Virk

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Genealogy of Suryavansha

Virk (विर्क)[1] [2] Virak(विरक) Wirk (विर्क) Birk (बिर्क)[3] Birkh (बिर्ख) Birakh (बिरख)[4] Vrik (वृक)[5] Varika (वरिक) Barik (बरिक)[6] is a gotra of the Jat clan found in Punjab and Rajasthan and Pakistan. It is same as Varik. Typically, Virks are tall, thin and fair skinned. In the Western Punjab Virks are supposed to belong to Mahe dynasty, and Minhas are considered to be brethren of the Virks. Birk and Virk gotras are of same origin. Only due to linguistic differences pronunciation is different

Origin

Hyrcania on Map showing the route of Alexander the Great

Virk is very ancient clan known to Panini in the form of Vrika. V. S. Agrawala[7] mentions the names of Ayudhjivi Sanghas in the Panini's Ashtadhyayi Sutras which include Vṛika (V.3.115). Their Country was Varkania or Hyrcania called Gurgan in modern Persian.

History

V. S. Agrawala[8] mentions the names of Ayudhjivi Sanghas in the Panini's Sutras which include Vṛika (V.3.115) - [p.443]: An individual member of this Sangha was called Vārkeṇya, and the whole Sangha Vrika. This name standing alone in the Sutra with a suffix peculiar from the rest is hitherto untraced. It is stated to be Ayudhajivin, but not necessarily associated with Vahika. It should probably be identified with Varkaṇa, the old Persian form in the Behistun inscription of Darius, mentioned along with Pārthava or the Parthians (Behistun inscription Col. II.1.16). There is a striking similarity between the Sanskrit and old Persian forms of the name, e.g. Vārkeṇya equal to Vārkaṇa in the singular number , and Vrikah equal to Varkā in plural as in the expression Sakā Hauma-Varkā.


The Country of Vrikas: [p.444]: The Country of Vrikas seems to have being the same as Hyrcania lying to the north of Parthia and on the eastern corner of the Caspian (mod. Persian Gurgan, from Vrika=Gurg, in the valley of River of that name in the fertile district of Astarabad. The Persians distinguished the Varkas and infact all the northern war like equestrian people as Sakas (Persepolis Tomb Inscription, Sakā para-daria).

The name Vrika was known throughout the north-west as shown by its derivatives found in the several languages near Panini’s homeland, e.g. Ishkashmi werk, Yidgha wurk, wurg etc. The title Bakanapati or Barkanapati, the chief of Varkanas, is applied to a Saka Governor of Mathura who was associated with the foundation and repair of Devakula of Wima Kadphises (JRAS,1924, p.402; JBORS, xvi,p.258), whom Jayaswal identified as Hyrcanian Saka. Panini’s acquaintance with a branch of Sakas is not surprising, since he uses Saka word Kantha meaning 'town' in six sutras. The Sakas were very ancient race referred to in the old Persian Inscriptions of Darius and settled both in Sakasthana and on the borders of Parthia which were connected with Bahlika and Gandhara. Katyayana also has the expression Saka-Parthava in a varttika showing that in the 4th century BC he knew of Sakas and the Parthians, probably by way of commerce, previous to their political invasions.

The Virks are also a section of the Jats in the Punjab, who originally seem to have been Scythians.


V. S. Agrawala[9] writes that Panini mentions village name in category ending Rūpya (IV.2.106) - The Kāśikā mentions Vrikarupya (Vṛika-rūpya). Vijayendra Kumar Mathur[10] writes that Panini mentioned a janapada called Vrika in Punjab. It was probably Vrikasthala, which is the ancient name of Bagpat. Some people believe that Bagpat is derived from Vrikaprastha. Vrikasthala (=Vrikaprastha) was one of five places demanded by Pandavas to end the quarrel.[11]


V. S. Agrawala[12] writes that there is also the possibility that another Persian tribe came to be known in India in Panini’s time who refers to Vrikas as an Ayudhajivi Sangha, a community that lived by the profession of arms. An individual member of this tribe was called in Sanskrit as Vārkeṇya, a term which seems to correspond to Varakāṇa of the Behistun Inscription. The whole tribe was called Vrikāḥ, which corresponds to Varkā in plural number in the same Saka-Haumavarkā in the Naksh-i-Rustam Inscription. The Vrikas thus appear to be a section of warlike Saka tribes. (Cf.ante,pp.443-4).


Ram Swarup Joon[13] writes In the Sabha Parva, Mahabharata/Book II Chapter 48, while describing various Kings who attended a ceremony in the Durbar (court) of Maharaja Yudhisthira, seventeen names are mentioned which are today found as Jat gotras. These are Malhia, Mylaw, Sindhar, Gandhar, Mahity, Mahe, Savi, Bath, Dharan, Virk, Dard, Shaly, Matash, Kukar (Khokar) Kak, Takshak, Sand, Bahik (Bathi) Bije (Bijenia), Andhra, Sorashtra (Rathi) Mann, Ar, Sohat, Kukat, Othiwal (Othval).


Ram Swarup Joon[14] writes about Virk - Minhas: In the Western Punjab Virks are supposed to belong to Mahe dynasty, and Minhas are considered to be brethren of the Virks. They are mentioned in the history of Gujars. The name of the ancestor of the Virk gotra was Virk Vardhan. According to Patan Jali Bhashya 4.6-114, Ashtadhyayi l-6-155 Mahabhasya 4-2-154 and Kashika varti 1-1-175, Raja Virk Vardhan had his forts in Kasrud (Mandsor) ,


History of the Jats, End of Page-107


Central India, Shakil (Sialkot) Sosaph, Dathaaprastha, Naudipur, Koak, Kandewa, Mula, Pava Datt, Karkar, Virkgary etc.

According to historians the present Sheikhupura was the site of Virkgarh.

According to Th. Yugendrapal Virks are Vahikas who are mentioned in the Mahabharat and who took one sixth of the income of King Shalya. In the 4th century AD they had a powerful kingdom. They were contemporaries of Gupta rulers. According to Brij Indra Bhaskar, in 428 AD the Virk rulers performed a big Yagya near Bayana and constructed a Pillar, on which they mentioned as Virks. Rock inscriptions of Yashodharman have been found in Mandsor. Their reign in Malwa came to an end in 462.

King Singhavarma belonging to this dynasty ruled from 535 AD to 585 AD. He had two sons Narvarma and Chandravarma. Chandravarma's son was Yashovarman. According to a rock inscription found in Gandhar, he was an independent ruler. He had two sons, Bhimvarma and Bandhuvarma. Bondhuvarma was defeated by the Gupta rulers and Bhimvarma was appointed the Savant of a principality near Kausambhi but once more he became independent and allying himself with Anu Gupta fought the Huns. This has been referred to in the "Chandra Viyakaran".

Bhandhuvarman's son was Yashodharman and his son Shiladitya.

The Virk Jat Kapur Singh founded Kapurthala and made it his capital. Before Punjab's partition Sir Shahabuddin, member of the Punjab assembly and Secretary of Jat Sabha belonged to Tar in Sialkot. Jandiala in Amritsar belonged to the Virks.


B S Dahiya[15] writes: It is one of the most important clan. It is mentioned by Panini and V.S. Agrawal has identified Virk with the Jats. The same identification has been mentioned by Buddha Prakash. [16] Mahabhasya mentions Vrika and its derivative Varkenya, the Varkan of the Persians, and Hyrcan of the Greeks. The Caspian sea was once called the Sea of Vrkans (Hyrcanian). The identification of Hyrcan with Varkan has also been mentioned by Rawlinson in his History of Herodotus, he mentions that even in the thirteenth century, their country in Central Asian was mentioned as Urkanich in Yakut. According to Herodotus they fought in the battle of Thermopylae under their leader named Megapanus, who was afterwards Satrap of Babylonia. [17] They are one of the earliest clans too enter India, and up to the sixth century A.D. at least they were ruling in Malwa under their king Vishnuvardhana, Vrik. The Vriks are remembered in the Brahma, Vaman and Markandeya Puranas. Their antiquity goes very much deep in the past. A country called Uruk / Wark is mentioned in Sumeria, along with a country called Gutium. In fact, Trigan, the last Gutian King in the twenty-second century B.C. was defeated by Utu-Khegal, the ruler of Wark country. It is possible that this country has been named after them. The word Vrik in Sanskrit means a wolf the same as Russian Volka, which also means the same. The river Volga is named after [18] In the Kushana period an officer of Vima Kadphises was a Vrika, according to K.P.Jayaswal. [19]

According to Patan Jali Bhashya 4.6-114, Ashtadhyayi l-6-155 Mahabhasya 4-2-154 and Kashika varti 1-1-175, Raja Virk Vardhan had his forts in Kasrud (Mandsaur) , Central India, Shakil (Sialkot) Sosaph, Dathaaprastha, Naudipur, Koak, Kandewa, Mula, Pava Datt, Karkar, Virkgary etc.

According to historians the present Sheikhupura was the site of Virkgarh.

According to Th. Yugendrapal Virks are Vahikas who are mentioned in the Mahabharata and who took one sixth of the income of King Shalya. In the 4th century AD they had a powerful kingdom. They were contemporaries of Gupta rulers. According to Brij Indra Bhaskar, in 428 AD the Virk rulers performed a big Yagya near Bayana and constructed a Pillar, on which they mentioned as Virks. Rock inscriptions of Yasodharman have been found in Mandsaur. Their reign in Malwa came to an end in 462 AD.

King Singhavarma belonging to this dynasty ruled from 535 AD to 585 AD. He had two sons Narvarma and Chandravarma. Chandravarma's son was Yasovarman. According to a rock inscription found in Gandhar, he was an independent ruler. He had two sons, Bhimvarma and Bondhuvarma. Bondhuvarma was defeated by the Gupta rulers and Bhimvarma was appointed the Savant of a principality near Kausambhi but once more he became independent and allying himself with Anu Gupta fought the Huns. This has been referred to in the "Chandra Viyakaran".

Bhandhuvarma's son was Yasodharman and his son Shiladitya.

The Virk Jat Kapur Singh founded Kapurthala and made it his capital. Before Punjab's partition Sir Shahabuddin, member of the Punjab assembly and Secretary of Jat Sabha belonged to Tar in Sialkot. Jandiala in Amritsar belonged to the Virks.

In the History of Herodotus

Bhim Singh Dahiya[20] writes that the in the period from ninth century B.C. to the fourth century B.C., roughly the time between the Manda and Van empires and Alexander's invasion, we find numerous tribes of the Jats finding a name in the history of Herodotus and others. Among the tribes of the Medians, we find:

The ruling people are called Arizanti or Arizatoi. The word Ari is a form of Arya and Zanti/Zatoi are of course the Jats, the Djati of ancient Egypt and the Guti of Sumer and China.

In Mahavansa

Mahavansa/Chapter 32 tells....making of the chatta and the plaster-work' on the cetiya was finished the king fell sick with a sickness that was (fated) to be mortal. He sent for his younger brother Tissa from Dighavapi to complete the remaining work of Great Thupa at Anuradhapura.....

Mahavansa/Chapter 32 tells....When the thera Abhaya heard this he described those two gifts, to rejoice the king's heart withal, in manifold ways which includes:

वाह्लीक-वर्क-वरिक

दलीप सिंह अहलावत[21] लिखते हैं:

यह चन्द्रवंशीय जाट राज्य प्राचीन काल से है। इस वंश के लोगों के नाम पर वाह्लीक देश की स्थापना हुई। इसको बाद में बल्ख, बैक्ट्रिया और बाख्त्री नाम से भी कहा जाता है। (देखो तृतीय अध्याय, वाह्लीक-वरिक प्रकरण)।

इन वरिक लोगों का राज्य 2600 ई० पू० में सुमेरिया में था। इनके नाम पर इनका यह देश वर्क देश कहलाता था। इनके साथ में गुटियम देश (जाटों का देश) था, जिनका राज्य


जाट वीरों का इतिहास: दलीप सिंह अहलावत, पृष्ठान्त-343


पश्चिमी एशिया पर था जैसा कि पिछले पृष्ठ पर लिखा गया है। इस देश के अन्तिम सम्राट् त्रीगन को 2200 ईस्वी पूर्व में वर्क देश के राजा उतु-खेगल विर्क ने पराजित किया था[22]। वोल्गा नदी, जो उत्तर की ओर से आकर कैस्पियन सागर में गिरती है, विर्क या वर्क जाटों के नाम से है। (Political and Social Movements in Ancient Punjab, by Buddha Prakash, P. 102)।

रॉलिनसन ने ‘हैरोडोट्स का इतिहास’ नामक पुस्तक में लिखा है कि “इन विर्क लोगों का मध्य एशिया में ‘वर्कानिक’ नामक देश (रूस के याकुट्स्क प्रान्त में) सन् 1300 ई० में भी था। ये लोग अपने नेता मेगापानुस के नेतृत्व में थ्रमौपिलाय (Thermopylae) (यूनान में) के युद्ध में लड़े थे। इस युद्ध के पश्चात् इस नेता को बैबिलोनिया का राज्यपाल नियुक्त कर दिया गया।” (जिल्द 4, पृष्ठ 163)।

विर्क लोगों का देश विरकानिया (यूनानी भाषा में हिरकानिया) कहलाता था जिसकी स्थिति पर्थिया के उत्तर तथा कैस्पियन सागर के पूर्व में थी। वहां पर इनके नाम पर हिरकानिया पर्वत भी था। जब इन लोगों की शक्ति कैस्पियन सागर क्षेत्र पर हुई तब वह सागर ‘हिरकानिया सागर’ कहलाया[23]

फारस के जाट सम्राट् डेरियस (Darius) ने लगभग 521 ई० पू० से 515 ई० पू० में विर्क, कांग तथा अन्य साम्राज्यों और सीथियन जाटों के कालासागर के क्षेत्र में राज्य पर आक्रमण किए। परन्तु सिन्ध से लेकर कालासागर तक के जाटों को अपने अधीन नहीं कर सका[24]। इसका वर्णन आगे पृष्ठों पर मांडा साम्राज्य के प्रकरण में किया जाएगा।

Villages founded Virk by clan

Varik Khap

Varik Khap has 20 villages in Bulandshahr district in Uttar Pradesh. Main villages in Bulandshahr district are Saidpur (सैदपुर) , Sehra (सेहरा), Sihi (सीही), Pali (पाली), Bhamrauli (भामरौली), Pasauli (पसौली) . Jat Gotra - varik. This khap has villages in Hisar district - Gurana (गुराना) , Bhadaud (भदौड़) . In Punjab Kapurthala (कपूरथला) , Jhunga (झुनगा) , Bharatgad (भरतगद) , Dhanauri (धनौरी) , and Kandaula (कंदौला) jagirs were of this khap people.[25]

In Mahabharata

Vrika (वृक) has been mentioned in Mahabharata (I.177.9), (V.31.19), (VIII.30.45), (XIII.116.67).


Adi Parva, Mahabharata/Mahabharata Book I Chapter 177 mentions the Kshatriyas came on Swayamvara of Draupadi. Vrika is included in verse (I.177.9). [26]


Udyoga Parva/Mahabharata Book V Chapter 31 mentions that Pandavas were desirous of peace and demanded only five villages: Kushasthala, Vrikasthala, Asandi, Varanavata, and for the fifth any other village to end the quarrel. [27]


Karna Parva/Mahabharata Book VIII Chapter 30 mentions this tribe in derogatory sense as a bias for many clans of Vahika country: "The Karasakaras, the Mahishakas, the Kalingas, the Kikatas, the Atavis, the Karkotakas, the Virakas, and other peoples of no religion, one should always avoid." [28]


Anusasana Parva/Book XIII Chapter 116 gives List of Kings who had abstained from flesh in Karttika month. Vrika is included in verse (XIII.116.67)....These other kings also, viz., Syenachitra, and Somaka and Vrika and Raivata and Rantideva and Vasu and Srinjaya,....did not eat flesh for the month of Karttika." [29]

Distribution in Punjab

Villages in Sheikhupura district

In the present day, Virk live in Sheikhupura, a district in Punjab. Birk population is 3,600 in Patiala district.[30]

Villages in Jalandhar district

According to B S Dhillon the population of Virk clan in Jalandhar district is 3,150.[31]

Villages in Amritsar district

Virk population is 2,037 in Amritsar district.[32] In Firozpur district the Virk population is 1,500. [33]

Sathiala,

Villages in Bhatinda district

Virk Kalan, Virk Khurd, Warkandi,

Villages in Fazilka district

Virak Khurd,

Villages in Firozpur district

Wirkanwali,

Villages in Gurdaspur district

Virk named village is in Gurdaspur tahsil of Gurdaspur district in Punjab, India.

Villages in Ludhiana district

Villages in Muktsar district

Virk Khera

Distribution in Rajasthan

Villages in Sikar district

Birk Ki Dhani, Dhani Birkhan, Hardayalpura, Katrathal, Mandiwal Ki Dhani, Sikar, Singhasan,

Villages in Churu district

Chhapar Churu (1),

Locations in Jaipur city

Ambabari, Jhotwara,

Villages in Jhunjhunu district

Mukandgarh,

Villages in Hanumangarh district

Birkali

Distribution in Haryana

Villages in Karnal district

In India, Virks are mainly concentrated in the Karnal district of Haryana. Prominent Virk families are concentrated in villages around Tehsil Assandh, District Karnal, and a few are temporarily living in Patiala District.

Villages in Kurukshetra district

Kurukshetra,

Distribution in Pakistan

Virk - In Punjab (Pakistan), a majority of Virks live in the Sheikhupura district and some are scattered in Sialkot District. There is a small village in Sialkot known as Virk, inhabited by Virk Jats. Virks still control the city of Sheikhupura (the ancient Virkgarh), both politically and economically.

According to 1911 census the Virk were the principal Muslim Jat clan in districts:

Notable persons of this gotra

  • Jeet Singh Virk, 15-5-1962 IFS Maharashtra, 1987
  • Komila Virk - Hindi film actress of Seventies.
  • Sharif Virk (I.G.NWFP Police) (Police Service of Pakistan)
  • Anwar Virk (D.I.G Police Sheikhupura)
  • Davendra Singh of Ghanauli, Virk - Jat, From Ambala district was in the List of Punjab Chiefs.

See also

References

  1. B S Dahiya:Jats the Ancient Rulers (A clan study), p.244, s.n.242
  2. Jat History Dalip Singh Ahlawat/Parishisht-I, s.n. व-24
  3. O.S.Tugania:Jat Samuday ke Pramukh Adhar Bindu, p.50, s.n. 1637
  4. O.S.Tugania:Jat Samuday ke Pramukh Adhar Bindu, p.52, s.n. 1779
  5. Jat History Dalip Singh Ahlawat/Parishisht-I, s.n. व-24
  6. O.S.Tugania:Jat Samuday ke Pramukh Adhar Bindu, p.50, s.n. 1637
  7. V. S. Agrawala: India as Known to Panini, 1953, p.443-444
  8. V. S. Agrawala: India as Known to Panini, 1953, p.443-444
  9. V. S. Agrawala: India as Known to Panini, 1953, p.65
  10. Aitihasik Sthanavali,p.869
  11. कुशस्थलं वृकस्थलम आसन्दी वारणावतम, अवसानं भवेथ अत्र किं चिथ एव तु पञ्चमम Mahabharata (V.31.19)
  12. V. S. Agrawala: India as Known to Panini, 1953, p.467
  13. Ram Swarup Joon: History of the Jats/Chapter II,p. 32-33
  14. Ram Swarup Joon: History of the Jats/Chapter V, p. 107-108
  15. Jats the Ancient Rulers (A clan study)/Jat Clan in India,p. 277-278
  16. ibid , p. 251
  17. ibid. bk. VII. ch . 62
  18. Political and Social Movements in Ancient Punjab by Buddha Prakash, p. 102
  19. Journal of Bihar and Orissa Research Society, Vol, XVI, p. 258
  20. Jats the Ancient Rulers (A clan study)/The Antiquity of the Jats,p.300-301
  21. जाट वीरों का इतिहास: दलीप सिंह अहलावत, पृष्ठ.343-344
  22. राजा उतु-खेगल विर्क ने अपने देश में चन्द्रमा एवं सूर्य देवता के अनेक मन्दिर बनवाये थे।
  23. जाट्स दी ऐन्शन्ट रूलर्ज, पृ० 90 लेखक बी० एस० दहिया।
  24. जाट्स दी ऐन्शन्ट रूलर्ज, पृ० 157-158 लेखक बी० एस० दहिया।
  25. Dr Ompal Singh Tugania: Jat Samuday ke Pramukh Adhar Bindu, p. 21
  26. अभिभूः सह पुत्रेण सुदाम्ना च सुवर्चसा, सुमित्रः सुकुमारश च वृकः सत्यधृतिस तथा (I.177.9)
  27. कुशस्थलं वृकस्थलम आसन्दी वारणावतम, अवसानं भवेथ अत्र किं चिथ एव तु पञ्चमम Mahabharata (V.31.19)
  28. कारः करान महिषकान कलिङ्गान कीकटाटवीन । कर्कॊटकान वीरकांश च दुर्धर्मांश च विवर्जयेत Mahabharata (VIII.30.45)
  29. शयेनचित्रेण राजेन्द्र सॊमकेन वृकेण च, रैवतेन रन्ति देवेन वसुना सृञ्जयेन च (XIII.116.67)
  30. History and study of the Jats, B.S Dhillon, p.126
  31. History and study of the Jats, B.S Dhillon, p. 127
  32. History and study of the Jats, B.S Dhillon, p.124
  33. History and study of the Jats, B.S Dhillon, p. 127
  34. Ministry Of Home Affairs (Public Section), Padma Awards Directory (1954-2013), Year-Wise List
  35. Ministry Of Home Affairs (Public Section), Padma Awards Directory (1954-2013), Year-Wise List

Further reading


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