Panwar / Parmar Rajput population According to the 1901 Census of Punjab

The Panwar, sometimes pronounced as Parmar or even Puar were the third largest Rajput tribe in the Punjab. The eastern Panwar, who numbered around 33,553, or 50% of the total population were like the Chauhans, a tribe of Ranghar pastoralists, concentrated in Haryana. A second group, who numbered 19,689, about 30% of the population were concentrated in south west Punjab, especially in Bahawalpur State, and the neighbouring areas of Multan, Muzaffargarh, Dera Ghazi Khan, Mianwali and Firuzpur in present East Punjab. These Panwar, many of whom considered themselves to be Jats, were Seraiki speaking farmers. In between these groups were the Sikh Panwars of the Rechna Doaba, Muslims Panwars of Lahore, Jalandhar and Ludhiana, the Mahton Panwars of the same region, and the Panwar Rajputs of the Pabbi Hills in the Jhelum/Gujrat region. It is worth pointing that several West Punjabi tribes such as the Bangial, Hon, Sohlan, Narma, Dhudhi, Mekan and Tiwana claim to be descended from the Panwar Rajputs. They are now fairly distinct from the parent tribe, and were recorded seperately.

District / States

Muslim

Hindu

Sikh

Total

Rohtak

 13,931

 2,785

   16,716

Bahawalpur State

 9,845

 348

 223

 10,416

Hissar

 6,165

 1,240

 7,405

Firuzpur

 5,453  157  69  5,679

Multan

 5,445

 221

 

 5,666

Jind State

769

 

 2,839

 

 3,608

Karnal

2,009

 288

 11  2,308

Patiala State

1,353

 180

 157

1,690

 

Montgomery

 1,451  24 1,475

 

Ludhiana

1,392

 

63

1,455

Lahore 1,212 23 220 1,455
Gurgaon 920 355 1,275
Muzaffargarh 695
62 100 857
Dera Ghazi Khan 849   849
Jhelum 649 649
Chenab Colony 295 29 205 529
Jalandhar 425 18 443
Mianwali 426 426
Dehli 135 272 407
Gujranwala 16  380 396
Sialkot 278 74 352
Ambala 242 57 299
Rawalpindi 157 157
Dujana State 104 40 144
Shahpur 48  83 131
Gurdaspur 127 127
Gujrat 111 111
Hoshiarpur 108 108

Other Districts

 

 

 

Total

55,067

9,309

1,614

65,990

Narma and Sohlan Rajput

In this post, I look at two related tribes, the Narma and Sohlan. Both are branches of the famous Parmar Rajputs, who ruled much of central India, from their capital at Ujjain. Once the Parmar state was destroyed, groups of Parmar migrated to different parts of India, including the foothills of the Pir Panjaal.

Narma

Starting off with the Narma, they are a clan of Paharia Rajputs, whose territory extends from Mirpur and Kotli in Azad Kashmir to Gujrat and Rawalpindi in Punjab. According to tribal traditions, they are Agnikula Rajputs descendant of Raja Karan. This Raja Karan was said to be from Ujjain or Kathiawar, although the Thathaal tradition is he was the ruler of Thanesar in Haryana. My post on the Nonari also explores this mysterious figure found among the traditions of many Punjab tribes. The Narma, therefore are Panwar Rajputs, who ruled Malwa and Ujjain, their famous kings names were Raja Bikramjeet and Raja Bahoj. During the invasions of Mahmood of Ghaznai the Narma were said to be living in the Haryana. Naru Khan 8th descent of Raja Karan accepted Islam and the tribe were named after him; Naru or Narma Rajputs. They were land owner of several villages within Haryana; the chief men of this tribe were known by the title Rai, and this title is still used by their descendants presently. Most Narma Rajputs have accepted Islam, although some remain Hindu. The Panwars are said to have thirty four branches, named after places, titles, language and person’s names like Omtawaar were known as the descendants of Omta, similarly the descendants of Naru became Naruma and then Narma.

 

Naru and Narma

There might be a common ancestory between Naru and Narma, they both claim their ancestor name was Naru, who accepted Islam and given new name Naru Khan during the invasion of Mahmood of Ghazna, and he lived in Haryana area. However, the Narma claim that they are of Panwar Rajput ancestry, while Naru origin stories make reference to Chandravanshi origin (Please see my article on the Pothohar tribes on Rajput sub-divisions). Coming back to the Narma, their origin myth refers to a Rai Pahre Khan, seven generations from Naru Khan who came from Kaithal in Haryana to what is now Jhelum district and founded two villages Fatehpur and Puran. A descendent of Pahre Khan, Rai Jalal Khan relocated to Senyah. As a tribe, the Narma are distributed over a large territory with Gujrat in the east, Rawalpindi in the west, and Mirpur and Poonch in the north, with Panjan in Azad Kashmir being a centre of the tribe.

Clans

The Narmas in Gujrat say that they have nine clans which are as follows:

1. Sadrya

2. Adryal

3. Sambrhyal

4. Haudali

5. Jalali

6. Alimyana

7. Joyal

8. Umrali

9. Hassanabdalia.

Narma Rajputs in Indian administered Kashmir

In India administered Kashmir, they are found mainly in villages near Naushehra in Rajauri District. There main villages include Jamola and Gurdal Paine.

Narma Rajput in Azad Kashmir

Important Narma villages in Azad Kashmir include Khoi Ratta, Narma, Panjan, Dhargutti, Palal Rajgan, Panjpir, Prayi, Charohi, Rasani, Sabazkot, Sanghal, Senyah, and Tain all in Kotli District.

In Bagh District, their villages include Sirawera, Dhoomkot. Kaffulgarh, Ghaniabad, Bees Bagla, Sarmundle, Mandri, Bhutti, Nikkikair, Awera, Dhundar, Cheran, Makhdomkot, Chattar, Adyala Paddar, Lober, and Patrata.

While in Bhimber District, they are found in the villages of Haripur (Samani Tehsil), Jhangar (Bhimber Tehsil), Makri Bohani (Bhimber Tehsil), Broh (Bhimber Tehsil), Khamba (Bhimber Tehsil), Thandar (Bhimber Tehsil), Siyala (Bhimber Tehsil), Garhone (Bhimber Tehsil), and Chadhroon (Bhimber Tehsil).

Narma Rajput in Punjab

In Punjab, they are found in the districts of Gujrat, Jhelum and Rawalpindi. The villages of Puran and Fatehpur in Jhelum District are said to be their earliest settlements. In Rawalpindi, they are found in Jocha Mamdot ,Sood Badhana and Narmatokh Kangar villages.

Sohlan

Sohlan is said to have emigrated from Malwa in the middle ages, settling in the foothills of the Pir Panjal mountains, and converting to Islam. The Sohlan established a principality based on the town of the Khari Sharif and during the time of the Delhi Sultanate and the Mughals the reigning authorities never levied taxes in the Solhan ruled areas, in lieu of peaceful passage to Kabul. There are however other traditions which connect the Sohlan clan with the royal family from Kishtawar; with Raja Sohlan Singh quarrelling with his relations and settling in Khari, and expelling the Gujjar population. Legend also has it that Mangla Devi an ancestor of the tribe and after whom Mangla is named after was the first person from the tribe to convert to Islam. This site has now been inundated by the construction of the Mangla Dam in Mirpur District. After the collapse of the Mughal Empire, the Sohlan areas came under the rule of the Sikhs. This rule lasted until 1846 when Sohlan inhabited areas north of the Jhelum river were handed over to the Gulab Singh Dogra in an agreement with the British as part of the Treaty of Amritsar. As result of this treaty, Sohlan territory was effectively partitioned, with Sohlan south of the Jhelum coming under direct British areas, in what became the district of Jhelum and sub-district of Gujar Khan. Despite this separation, both the Chibhal territory of Jammu State and British Pothohar continued to share common cultural traditions, with minor dialectial differences between Pothwari and Pahari languages.

 

Presently, the Sohlan are found chiefly in the Mirpur District of Azad Kashmir, with small numbers found in Jhelum, Gujar Khan, and Rawalpindi.

Starting with Mirpur District, their villages include Bani (Mirpur), Dalyala, Ghaseetpur Sohalian, Koonjarai Nawab, Mehmunpur, and Sahang. Sohlan villages in Mirpur are located mainly around the town of Khari Sharif which has historically been ruled by this clan. Since the development of the Mangla Dam, old Jabot Village, which was also an important Sohlan village was submerged underwater causing many families to move to Khari Sharif, and establishing the village of New Jabot. The Sohlan village in Jhelum District are located north of the city of Jhelum near the border with Mirpur, the principal settlement being Sohan. Other villages include Gatyali or Patan Gatalyan, Chak Khasa, Pakhwal Rajgan, Chitti Rajgan, Pind Ratwal Tahlianwala, Dhok Sohlnan, Piraghaib and Langerpur. They are closely connected to with both the Bhao and Chibs, who are their neighbours, and with whom they share good many customs and traditions. Outside this core area, Sohlan villages include Sahang and Dhok Sohlan in Tehsil Gujar Khan district, Morah Sohlan, Pehount in the Islamabad Capital Territory and Naar Mandho in Kotli District.

Hattar, Lak, Nagyana and Tatri tribes

In this post, I shall look at three clans that are found in uplands of the Chenab and Jhelum Doaba (land in between). All four clans, namely the Hattar, Lak, Nagyana and Tatri were once semi-nomadic pastoralists, that inhabited the Kirana Bar or at least the Jech Doab, the land between Jhelum and Chenab river. Kirana Bar is a portion of the Chej Doáb, it takes its name from the Kirana Hills found here. This region is now divided between the Sargodha and Jhang districts. Bar stands for an area of jungle as it was before colonisation by the British Government. This area starts from the northwest of Hissár country near the bank of river Chenab with an abrupt high ridge and this high bank of bar dies away a little distance east of the boundary of between the Chiniot and Jhang tehsils, opposite the village of Kot Mohla. The lands of the Kirana Bár to the east and south of the hills are of superb quality. After slight showers of rain, the whole country is carpeted with grass. This meant that pastoralism was the best form of lifestyles. The Lak and Nagyana had huge herds of cattle. Like the Thal tribes discussed in earlier posts, the Kirana nomads were practically independent until the coming of the Sikhs. Other then the Baloch of Sahiwal (in Sargodha), the region did not know any princely authority. Real change came with the British, who began last scale colonization, bringing in settlers from central Punjab. The Tatri were the first two be settled, followed by the Lak and Nagyana. The Nagyana difers from the other Bar Jats in that they have always been seen as sacred, with many pirs coming from the tribe.

Hattar

I shall start of by looking at the Hattar, a tribe found through out north-west Punjab. Before I start, as far as I know the Hattar have no connection with the Khattar tribe. According to their owntraditions, the tribe claims descent from a Bhatti Rajput nobleman named Rana Rajwadhan. The Rana lived in Ghazni, in what is now Afghanistan and then moved to Delhi in India. After sometime, he moved to Bhatner (now known as Hanumangarh) in what is now northern Rajasthan. In the 13th Century, the Rana and his family are said to have moved to Chanb Kalyar, in what is now the Lodhran District, in Punjab. The ruler of the area was a Raja Bhutta. The Raja wanted to marry the daughter of Rajwadhan, who refused. As a result a battle took place, and the Raja was slain. The tract was then divided between Rajwadhan, and his five sons, Kalyar, Utera, Kanju, Noon and Hattar. All these are names of fairly well known tribes of south Punjab, and have much in common with tribes referred to my first post, such as the Aheer, being largely nomadic and pastoral.

Coming now back to the Hattars, the descendents of Hattar are said to have converted to Islam and left the Multan region, and moved to northwest Punjab, where they are a now found as a Rajput tribe. Therefore, they are a clan of Bhatti Rajputs, although some Hattar groups in Sargodha refer to themselves as Jats. The Hattar are now found in the districts of Sargodha, Khushab, Jhelum, Gujrat, Chakwal, and Attock. Starting off with Attock, the Hattar are found in a single village by the name of Hattar., while in neighbouring Chakwal, their villages include Hattar, Dhudial, Fim Kasar, Jhallay, Jethal and Assami Hattar, while in Pind Dadan Khan Tehsil, their main villages are Dhok Hattar and Hattar. And finally in Gujrat District, Hattar is their main village. It is however Sargodha District and in particular in Bhalwal Tehsil, that the bulk of the Hattars are found. Important villages iin that tehsil include Chak numbers 15 and 16NB, Jalpana and Pindi Hattar, while in Shahpur Tehsil of Sargodha, their villages are Deowal, Ghurtala, Kakewala, Khurshid and Rawal. Across the Jhelum in Khushab, they are found in Pillow Waince.

Lak
The Lak claim descent from the Parmara (Panwar) Rajputs, and were originally found alongs the banks of the Chenab river, but were ousted by the Sikhs in the 18th Century from this region. Their ancestor was Lak, who like most Panwar Rajputs is said to have left Malwa in central India, arrived in Punjab, and converted to Islam. They are now found mainly in Sargodha District, with few communities in Faisalabad, Mandi Bahauddin Sahiwal and Multan Districts. Most Lak villages are located between Malakwal and Sargodha, with Burj Ghulam Rasool, Mari Lak, Sakesar and Mitha Lak being the most important. In neighbouring Mandi Bahauddin district, they are found in the villages of Bosaal Masoor, Lak, Thakkar Kalan, and Pind Makko. In neighbouring Jhelum District, they are found in the village of Pir Khara, while in Khushab District they are found in Khaliqabad.

Nagyana

Lastly, I look at the Nagyana, who are closely affiliated with the Lak, which I have looked at in an another post. Although they claim Arab descent from a Nag, hence Nag aana, the sons of Nag, this name does suggest that they may be of Hindu descent. Interestingly, in the Pothohar region, the Nagyal are also literally the children of Nag, but these Nag descendants claim to be Minhas Rajputs. The tribe is extremely localized, found in villages, such as Dharema and Masar,  near the town of Shahpur in Sargodha District. Historically they had a sacred status among their neighbours the Harrals and Laks, providing many pirs or holymen.

Tatri

The Tatri are Jats, which customs similar to the tribes already described. They claim descent from Tatri, who is said to be a Bhatti Rajput. As with the traditions of many other Jat clans in Sargodha region, by marrying into the Jat community, they too became Jat. In Bhalwal, the Tatri occupied seven villages, maintaining their independence until the arrival of the Sikh. In Bhalwal, they are still found mainly in Lariala, Nothain, Jahanewala, Dhakwan, and Tatrian. Outside Bhalwal, a few Tatri are also found in Mandi Bahauddin District such in village Sanda.

 

Bohar, Chachar, Chhajra and Parhar tribes

In this post I will look at four tribes, namely the Bohar, Chachar, Chhajra and Parhar, whose territory stretches from Sargodha in the north to Bahawalpur. In terms of distribution, all four of these tribes have a substantial presence in Sindh as well, but in this blog I will only look at their position in Punjab. Three of these tribes, namely the Bohar, Chhajra and Parhar have traditions of migrating from Rajasthan, and settling in Bahawalpur. The Bohar still have a substantial presence in the Cholistan region, where they are still nomadic.

Bohar

The Bohar are a tribe of Jat status, with quite a few still found as nimads in the Cholistan desert. According to their tribal traditions, the Bohar claim descent from Bohar a Panwar Rajput, who is said to have converted to Islam by the famous Sufi saint Syed Jalal of Uch Sharif. The Bohar were involved in conflict with the Naich, another Jat tribe, and the Sayyid tried to stop the conflict, by asking the two tribes to intermarry. While the Bohar agreed, the Naich refused, and killed their Bohar son-in-laws. As such, the Bohar dispersed into the Cholistan and Jaisalmer deserts, where many are still nomadic. However, the Bohar of Sargodha, Multan and Dera Ghazi Khan are settled farmers, no different from the other Jat tribes of the region.

 

Bohar Villages

In Hasilpur, they are found in Bohar Wali Gali.

In Lodhran District found in the village of Basti Gareban near the town of Kehror Paka

In Dera Ghazi Khan District, Bohar villages include Basti Shah Ali Bohar, Wah Bohar and Bohar.

In Rajanpur District, their main village is Basti Bohar.

In Okara District, Boharwala is their main village.

In Pakpattan District, Bohar is their main village.

In Multan District their main villages are Bohar Lodhran and Bohar.

In Vehari District, their main village is Bohar.

In Rajanpur,their main village is Basti Bohar

Chachar

Chachar are Jat clan found in Sindh, Punjab, and Balochistan. Like most tribes of the Indus plain, they are a number of traditions as to their origin, which are often contradictory. Among the Bahawalpur Chachar, a strong claim is made to Barlas Mughal ancestry. In this tradition, Chachar is a prince, who is a descendent of Timur or Tamerlane. However, the Chachar of Ghotki have traditions that they are Abbasi Arabs, descendents of the Prophet’s uncle Abbas ibn Abdul Mutalib. It interesting to note, that in the Ghotki Sukkur region of Sindh, several tribes such as the Kalhoras and Daudpotas have tradition of Abbasi descent. Despite these claims to Arab or Mughal ancestry, the Chachar are considered by their neighbours and themselves as Jats, and intermarry with tribes of Jat status. In Bahawalpur, the Chachars have several septs : — Raj-de, the highest in status ; Rahmani, whose ancestors were khalifas of Ghaus Baha-ud-Din Zakariya : hence they are also called Shaikh-Rahmani, and some sanctity still attaches to the sept ; Narang, Jugana, Jhunjha, Chhutta, Gureja, Rukana, Kalra, Mudda, Duwani, Dohija, Gabrani, Muria, Kharyani and Zakriani or followers of Ghaus Baha-ud-Din Zakariya.

In Punjab they are found in Sargodha, Multan, Bahawalpur, Rahim Yar Khan, Okara and Lodhran districts, with Basirpur in Okara District being an important village of this tribe. In Sindh, the Chachars are foundi n Pano Aqil, Ghotki, Sukkur and Kashmore districts. Gamero, Haji Khan Chachar, Essa chachar, Dari and Yusuf Chachar are some Chachar villages in Ghotki District.

 

Chhajra

The Chhajra are a Saraiki speaking Jat clan, and distinct from the Shajra clan, who I have looked at in another post. They claim descent from the Bhatti tribe of Jaisalmer. They came to Multan under Rao Kehar, a chieftain of Jaisalmer, and settled there. There are several individuals by the name of Kehar, who played an important role in Bhatti history. One such Kehar was a contemporary of the Caliph Walid, who is said to have extended the Bhati kingdom of Jaisalmer. Another, who is said to have ruled Jaisalmer in the 16th Century, and conquered all the country up the Indus. It is not clear, which Kehar is being referred to by the Chhajras, but their Bhati descent is accepted by the neighbouring tribes. However, the Chhajras seem unsure as to why Rao Kehar left Jaisalmer, other then the fact he somehow lost power.

In terms of distribution, the Chhajra are largely found in they are found mainly along the Indus, in Muzaffargarh, Rajanpur, Layyah and Multan districts. Important villages in that district include Bindah Ishaq Kallarwali, Manikwali, Sharif Chhajra, Bet Chhajra, Nuran Chhajra, Muslim Chhajra, qabul Chhajra Shumali, Qabul Chhajra Junubi, Bibipur Chhajra and Qadirpur Chhajra

In Layyah District, their main village is Chhajra.

In Multan District, their main village is Jhok Chhajra.

 

Parhar

The Parhar are a tribe of Jat status, with a very interesting background. They claim descent from the Parihar Rajputs. So exactly were these Parihar or Pratiharas Rajputs. They were a medieval Indian dynasty, descended from the Gurajara- Pratihara tribe, which said to have invaded India, in the 5th Century.The Parhar Jats, are all that remains of the Pratihara presence in the Punjab. They were forced to migrate from south-central Asia in 3-4th century AD due to the White Hun invasions. The Parhar Jat traditions are unclear as to whether the Parhar are survivors of the White Hun invaders, and latter migrants. In Bahawalpur, the Parhar have traditions of migration from Ajmer, and it does seem likely the present Parhar are latter migrants from Rajasthan. It is interesting to note that the nomadic Rath found in Bikaner have a sub-division called the Parhar. The Parhar seem to have migrated up the valleys of the Chenab and Jhelum, a large number are now found in Sargodha, Layyah and Bhakkar districts.

 

The Parhar are now found in Dera Ghazi Khan, Muzaffargarh, Jhang, Rajanpur and Sargodha districts of Punjab. Their main village in Dera Ghazi Khan District is Passo Parhar. In Muzaffargarh District, their main villages are Mohammed Parhar, Ghulam Parhar, Parhar Gharbi, and Parhar Sharqi. In Rajanpur Parhar villages include Mullawala, Nooraywala, and Chah Ladywala.

 

In Okara District, their main village is Parhar. In Sargodha District, their main villages are Adrehman, Chak No.17 NB,Chak No 1NB Gakhra, Ganula Sharif and Ratto Kala..

Jhammat, Mekan, Talokar and Tulla tribes

In this post, I shall look at four tribes, whose home is the Chaj Doab, the land between the Chenab and Jhelum rivers, who are all of Jat status. They are all Bar nomads, practising pastoralism, until the arrival of the British in the 19th Century. My post on the Chadhar looks into some detail on the customs and traditions of the Bar nomads. In terms of origin, the Jhammat , Mekan and Talokar are Panwar Rajputs, with traditions of migration from Malwa in central India. Finally, the Tulla are essentialy a clan of the Gondals, but are now practically independent of the parent tribe.

 

Jhammat

I shall start off with the Jhammat, who are found throughout on the edges of Thal, with large concentrations in Bhakkar, Sargodha and Khushab districts. They are in essence Jhammat a tribe of the Bar, living a nomadic existence. Scattered settlements of the Jhammat are now found in an area extending from Jhelum District in the north to Bahawalpur District. Like their neighbours the Mekan, the Jhammat are by origin Panwar Rajputs, with their ancestor Jhammat having left Malwa in what is now Madhya Pradesh in India sometimes in the early 12th Century, arriving in the Punjab, and like their neighbours the Mekan, having converted to Islam at hands of the famous Sufi Baba Farid.

There settlements are now found mainly along the valley of the Jhelum River, with the bulk of the Jhammats found in Chakwal, Jhelum, Sargodha, Khushab and Bhakker districts.

 Villages

Bhakkar District

1) Cheena,

2) Jhammat 

3) Nabuwala

4) Wadhaywala

5) Waheer

Chakwal District

1) Alawal 

2) Sidher

Jhelum District

1) Chak Jalo

2) Chak Mujahid

3) Dewanpur

4) Khai Kotli,

5) Nakodar,

6) Sahow Chak,

7) Peraghaib

8) Pinnanwal

Sargodha District

1) Bunga Jhammat,

2) Bunga Jhammatawala

4)Jhammat Ranjhewala,

5) Jhammat

6) Shaikhwal

7) Verowal

8) Mangowal Kalan

Other Districts

Other Jhammat villages include Jhammat in Attock District, Jhammat Teli in Rawalpindi District, Jhammatabad and Jhammat Nauabad in Gujrat District,  Chak 232 JB in Jhang District and Jhatwan in Sheikhupura.

 

Mekan

Our next tribe, the Meken, sometimes also spelt Maikan or even Meikan, are a tribe of Jat status. They claim descent from the Panwar (Parmar) Rajputs, and spring from the same ancestor as the Dhudhi tribe. The tribe claims to have settled in the Thal, after the end of Arab rule in Sindh, when the Hindu king of Kanauj, a Parmar Rajput took possession of the Thal region, and settled his kinsmen, the Mekan. They then established a state based in the town of Mankera, now in Bhakkar District, which covered much of the Thal, and lasted for five hundred years, until the state was destroyed by invading Baloch. According to one of their traditions, the Mankera state was founded by a Raja Singh, who belonged to the royal house of Kannauj, and said to have accepted Islam during the time of the Sultan of Delhi, Ghias-ud-din Balban, courtesy of Baba Farid Ganj Shakr. Towards the end of the fifteenth century, the Baloch from Makran flocked into the country in and around Mankera, and subsequently ruled this state for the next three hundred years. The Mekans that settled in the Kirana Bar, and became pastoralist, like the other tribes of the Bar. They, occupied a copact territory in the Kirana Bar, lying to the west of Gondal territory, although a smaller number are also in Jhelum and Gujrat districts. There present territory now forms part of Sargodha, Khushab,and Mianwali districts, although as already mentioned, there are smaller broken settlements in Jhelum, Gujrat, and Mandi Bahauddin districts. In Pothohar, in Jhelum / Chakwal region, the Mekan form an important tribal community.

The Mekans form the majority of the population in Kot Bhai.Khan union council of Sargodha. Their villages in Sargodha District include Behak Maken, said to have been first village founded by the Mekans when they moved to the Bar , Abu Wala, Chakrala, Deowal, Gondal (Shahpur Tehsil), Mochiwal, Okhli Mohla, Sultanpur Meknawala, Jalpana, Dera Karam Ali Wala, Chak No 88 N.B,Chak No 142 N.B, Nihang Chak 71 NB Chak 74 NB, Chak 10 N.B,  Chabba Purana, Faiz Sultan Colony in Shahpur Tehsil, Kot Bhai Khan, Kot Pehlwan, Aqal Shah, Kot Kamboh, Wadhi, Kot Shada, Gul Muhammad Wala and Verowal in Bhera Tehsil and Sher Muhamadwala in Bhalwal Tehsil. Accross the Jhelum, Mekan are also found in Mohibpur village in Khushab District.

Outside this core areas, in Jhelum District, there most important villages are Chautala (Jhelum Tehsil) , Chak Mujahid (Pind Dadan Khan Tehsil) and Tobah (Pind Dadan Khan Tehsil), while in Chakwal District, important Mekan villages include Mangwal, Vero, Lakhwal, Thanil Kamal, Dingi Zer, Dhoke Dhabri (almost evenly divided between Gondal and Mekan), Chak Bhoun, Dhoke Maykan near Thoa Bahdur and Ghugh (which largely a Ghugh Jat villages, but home to several Mekan families). The Mekan Jats in terms of population form the most important Jat clan in Chakwal.

While in Gujrat District, they are found in village Mekan in Kharian Tehsil, and in neighbouring Mandi Bahaudin District, there main villages are Lassouri Kalan, Lassouri Khurd, Mekan and Thatti Bawa.

Talokar

The Talokar are another large an important Jat tribe of the Thal. Like the Jhammats, the Talokar claim to by descent Panwar Rajputs. According to their traditions, they are the related to Sial and Tiwana tribes. Supposedly all three tribes descend from three brothers, Tila, Sila and Taloka. Once again, like the Jhammat, the Talokar traditions state that they accepted Islam at the hands of the famous Sufi Baba Farid Shukar Gunj. The Talokars came from East Punjab in India, and first settled near Bhera in Sargodha District. Their first settlements were the villages were Kalara and Kurrar Talokar. From there, they spread to the east side of the Indus River, founding the villages of Bakharra (Kacha), Ding and Khola (Thal), in Mianwali District. Like the Niazi Pashtuns, who are their neighbours in Mianwali, the Talokar are subdivided in clans, referred to as khels. Important Talokar khels in Mianwali include the Lato Khel,Shahbaz Khel,Baqir Khel,Yaroo Khel, and Rangay Khel

Important Talokar villages include Talokar, Talokar Shumali, Talokar Jannubi and Chak Talokaranwala and a good many other villages near the town of Noor Pur Thal in Khushab District. A small number of Talokar are also found in Bandial village near the border with Mianwali District. In Mianwali itself, there villages include Ding Khola Talokar (New Ding Sharif, Saeed Abad (Sharqi and Gharbi), Lal Khelan wala, Zaman Kelan wala, Hashim Naggar, Tahir Abad, Shahbaz Khelanwala and Khanqah Sirrajia.

Tulla

The last tribe I will look at in this post are the Tulla, who are much more localized then the tribes discussed. They are a classic Chaj Doaba Jat, raising cattle, and leading a nomadic lifestyles until the arrival of the British.

According to their traditions, they are, in fact, a sept of the Gondal Jat tribe. They say, their ancestor being childless vowed that if he had a son he would give his weight in gold and silver to the poor. His son was so weighed and was give the nickname Tula, from the Punjabi word tolna, which, means to weigh. However, the Tulla are now independent of the Gondals, being considered a distinct tribe.
Their villages are found mainly in the Shahpur Tehsil of Sargodha District, such as Jahanabad, Mahmud Tulla and Jalpana. Other important Tulla villages is Miana Kooh in Mandi Bahaudin district.

Harral, Marral, Wagha and Waseer tribes

In this post, I shall look at tribes that have their historic home in South Punjab. All are or were speakers of Seraiki, although the Wagha and Waseer, surrounded as they are by Punjabi settlers, now speak Punjabi. All also have traditions of migration from India, with the Harral claiming Panwar, Marral claiming a Chauhan origin, and Wagha and Waseer also claiming to be Panwar. I would ask the reader to make reference to my earlier postings on the Chadhars to get a background on the Bar nomads.

Harral

The Harals, or sometimes spelt Harral, are fairly substantial tribe, found in a block of settlements along the Chenab in Chiniot and Sargodha districts. They were at one point entirely pastoral, with groups nomadizing the Kirana and Sandal Bar. Like all Bar nomads, they were settled forcefully by the British colonial authorities in the late 19th Century.

There have a number of traditions as to their origin. According to one such tradition, the Haral are descended from Rai Bhupa, a Panwar Rajput, who incidently also appears in the origin myths of the Kharals, who were the neighbours of the Harrals in the Sandal Bar. Rai Bhupa is said to have left Jaisalmeer in Rajasthan with his kinsmen, and arrived in Uch Sharif, and accepted Islam at hands Makhdum Jahanian. There original settlement was in Kamalia near Multan, from where they spread with the flocks to the valley of the Chenab. Another tradition makes them a clan of Ahirs, who left Rewari near Gurgaon, a stronghold of the Ahir tribe, and settled in the Sandal Bar. This would connect them with their neighbours, the Gilotars, who also have traditions of being an Ahir clan. Finally, in Sahiwal, there are also traditions that the Haral are a branch of the Bhutta Jats.

In 1931 census, conducted during British rule, the male population was recorded as 5,000, and they were found in the Sahiwal District, Jhang and the now defunct Shahpur districts.They are now considered as Jat, and intermarry with the Kharal, Lak and other Jats of the Bar.

In 1857, the Harral played a key role in the rebellion against British rule in the Punjab, for which they were punished severely. There land was seized from them, and opened to settlement of other tribes. Most now no longer speak the Jhangochi dialect of Punjabi, and have shifted to standard Punjabi. As far as I know, the Harral are entirely Muslim, I can found no record of Hindu or Sikh Harrals.

In the core Harral region, which now forms part of Jhang and Faisalabad district, there villages in the former include Bhaderiwala, Chund and Masuwala, Muradwala and Sarwala, while in the latter their villages include Muloani Harallan, Lakarwala, Mudoana Harallan and Khanuana Harallan. In Bhalwal Tehsil of Sargodha District, their villages include Chabba Purana, Chak 6 ML , Chowal and Moazamabad, in Kot Momin Tehsil they are found in Naseepur Khurd.In Bhakkar District, they are found in Chak 69 TDA Behal. Further north in Khushab District, they are found in Rahdari. While in neighbouring Mandi Bahauddin district, their villages include Bherowal, Kadher Gharbi, Lakhia and Mailu Kohna.

 

Harral of Chakwal and Jhelum

Outside their core aread, Harrals are also found in Bhakkar, Chakwal and Jhelum districts. These Harrals are left to have left Sahiwal about two hundred years ago and now reside in the villages of Bajwala, Jaitipur, Jalalpur Sharif, Kotal Kund, Khalaspur, Nakka Kalan and Nakka Khurd and Wagh, all in Jhelum District. While in neighbouring Chakwal District, they are found in Bhulay Ballay, Dhab Kalan, Dhok Hayat, Kaal near Panjdhera, Ladwa and Ratwal villages.

 

 

Marral / Maral

 

The Marral or Maral are large found mainly in south Punjab. They are considered to be of Jat status. According to their traditions, the tribe claims descent from a Marral. This Marral was a Chauhan Rajput who migrated from Delhi and settled in Sindh. He had three sons, but all his descendants are called Marrals. The etymology of the name according to some traditions is that a certain Chauhan was told by his astrologers that a boy would be born in a Chauhan family who would destroy his kingdom, so he ordered that all the children born to Chuahan families should be killed, but Maral’s mother concealed him in a drum, and so he was named Maral ( from the Sindhi marhna to muffle). In Jhang, the Marrals were at one time a substantial power, but there power was extinguished by the Chadhars. According some other traditions, they are a group of Chauhans that migrated from Panipat, in what is now Haryana in India to the banks of the Jhelum. But both traditions seem to suggest that there first place of settlement was Jhang, where after their overthrow, led to groups migrating to further south to Multan and Mizaffargarh.

 

As I refer at the start of this post, the Marral are found in south Punjab, mainly in Rajanpur, Rahim Yar Khan, Multan, Muzaffargarh and Jhang districts.Their villages in Rajanpur District include Jindo Marral and Phagan Marral. In Chiniot District, Marralwala, and Multan District, Khanpur Marral, Inyatpur Marral and Qasba Maral.

In Sindh, they are found in Kashmore and Ghotki districts. Rais Ahmed Bux Maral, Gaji Maral, Haji Alim Maral and Nihal Maral are important Marral villages in Sindh.

 

Wagha

The Wagha are also of Jat status. According to their traditions, they are of Panwar Rajput descent. They used to graze their cattle in the central Sandal Bar, under the Kharals. Unable to deal with the tributes to the Kharal, they moved into what is now Nankana Sahib District,and clashed with the Bhatti and Virk of the area. With the assistance of the Kharal of Chak Jhumra, they ejected the Bhattis, and became the main tribe of the northern portion of the Sandal Bar. Like other pastoral Jat tribes of the Bar, they lost most to the grazing land to the canal colony scheme begun by the British coloinial authorities.

 

They are now a settled agriculture clan found in Nankana Sahib District.

Waseer

 

Like the Wagha, the Waseer also claim to be of Panwar origin. The Waseer were a nomadic tribe found in the Sandal Bar region of Punjab, and according to their traditions, are of Panwar Rajput ancestry. They claim descent from Wasir, who was converted to Islam at the hands of the Sufi saint Hazrat Shah Chawali Mashaikh. The Wasir are said to be have immigrated to the Sandal Bar in the 18th Century, and pushed out the Bhattis and Sipras. Essentially pastoralist, they occupied territory that now forms part of Faisalabad city.

 

They are now found mainly in Faisalabad, Sahiwal, Okara, Multan and Vehari districts.

Waseer Villages:

Faisalabad District

Arkana Waseeraan,

Ameen Ke Waseer,

Chak 374 G.B

Chamyana Waseeran

Gujranwala District

Hardo Saharan

Gondalwala,

Nankana Sahib District

Waseer Pur

Pakka Dalla Waseeran, ,

Malianwali Waseeraan, Chak No 537 G.B

Kheppan Wala,

Kalliber,

Sheikhupura District

Chak No 538 G.B,

Jatri Waseer,

Okara District

Moza Qila Dewa Singh,

Moza Mancherian,

Moza Dharma Wala,

Moza Bhai Rao Khan

Moza Chorasta Mian Khan,

Moza Pasail,

Havaili Lakha,

Mouza Waseero Wala,

Toba Tek Singh District

Chak 442 JB Waryamwala

Chak Number: 715 G.B

Vehari District

Basti Chaker Waseer,

Basti Wali Khan Waseer,

Chak Number 96

Moza Mari Waseeran,

Karampur Waseeran,

Malpur Waseeran.

Sharaf Waseeran,

 

Akera, Chadhar, Gilotar, and Lali tribes

In this post, I shall be looking a bit south of the Pothohar plateau, and looking at some of the tribes that inhabit the valley of the Jhelum and Chenab rivers. Most claim to be of Jat status, however among the Chadhars and the Kalyars, there are sections which claim to be Rajput. While my first post dealt with tribes that inhabit the desert region of the Thal, this will focus on the tribes that lived in the river valleys and uplands, called the Bar in the various dialects of Punjabi. Most of the Bar now is agricultural land, being cleared in the nineteenth century for the canal irrigation, was a thick barren forest areas which covered parts of central Punjab. The soil of the Bar however was fertile, the plains have been made by the alluvium driven by rivers flowing from the Himalayas. The Bar is further divided into four regions: the Sandal Bar (the area between the Ravi and Chenab rivers), Kirana Bar (the area between the Chenab and Jhelum rivers), Neeli Bar (the area between the Ravi and Sutlej rivers) and Ganji Bar (the area between the Sutlej and dry river bed of the Hakra).

The tribes that I will look at reside mainly in the Kirana Bar region, although with canal colonization, much of their traditional territory is now home to a variety of settlers. Most of the Bar now forms part Chiniot, Jhang and Sargodha districts, Below is a list of tribes that were classified as Jat by 1911 Census of India in the Shahpur (now Sargodha) district:

 

Tribe Population
Gondal 28,623
Ranjha 7,536
Mekan 5,435
Khichi 5,288
Bhatti 4,211
Chadhar 4,001
Waraich 3,483
Lak 3,156
Johiya 2,844
Cheema 2,708
Sujal 2,594
Harral 2,110
Rehan 1,880
Sipra 1,763
Tarar 1,716
Bajwa 1,685
Dhudhi 1,405
Tulla 1,311
Chhina 1,299
Jhawari 1,092
Tatri 1,122
Ghumman 1,065
Khokhar 1,055
Khat 1,055
Talokar 966
Burana 935
Ves 913
Kalera 855
Sohal 810
Parhar 807
Baghoor 807
Dhako 799
Hanjra 790
Bhutta 753
Hattar 739
Jora 718
Kalyar 715
Sagoo 715
Bains 712
Noon 708
Dhal 691
Lali 684
Goraya 652
Langah 638
Kharal 633
Virk 626
Panjutha 596
Sandrana 577
Heer 553
Jarola 550
Marath 548
Nissowana 505
Sandhu 504

 

From the list we can see that the two larger tribes were the Gondal and Ranjha, but in Sargodha, we also begin to see the presence of the some of the better known Jat tribes of central Punjab, such as the Bajwa, Cheema and Sandhu. Many of these latter tribes were actually settlers brought in from Gujrat, Gujranwala and Sialkot districts. Incidentally, the Gondal and Ranjha are also found north of Salt Range in Jhelum district, and I hope to dedicate the later post on these tribes. Reference can also be made on my earlier post on the Hattar, Baghoor and Talokar tribes, with the former found mainly in the north of the Kirana Bar, and latter two in the Thal Desert portion of the old Shahpur District (made of the modern Khushab and Sargodha Districts). One more thing I wish to add, while in Pothohar the addition of the word aal signifies descent, in the Bar, the suffix added is aana. For example the Tiwana, looked in my first post, are the children of Teu, while the Nissowana are the children of Nisso and so on. This is especially seen among the clans of the Gondals, such as the Sandrana, sons of Sandra, Salmanas, sons of Salman and so forth.

In Jhang District (which included Chiniot), the following were the main Jat clans according to the 1911 Census of India:

 

Tribe Population
Khokhar 8,666
Harral 4,988
Chadhar 3,414
Sipra 3,092
Naul 2,136
Kharal 1,792
Johiya 1,721
Lali 1,640
Gilotar 1,497
Mahun 1,471
Lak 1,310
Gujjar 1,265
Rajoke 1,262
Hanjra 1,176
Noon 1,089
Kudhan 1,045
Thabal 1,019
Lana 1,011
Sahmal 994
Nonari 983
Maru 956
Hidan 914
Gondal 900
Marral 826
Awrah 814
Sattar 801
Kanwan 678
Kaloke 638
Ganda 637
Dhudhi 600
Mahra 597
Sial 595
Heer 584
Khichi 581
Gill 588
Juta 544
Kalasan 533

Some of these tribes listed separately are actually clans of the Chadhar, such as the Thabal, Kaloke and Rajoke, while the Sial were listed as both Jat and Rajput, while the bulk of the Chadhar clans were recorded under a single entry under Rajput. In this post, I shall look at the very large and influential tribe of the Chadhars, as well as more localized tribes like the Akera, Gilotar, Lali, Nissowana and Rehan.

Akera

The Akera are a very localized clan of Jat status, found along both banks of Jhelum River, just above the town of Kot Khan. According to their traditions, their ancestor Khizar was granted a jagir by the 18th Century Sial ruler, Walidad Khan. Little is known of the their tribal origin, but they are one of number tribes found along the banks of Jhelum river, who claim to have always been their. Their are however traditions of migration from Sindh, and the Akera could be one of the earliest of these migrants. They therefore need to be distinguished from tribes such as the Chadhar, who claim to be Rajput, with strong traditions of migration from Rajasthan or Delhi.


Chadhar

Moving now on to the Chadhar, a tribe found among both Rajputs and Jats. Interestingly, in different parts of Punjab, the way to pronounce the word Chadhar differs. For example it is commonly pronounced Chadhar but in some areas of the Punjab, like the cities of Jhang and other adjoining districts, it is pronounced as Chadhrar, while in the Majha, Doaba and Malwa areas it is pronounced as Chandhar.
Chadhars claim descent from Chandarh, the son of Raja Ravilan of the lineage of king Pandu of the Mahabharata. They are Chandra Vanshis, and it is widely believed that they are a branch of the Tomar Rajputs, with the branch of the tribe of in Jhang saying that they are the descendants of Raja Toor and that they migrated into the Punjab from Rajputana.

According to their traditions, in 1193 AD, when Mohammad Shahabuddin Ghauri invaded India, the clan moved from Rajasthan to the Punjab. Some went to Bahawalpur, where they were converted to Islam by Pir Shershah (Jalaluddin Surkh-Posh Bukhari) of Uchch Sharif. From Bahawalpur, they migrated north, along the course of the rivers Ravi River and River Chenab. They clashed wit those tribes already settled in the region such as the Kharal, Harals and Sial tribes over the possession of essential water resources.

Interestingly, the Chandarhs were the villains in the famous Punjabi romance story of Mirza Sahiban. It is said that Mirza Kharal, the hero of the story, was slain by Chadhars as Sahiban, the heroine was betrothed to Zahir Khan, the son of Jham Khan, a Chandarh Jatts. Because of this murder, it is said that there were many battles between Chandarh and Kharals.
Chadhar sub clans.

Sub-Clans

According Chadhar genealogists, they are divided into several sub-clans, most of which are found in Jhang. These include:
1. Aasi
2. Wejhwe
3. Wijhalke
4. Warbhu
5. Kulle
6. Kaloke
7. ‘Jappa
8. Lune or Loone
9. Sajanke
10. Nalere(sometimes pronounced Lalere)
11. Kangar
12. Rajoke
13. Kamoke
14. Harya
15. Paroke
16. Jatoke
17. Deoke
18. Moona
19. Majoka
20. Paajike
21. Chookhia
22. Wallara
23. Thabal,
24. Sajankey,

Many Chadar villages are named after these sub-tribes like Wijhalke and Kaloke and Chak Sajanke and Chak Loone and Mauza Wllara on the right and left banks of the Chenab in the Chiniot District. Well known villages of Chandarhs in other areas of Punjab include Chandarh, Rajeana, Dhaaban, Awan and Rampur.

Rajputs or Jats?


Jhang Chadhars claim that they are Rajputs, while Chadhras of some areas of Punjab claim to be Jats. According to the Census of 1881, 26404 Chandars recorded themselves as Jats and 177,746 recorded themselves as Rajputs. Furthermore, the gazetteer of Jhang District (1881 – 1884), Chandarhs are considered to be good farmers and rarely indulged in cattle rustling or theft unlike their neighbours, the Sials, Kharals and others. The distinction in the valley of the Jhelum is not quite that clear, however, with regards to the Chadhars, their neighbours generally if sometimes grudgingly accept their status as Rajput

Distribution

Chadhars occupy a large area of land on the left bank of the Chenab, in the Jhang District, starting from Khiwa (along the boundaries of the Sials) to the adjoining areas of Sayyids of Rajoea Sadaat. Their main village is Tahli Mangeeni which is said to be their throne or Takht. Other villages include Chak 20 Gagh.

 

The Chadhars are found in districts of Jhang, Faisalabad, Sargodha, Sahiwal, Sheikhupura, Gujrat, Gujranwala, Lahore, Khanewal, Multan, Bhakkar, Bahawalpur, Okara and also in some parts of Sindh. There is also a village named Chadhrar near Tank, in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Some of the Chadhars settled in the Firozpur District in Indian Punjab and founded the village of Chandarh near Mudki. Others settled in Nakodar near Jalandhar. As Muslim Jats, most of the Chadhar Jats shifted from Ferozepur to Amritsar, and Gurdaspur after partition. Most of these Chadhars are now found in Faisalabad.

Chadhars of Chakwal. Jhelum, Khushab and Mianwali:

In Chakwal District, where the northern most Chadhar settlements are found, important villages include Dhok Chadhar, Dhok Miyal, Punjain and Chak Baqar Shah. In Jhelum District, they are found in the village of Abdullahpur and in Lilla town. While accross the Jhelum river in Mandi Bahauddin, they are found in the villages of Beerpindi Jharana, Bosaal, Bukkan, Gohri and Mangat, Mian da Lok. In Mianwali District, they are found in Sultanwala.

 

Gilotar
Moving on to the Gilotar are entirely confined to Jhang District, and their villages are situated on the banks of the Chenab river, north of the Chadhars. With regards to their origins, they are considered as Jat, and this is accepted by their neighbours. Their own tradition makes references to their migration from Hansi, in what is now Haryana, to Uch Sharif, where they are said to have converted to Islam at the hands of the Sufi saint Jahaniyan Jahangasht (1307–1383). These Gilotars were said to have belonged to the Ahir caste, but after their settlement in Jhang, they contracted marriages with neighbouring Jat tribes, and as such became Jat.

Their villages are all in Shorkot Tehsil, and the neighbouring Chiniot District. In Chiniot, they are found in Gandhlanwali, Burj Mal,Burj Umer ,Chhani Chuhr and Gilotaranwala and in Shorkot their main village is Jhangar Gloteran.

 Lali
The Lali, or sometimes written as Lalee, are a Jat clan, found mainly in Chiniot and Jhang districts. They are one of a number of Jat clans that have lived in the Kirana Bar for centuries, and were historically a pastoral tribe. The Lali have several sub-divisions, the most important being the Miana, Kahana, Wanoka, Lohry, Kawain and Bodhar. The tribe has produced a famous Sufi saint, Mian Muhammad Siddique Lali, who has given them a status of sanctity among the other Bar tribes. Their traditional seat of power was at the village of Kanweinwala, but this was reduced to a petty chieftainship with the arrival of the British. A secondary chieftainship also existed at the village of Jakoky, but was extinguished by the Sikhs. The Lali also founded the town of Lalian, literally the place of the Lali, where a good number are still found.

Outside Chiniot and Jhang districts, and they also have a few settlements such as Aasianwala, Chak No 60 S.B and Chak No 61 S.B in Sargodha District. Within Jhang/Chiniot, important villages include Lalian, Ismailkot, Jallaywala. Kanainwala, Jabana, Jagokay, Wallah, Mumtazabad, Miana Thein, Kahana Mauza Bahuddin, Thata Mian Laala, Wanoka, Dawar, Kot Bahadur, Thatta Mian Lala, Kahana Lali, Judhi Sultan and Mohsinabad.

 

 

Bhao, Kahlotra, Kamlak, and Sau /Sao Tribes

Many of the tribes that I have so far looked at, such as the Kanyal, for example, have traditions that they migrated from the Chibhal of Jammu and Kashmir, and I shall now look at some of the tribes that still have a presence in that region, in addition to having branches settled in Pothohar. I shall start off by giving a brief descriptions of the Bhao, Kahlotra, Kamlak, and Sau tribes. All these tribes are by origin Dogra, and question then arises, who exactly then are the Dogras? They are largely Hindu ethnic community concentrated in the region between Tawi and Chenab river in Jammu and Kashmir, and the word Dogra is said to have arisen from the fact that the cradle of the Dogra people lies between the two lakes of Sruinsar and Mansar. Its derivations is therefore from the word Dwigart Desh (meaning country of two hollows), which was converted into Duggar and Dugra, which then became Dogra. The term Dogra does not refer to a single caste, but is more a linguistic category. For example, included within the Dogra category are groups that identify themselves as Rajputs or Brahman. Most of the Dogra Rajputs follow the Hindu faith, however the region lying to the west of the Chenab River saw the conversion to Islam of most of the Rajput clans. This happened largely as the Rajput population in Jammu was thickest around the Mughal road leading from the plains of western Punjab into Kashmir, through the Bhimber-Rajauri-Shupian route across the Pir Panjal. This was the route historically used by various Muslim armies on their march to Kashmir. The first Rajput chiefs said to have embraced were those of the Khokhar tribe. One of the first to convert was the Khokhar chief Rai, according to the Tabaqat i_Nasiri had embraced Islam in the time of Mohammed Ghori. Manhas and Sulehria Rajputs became Muslims in large numbers on the borders of Jammu in the region called Salahar-Tappa and Manhas-Tappa. Communities such as the Jarral, Sulehria, Mangral, Bhao and Manhas converted in large numbers in the 16th Century. The territory between Tawi and Jhelum, became known as the Chibhal, after the largest tribe in the region, the Chib. With their conversion to Islam, many other clans such as the Bhawpal, Sau and Kamlak also converted to Islam. In the pre-independence period the Muslim Rajput population was more than double that of the Hindu Rajputs.

The 1911 Census of India was the last one that collected information on the various clans of the Pahari Rajput. According to the 1911 Census of India, the main clans were:

Tribe Population
Badhan 6,856
Bains 6,193
Bhatti 4,451
Bhao 592
Bomba 1,462
Chauhan 3,646
Chib 9,665
Domaal 6,953
Douli 3,009
Gakhar 13,825
Janjua 8,062
Jarral 8,506
Khakha 1,391
Khokhar 7,736
Mangral 7,027
Manhas 6,707
Narma 6,617
Sau 2,961
Thakhar 10,451
Other Clans 64,003

 

As this table shows, the largest clan in Chibhal Region were the Gakhars, in particular in what is now Mirpur and Kotli Districts. In latter posts I intend to look at the Mangral and Douli tribes, and hopefully time permitting the Bomba and Khakha.
 

Bhao

Let start with the Bhao or sometime pronounced Bhau or even Bahu , who are a Rajput clan, found in Punjab, Pakistan as well as both Indian administered Jammu & Kashmir as well as Azad Kashmir. According to the tribe’s tradition, they are Raghbansi Rajputs, originally from Ayodhya in North India. This migration is said to have occurred a thousand years ago, with the Bhoas first migrating to Jammu, where they settled near Akhnur on the banks of the Chenab river. In the 14th Century, small groups began to move into what is now Gujrat District. At the time of their settlement in Gujrat, they also started to convert to Islam.

The name Bhao is said to mean those who inspire fear in the local Dogri language, which is spoken in Jammu. They have said to have acquired this name when the tribe was settling in Jammu, it inspired fear among its enemies, and hence got the name but others say the Bhao were free booters or looters and hence earned the title. However, according to another tradition, the Bhao are branch of the Jamwals, thereby related to the Minhas Rajputs. The ancestors of the both the Bhao and Jamwal were the Dev dynasty that ruled Jammu. The Devs largely remained loyal to the Mughal kings, but a feud within Dev dynasty was deepened with the Mughal agencies exploiting it, and during the late sixteenth century, the Devs virtually split into two factions (Jammu faction of Jammu city-fort, and Bahu faction across the Tawi river), while the actual Mughal supremacy over the region was established. The intra-dynasty feud and the Mughal supremacy were both terminated in Jammu during the reigns of Dhruv Dev (1707–33) and Ranjit Dev (1733–82). The Bahu is a hill located on the outskirts of Jammu. After their defeat, the Bahu Jamwals moved to Akhnur, Bhimber and the Kharian region of the Punjab.

The Muslim branch of the Bhao are found in the Kharian Tehsil of Gujrat District, as well as a few villages in the Bhimber District of Azad Kashmir. The Hindu branch is still found in Akhnur in Jammu District. Historically, Muslim Bhao were also found in Gurdaspur District, but all these Bhao Rajput emigrated to Pakistan at the time of the partition of India. Their customs and traditions are similar to the Chib and Sohlan Rajputs, tribes of Dogra extraction who are there neighbours.

Distribution of Muslim Bhao Rajputs by District in Jammu and Kashmir State According 1911 Census of India

District Population
Jammu 66
Reeasi 53
Mirpur 457
Poonch Jagir 16
Total Population 592

 

As the census figures, the bulk of the Muslim Bhao population was found in what is now Bhimber.

Distribution of Hindu Bhao Rajputs by District in Jammu and Kashmir State According 1911 Census of India

District Population
Jammu 2,184
Udhampur 100
Reeasi 139
Mirpur 69
Poonch Jagir 9
Total Population 2,501

 

The Hindu Bhao were found largely in Akhnur, the region of Jammu bordering Bhimber. The difference of religion was largely due to the fact that the western branch of the Chibs, the largest of the Rajput clans in this region on the slopes of the Pir Panjal, had converted to Islam, and other smaller clans followed their example. Around Akhnur, most of the Dogras remained Hindus, and as did the Bhao.

Kahlotra

Looking now at the Kahlotra, sometimes pronounced as Kalotri or even Kalotra, a tribe historically found Naushera and Rajauri tehsils of what was then Riasi District till 1947, with a smaller number found in the south eastern portions of Kotli District. The Kahlotra are sub-group of the Dogra community. Among those clans of the Dogras that converted to Islam, the foremost are the Kahlotra. However, there are still a good many Kahlotra who have remained Hindu. According to some traditions, the Kahlotra are a clan of Suryavanshi Rajputs, while others make them a clan of the Manhas Rajput tribe. The Muslim Kahlotra also played an important role in Adam malia (Non payment of land tax) and Quit Kashmir movement.

 

In 1947, at the partition of India, entire Muslim branch of the Kahlotra tribe migrated from  the Jammu region to Azad Kashmir and Pakistan. A significant number are now settled in villages such as Thoa Khalsa in Rawalpindi District, but are still distinguished from their neighbours by the continuied use of the Dogri language.

Kamlak

The Kamlak are a Dogra clan, and have much in common with the Bhao and Sohlan referred to in my earlier blogs. According to their traditions, the ancestor of the tribe was one Kamlak. Kamlak is said to have belonged to the Minhas Rajput tribe. After a feud with family members, Kamlak is said have left Jammu and settled in Budhal tehsil. The Muslim branch of the Kamlak claims descent from Raja Azamat Khan Kamlak, who migrated from Budhal to the village of Azamatabad, situated in north Thanamandi Tehsil. They are a Rajputs tribe found mainly in the Rajauri District of Jammu and Kashmir. In Budhal Tehsil, there are still several villages of Kamlak, both Hindu and Muslim, such as Kandi, Dandwal, Rajnagar and Shahpur. Other then Azmatabad, Manyal in Thanamandi Tehsil of Rajouri District is an important Kamlak village. The Hindu Kamlak are a Dogra clan, and they intermarry with neighbouring clans such as the Charak, Chandial and Manhas. Both groups of Kamlak claim a common origin and have some common customs and rituals. A number of Kamlak are became refugees and are now settled in Punjab.

Sau /Sao

I will now look at the Sau, or sometimes pronounced as Shau. They are a branch of the Minhas Rajputs, but of all the Rajputs clans found in Mirpur, they have the least written about them. The word Sau is a corruption of Sahu, or well born, and they claim a higher status from other Minhas descended clans. It is in fact a corruption of word saha which the Sanskrit version of old Persian word Shaha or emperor. In the Pothohar and Chibhali regions, tribes such as the Gakhar and Janjua use the term to describe themselves in distinction from those tribe such as the Kanyal or Nagyal, who are called zamindar. Found now mainly in Mirpur District, in villages such as Chatroh, Dheri Phali, Jabot, Khirri, Lakhora, Kot Qandu Khan and Unna (near Dadyal), often surrounded by Bains and Jat villages.

Distribution of Muslim Sao / Sahu Rajputs by District in Jammu and Kashmir State According 1911 Census of India

As this table shows, more then even the Bhao, the Sahu are a tribe of the Mirpur region.

District Population
Jammu 26
Mirpur 2,934
Total Population 2,961