Wairsi

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Wairsi (वैरसी)[1] or Vairsi is a Muslim Jat clan found in Pakistan.

History

Bhim Singh Dahiya writes that tribes, Wairsi (Waraich) and Bhattis and Sodha are even now existing. The Wairsi are a purely Jat clan.[2]

H.A. Rose[3] writes that the Gils worship their eponym on the Chet Chaudas at Rajiana, in Moga tahsil, where he has a temple. He also appears to be called Raja Pir and to be specially affected by the Wairsi Gils.

H. W. Bellew[4] writes that The Waziri who displaced the Khattak, or Shattak, as it is pronounced in the western dialect of Pushtu, from his ancient seat on the Suleman range, from the Sattagydia of Herodotus, for he is the only one of the ancient authors who has mentioned this people, appear to be identical with the Wairsi or Vairsi of the early Muhammadan historians. The Wairsi were a division of the Sodha tribe, which itself was a branch of the Pramara Rajput. The Waziri appear to have made their first assaults against the Khattak about five or six hundred years ago at a time when the country was sorely afflicted with famine; and the route they took was across the Sham plain into the adjoining valley and district of Barmal. Here they settled and remained for some time before making a further forward move. In Barmal is the favourite shrine of an ancestral and saintly chief of the tribe, and here also are the lands of one of the tribal sub-divisions named Sodhaki. From their settlement in Barmal, the Waziri advanced by degrees, and in a long course of years, driving the Khattak before them, and subjugating the Chamkani, took the whole of the ancient Khattak country from the Sham plain on the south, to the Kohat valley in the north.

The Wairsi and Sodha Tribes

Sir H. M. Elliot[5] writes:

[p.531]: Wairsí, we are told in the Beg-Lar-náma (MS. p. 55), was a chief among the Sodhas. It would have been more correct to say that Wairsí was the chief clan among the Sodhas; for Wairsí was not a personal designation, as is evident from many passages of that work. It is written indiscriminately Wairsí and Wairsa, and a cognate, but then hostile, clan bore the closely similar name of Waisa (MS. pp. 190, 191). The Sameja tribe, often mentioned in the same work, is also a branch of the Sodhas. An exact translation of the text to which this note refers would represent Rájia as the daughter of the Ráná (which, by the way, is spelt throughout in the original as Ra'ná); but at p. 61 we learn that she was his sister's son, and so she is also styled in the Tuhfatu-l Kirám (MS. p. 73). Indeed, had she been his own daughter, we should not have found Abú-l Kásim Khán-i Zamán, who was the issue of the marriage with Mír Kásim Beg-Lár, passing his childhood among the Bhattís of Jesalmír after his father's death, but rather among the Sodhas of 'Umarkot.

The Soda or Sodha tribe (spelt Soda by Col. Tod, and Sodá by the Rev. Mr. Renouard) is an offshoot of the Pramara, and has been for many centuries an occupant of the desert tracts of Western India, into which they have receded, like their predecessors, when driven forward by more powerful neighbours from the banks of the Indus. Col. Tod contends that they are the descendants of the Sogdi of Alexander's time, in which there is greater probability than in most of his speculations. Sogdi may be a corruption, derived from the greater familiarity of historians with the northern nation of that name. The Sodræ of Diodorus offers an equal resemblance of name and position. It is not plain which bank of the river the Sodræ or Sogdi then occupied. They are not mentioned by Q. Curtius, and Arrian's use of "right" and "left," as applied to the banks of the Indus, is so opposed to the modern practice of tracing a river from its source downwards, that it adds to the confusion.


[p.532]: The transaction mentioned in the text shows the early period at which the Hindús began to disgrace themselves by their intermarriages with Muhammadans; and the high repute of the beauty of the Sodha women has served to maintain that practice in full vigour to the present time.

At the period treated of, we find the Sodhas in possession of 'Umarkot, of which the name and consequence have been subsequently much increased, independant of its importance as a border fortress, by being the birth place of the renowned Akbar.

The Ráná of the Sodhas was expelled from 'Umarkot by the Tálpúrs of Sind; and the present representative of the family, who still retains his title of Ráná, resides at Chor, a few miles north-east of his former capital, shorn of all power, and hard pressed for the means of subsistence.*

Distribution in Pakistan

Notable persons

References

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