact they are almost entirely Jats or Khatis (carpenters) or, less frequently, Rajputs or Banias, and the Bania Bishnois are apparently not found in the Punjab, their chief seat being Muradabad, in the United Provinces. The man who becomes a Bishnoi is still bound by his caste restrictions ; he no longer calls himself a Jat, but he can marry only Jat Bishnois, or he is no longer a Khati, and yet cannot marry any one who is not a Khati ; and further than this, the Bishnoi retains the got of his original tribe and may not marry within it. Karewa is practised among them, but an elder brother cannot marry a younger brother's widow, though her brother-in-law or father-in-law are entitled, if she do not marry her dewar, to a payment called bhar from her second husband.

There is not perhaps very much in the teaching of Jhambaji to distinguish him from the orthodox pattern of Hindu saints, and in some points his doctrine, more especially with regard to the preservation of life, is only an intensification of the ordinary Vaishnava tenets. But in the omission of the phera at marriage, the cutting off of the choti or scalp-lock, the special ceremony of initiation, and the disregard for the Brahmanicul priesthood, we find indications of the same spirit as that which moved the other Hindu reformers of the period.


  • Bodla (बोदला). — The Bodlas are a small section of the Wattu Raputs†† of the lower and middle Sutlej, who have for some generations enjoyed a character for peculiar sanctity, § and who now claim Qureshi origin from Abu Bakr Sadiq ; and many of them call themselves Qureshis. They still marry Wattu girls,- though they give their daughters only to Bodlas. They were till lately a wholly pastoral tribe, and still hold a jagir, the proceeds of which they now supplement by cultivation. They came up from Multan through Bahawalpur to Montgomery, where they were described by Purser as "lazy, silly, and conceited" From Montgomery they spread into Sirsa, where they occupied the Bahak pargana which they still hold. They are credited with the power of curing disease by exorcism, and especially snake-bite and hydrophobia; they are recognised saints, and can curse with great efficacy. They have no relations with the other Qureshis of the neighbourhood, and

* According to the Hissar Settlement Report the sadhs are priests and the thapun are secular clergy, generally elected by the people. Priesthood is not hereditary. In Fazilka it is said that Bishnois never employ a Brahman if a Bhat is available. The Bhat too is a Bishnoi.
In Fazilka the Bishnois are said to have 360 divisions : one named Roja, meaning nilgai, but no reverence is paid to that animal by the Rojas. Cf. Goraya.
†† No Wattu would claim affinity with the Bodlas, who are held in great respect in Bikaner, as Parmeshwar ro sakko ro sakko, i.e., ' Kin of God's kith and kin.' The use of Parmeshwar for Allah points to a Hindu origin.
§ Bodla in Western Punjabi means 'simpleton ', and simplicity or lunacy is regarded as asign of sanctity in the East.


their Wattu origin is hereby open to question, though they may possibly be of Qureshi extraction, but now so completely affiliated to the Wattus by constantly taking brides from that tribe as to be undistinguishable from them. Their power of curing snake-bites is connected with a historical fact. When the Prophet and his companion Abu Bakar left Mecca, they concealed themselves in a cavern, and there the devoted companion, in order to protect his master, tore his turban into rags and closed the holes with the pieces. One hole he stopped with his toe, and it was bitten by a snake. When the Prophet learnt what had occurred he cured it by sucking the wound, and the Sadiqis sometimes seek to prove their descent from the first Caliph by claiming the power of curing snake-bite. There is also said to be a class of wondering gharishti faqirs called Bodla. A Saniasi sub-sect also appears to bear this name. Possibly the word is confused with Bhola, 'simple', an epithet of Mahadev. See also Qureshi.

  • Bohra (बोहरा). — The Bohrā includes two distinct classes : one Brahman money-lenders from Marwar, who have settled in the districts on the Jumna, and acquired a most unenviable notoriety for unscrupulous rapacity. There is a rustic proverb : Bore kā Rām Rām aisā Jam ka sandesā : "A Bohrā's 'good morning!' is like a message from the angel of death." These Bohras appear to accept brides from Banias, but do not give them daughters.
In the hills any money-lender or shop-keeper is apparently called a bohra (from the same root as beohār 'trade', and the word is used in the same general sense in the south of Rajasthan and in Bombay, taking the place of the 'Bania' of Hindustan, though in Guzerat it is specially applied to a class of Shia traders who were converted to Islam about 1300 A. D. (For the Mnhammadan Bora see Wilson's Sects of the Hindus, p. 170. They are represented in Multan) In the Punjab all the Bohras are Hindus. In those Hill States in which Bohras are numerous, Banias are hardly represented in the returns, and vice versa ; and both the Bania and Bohra are in the hills also known as Mahajan. The Hill Bohra,s are said to be exceedingly strict Hindus, and to be admitted to intermarriage with the lower classes of Rajputs, such as Rathis and Rawats. In Gurdaspur there is said to be a small class of traders called Bohras who claim Jat origin, and who are notorious for making money by marrying their daughters, securing the dower, and then running away with both, to begin again da capo.
  • Bomi (बोमी), a Rajput sept, according to the Punjabi Dicty., p. 166.
  • Bon (बोण), Bona (बोण), fem. Bonai (बोनाई), a weaver of the Chamar caste.

* Beames gives wohora as the true form of the word. Wohra is a got or section of the Muhammadan Khojas. It is fairly clear that the Bohras are connccted in some way with the Khojas. In Mewar there are Muhammadan B(h)oras as well as Bora Brahmans. The former are united under elected mullahs and are said to be Hassanis by sect . cf. Malcolm'e History of Persia I, p. 395. Their chief colony is at Ujjain. See Memoir on Central India and Malwa, by Malcolm, II, pp. 91-92.

Bopahrāe — Brahman
  • Bosan (बोसन), a Jat clan (agricultural) found in Multan, to the south of the Vains. Their ancestor is said to have been a disciple of Bahawal Haqq and to have received from him some of the land granted to him by the ruler of Multan. They came from Haidarabad in Sind and are also found in Bahawalpur as landowners. The Bappis, with whom they intermarry, and Sangis are said to be of the same stock.
  • Bozdar (बोजदार), an independent Baloch tribe situated beyond our frontier at the back of the Kasrani territory. They hold from the Sanghar Pass on the north to the Khosa and Khetran country on the south, and have the Luni and Musa Khel Pathans on their western border. Those found in Dera Ghazi Khan live in scattered villages about Rajanpur and among the Laghari tribe, and have no connection with the parent tribe. The Bozdar are hardly of Rind extraction seeing that their pedigree only makes them descendants of a goat-herd who married Bano, widow of Rind's great-grandson, Shau Ali. They are divided into the Dulani, Ladwani Ghulamani, a suh-tuman, Chakrani, Sihani, Shahwani, Jalalani, Jafirani and Rustamani clans. They are more civilized than most of the trans-frontier tribes and are of all the Baloch the strictest Musalmans. Unlike all other Baloch they fight with the matchlock rather than with the sword. They are great graziers, and their name is said to be derived from the Persian buz, a goat.


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To be Expanded

The religion of the Beahmans

The Brahman, even the Husaini, is almost always a Hindu, but a few have become Sikhs. Conversion, however, does not appear to have created any new divisions in the caste, though it has had a disruptive influence in the following case : — The Pātak section of the Sārsut Brahmans has two sub -divisions, Machhi-khānā and Khir-khānā. The former are parohits of the third Guru of the Sikhs (Guru Amar Das), who was a Baishnav (abstainer from meat and drink). The second Guru (Angad used to eat meat and fish. In order to follow the second Guru's habit and yet maintain his Baishnav-ship, the third Guru gave a fish at the bhnddan (head-shaving) ceremony of his son to his parohit, and so his descendants are called Machhi-khānās (fish-eaters) to this day. And the descendants of the third Guru at a son's bhaddan at their temple at Gondwāl in Amritsar give a fish, made of gram -flour and boiled in oil, to their parohit (a descendant of the original Machhi-khānā) instead of a live one. The ceremony, however, no longer called bhaddan — since shaving the head is prohibited among the Sikhs — and in its stead, the custom is to make the boy wear his hair long like a Sikh's, whereas before that the boys' hair was cut and plaited like a girl's.

  • Brahm-chari (ब्रह्म-चारी),* a religious student ; a Brahman from the time of his investiture with the Brahmanical thread until he becomes a house-holder; one who studies the Vedas under a spiritual teacher; an ascetic, a class of Hindu Sadhus.
  • Brok-pa (ब्रोक-पा), 'highlander,' a term applied to the Shin element in Baltistan : Biddulph, Tribes of the Hindoo Koosh, Ch. IV.


  • Buch (बुच), a Jat or Rajput clan found in Multan tahsil, where they were settled by Shahzada Murad Bakhsh, governor of Multan, under Shah Jahan.
  • Budh (बुध), a Baloch clan (agricultural) found in Montgomery.
  • Budli (बुदली), Budni (बुदनी), the people, now extinct or absorbed, which held the country from Nangrahar to the Indus prior to the Afghan immigrations. They were divided into several tribes and are described by the Akhund Darweza as Kafirs, but he does not refer to them as Buddhists.

* Barmh or Barahm, is corrupted from the Sanskrit word Brahma.
Bughti — Buzurg
  • Bughti (बुघती), Bugti (बुगती), also called Zarkanni, an organized Baloch tuman which occupies the angle between the frontiers of the Punjab and Upper Sindh. Its clans are the Raheja, Nothani,* Masori, Kalphur, Phong or Mondrani and Shambani or Kiazai. The last, which is an almost independent section, separates the main tribe from our border; while the Marri lie still further west. The Bugti are made up of various elements, chiefly Rind, but claim descent from Gyandar, son of Mir Chakur, whose son Raheja gave his name to one of its septs, though the name has an Indian sound. The Nothani clan has supernatural powers (see p. 46, sujpra) and the Shambani form a sub-tuman, which is sometimes considered distinct from the Bugti. This tuman has its head-quarters at Syahaf, formerly Marrao or Dera Bibrak (fr. bivaragh), a chief), also called Bugti Dera.
  • Buk (बुक), a Mahtam clan (agricultural) found in Montgomery.
  • Bukhari (बुखारी), a Sayyid clan (agricultural) found in Amritsar : see Sayyid.
  • Buna (बूना), Buniya (बूनिया): see Chamar.
  • Buraras (बुरड़स). — The Buraṛas, originally named Hojali, are claimed by some as a Samma sept, but others say they are a separate tribe. Their tradition is that they are descended from a Raja of Girnar near Junagadh, who migrated to Sindh and was converted to Islam. The saint who converted him gave him a bur- (Ar. for "cloak,") whence their name. They have three septs : — (i) Bhojri or Bhojri-patras, found in Bahawalpur and Bikaner, and the highest in status, (ti) Sathia, and (in) Jokhia.
  • Butara, fr. but, a stone. A caste of stone-cutters, found in the Kangra hills, who used to be employed on the forts and temples of that tract. Barnes described them as idle and dissipated.
  • Buttar (बुट्टर), a small Jat tribe found chiefly on the Upper Sutlej said to be descended from a Surajbansi Rajput who Came from the Lakki jungle and settled first in Gujranwala. Also found as a Hindu Jat clan (agricultural) in Montgomery.
  • Buzurg (बुज़ुर्ग), a title meaning 'saint,' acquired for instance by the Akhund of Swat in addition to that of Akhund.

* With two clans Zemakani or Durragh and Pherozani.

End of B

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