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Ahir clans

The Ahir clans are the various subsets of the Ahir, a primarily Hindu class of herdsman in India.

Contents


Nandvanshi

A legendary story of the origin of the Nandvanshi Ahirs narrates that on his way to kill the rakshas, Krishna crossed the river Yamuna accompanied by the Gawlis; those that crossed the river with him became the Ahir Nandabanshi.[1]

Yaduvanshi

The Yaduvanshi Ahir (, also spelled Jadubansis, Jadubans, Yadavanshi, Yadavamshi) claim descent from the ancient Yadava tribe of Krishna.[2] In Uttar Pradesh, the Yaduvanshi branch of the Ahirs is noted as being found west of the Yamuna and the Upper Doab,[3] and in the northern districts of Rajasthan.[4] In Awadh and in the North Western provinces where the Yadons have numerous settlements, the clan is divided. One branch calls itself Yaduvanshi Ahirs, to distinguish it from Yadons of the Daob, who have lost status through practising Karao or widow -marriage, and through violating Rajput custom by marrying into their own clan.[5][5]

The British civil servant Meadows Taylor noted of the Yaduvanshi subset of Ahirs: Some of the Jad-bansis have embraced Islam, and, in common with certain other tribes, are known as Ranghars.[6]

Gwalvanshi

The Gwalvanshi Ahirs are historically associated with cowherding.

Bhurtiya

The Bhurtiya are a sub-division of the Ahir community, and like other Ahirs, they claim descent from the god Krishna. They are said to have immigrated to Gujarat, where they were known as Gurjar Rajputs. About three centuries ago, these Gurjar Rajputs settled in Awadh. The etymology of the word Bhurtiya is that it is a corruption of the Hindi word phurti (quickness). According to their tribal legends, an ancestor of the community was in such a rush, that she left her jewellery, and was given the nickname phurti, and this name was given to her descendents, and over time corrupted to Bhurtiya. They are found mainly in the districts of Varanasi, Allahabad, Meerut and Mathura.[7]

Bharwad

The Bharwads are found in the state of Gujarat in India. Those of Saurashtra use Ahir[8] as a surname,[9] Bharwad consider themselves as Nandvanshi Ahirs.[10]

Tomara

According to the Mahabharat, the Tomara clan was once a part of Yadav clan. Kosli village in Rohtak, Haryana, was established by Kosal Dev, grandson of Anangpal Tomar (the last Hindu king of Delhi) and son of Ausan Singh.

Chudasama

Painting of Jahal, sonbai and Devat Bodar who is killing his own son Uga to save Ranavghan

The Chudasama are a Rajput clan found in the state of Gujarat in India.[11] The Chudasama dynasty, originally of Abhira clan from Sindh wielded great influence around Junagarh from 875 A.D.[12] Through many centuries of migrations, mainly from the Gujarat, emigrants have spread to almost every corner of the world, with a presence in Kenya and the United Kingdom, where they have established prosperous communities. Prince Hemachandra, a Chudasama, was called Abhira and Yadav.[13][14] They are also called Ahir Ranas.[13] Ra Graharipu the Ahir of Junagarh who fought Mularaja Solanki in A.D 961 was a Sindh Chudasama.[15][16]

The originator of the Chudasama clan is said to be an ancient prince named Gajpat, who had hidden in the bangle (chuda) of Hinglaj Mataji to escape persecution from a Muslim invader, who wanted to convert all the people to Islam. They are a branch of Samma Rajput clan of Sindh, descending from Yadav clan in which Krishna was born. The surname itself indicates this Chuda-Samma now written as Chudasama.[11]

Pal-Kshatriya

Pal ("Protector") is the name of a Chandravanshi Kshatriya Clan. During the Muslim invasions of India, many Kshatriya had scattered to the forests. In order to re-organise all the scattered Chandravanshi Kshatriyas a Hindu Maha Sammelan was held in 1911 in Jaipur. Consequently, of Maha Sammelan of Jaipur in 1911, the two Mahasabhas were established. One with the name of Akhil Bhartiya Pal Kshatriya Mahasabha and other was Akhil Bhartia Yadav Mahasabha.

Because the Chandravanshis were further divided in two groups one is Kuruvanshi and another is Yaduvanshi.They are also known as Pal Kshatriya, Pal Thakurs, and Pali Rajput in western part of the country.

Paratharia

The community is believed to have derived its name from the Parathar region, their original homeland. According to their traditions, they migrated from Mathura along with Krishna to the Parathar region of Saurashtra. The Paratharia then migrated to Kutch around 1500-1600 AD. They are now distributed in eighty four villages in Kutch District, out of which thirty four are in Bhuj taluka, twenty four Anjar talukas and twelve villages in Nakathrana. A few are also found in Saurashtra. The Paratharia are a Gujarati speaking community. The Paratharia community consist of a number of clans, the main ones being the Baththa, Gegal, Dheela, Dhangar, Changha, Varjun, Matha and Chod. Each of the clans are of equal status and intermarry. Like neighbouring Hindu communities, the community practice clan exogamy. The Paratharia are a community of small and medium sized farmers. Milk selling is an important subsidiary of the community, while small number are now petty businessmen.

Sorathia

The Sarothia are a sub-group of the Ahir caste found in the state of Gujarat in India. The community is believed to have derived its name from the Sorath region, their original homeland. According to their traditions, they migrated from Mathura along with Krishna.

Some Sorathia claim to be Rajput, while others claim descent from the Soomra Dynasty. The community left Junagadh to escape prosecution at the hands of the Nawabs and settled in Kutch District. They are now found mainly in the Anjar and Bhuj talukas of Kutch District. The Sorathia speak Kutch. The Sorathia community consist of eight clans: Der, Chandravadiya, Baldania, Hadia, Chotara, Gudasarania, Vaghamashi and Malsatar. Each of the clans are of equal status and intermarry. Like neighbouring Hindu communities, the community practice clan exogamy.

The Sorathia are a community of small and medium sized farmers. They are involved mainly in the growing and selling of vegetables. The vegetable trade in Anjar town is almost entirely in the hands of the Sorathia. Some of them earn a living as contractors and work as construction workers.Their looks quite vary compared to other castes like Caucasian, especially their straight nose, tall, thin lips, is believed to have Scythian origin.

Ahir Pancholi

The Pancholi are a sub-division of the Ahir caste found in the state of Gujarat in India. The community is believed to have derived its name from the Panchal region in Saurashtra, their original homeland. According to their traditions, they migrated from Mathura along with Krishna to the Parathar region of Saurashtra. They are distributed over eighteen villages in the Saurashtra region. The community are found mainly in Junagadh, Amreli and Bhavnagar Districts

The Pancholi community consist of forty four clans, the main ones being the Kalosoriys, Kataria, Dhola, Vania, Kasadh, Vasoyo, Jholandra, Nakhom, Hadia and Buldania. Each of the clans are of equal status and intermarry, like neighbouring Hindu communities,

Maschoiya

The Maschoiya are a sub-group of the Ahir caste found in the state of Gujarat in India. The Maschoiya are a community of Ahirs who are said to have settled along the banks of the Machhu-katia river, and the word Maschoiya literally means those from Macchu-katia. According to the traditions of the Maschoiya were originally Soomra Rajputs, and an ancestor left Sindh for Saurashtra, where he married an Ahir girl; his descendents thus became Ahirs.

The Maschoiya Ahir are found mainly in Rajkot District, with a few also found in Junagadh District. They are a Gujarati-speaking community. The Maschoiya are divided into a number of clans, all of which are of equal status. The main ones being the Dangar, Chavda, Kuvadiya, Sonara, Chhaiya, Boricha, Balasara, Bakutra, Makvana, Dav, Lavadiya, Metra, Humbal, Khungla, Birda, Meta, Herrla, Kelodia, Kangadh, Khokatara, Shiayar, and Chudasama. Unlike other Ahir communities in Gujarat, the Maschoiya practice consanguineous marriages.

Aheer

The Aheer have been referred to as "Musalman peasants, like their neighbours." They are essentially a tribe of the Thal region, with villages in Khushab, Sargodha and Mianwali districts. They are differing and conflicting theories about their origin, as is the case with many other Punjab tribes. One of the tradition connects them to Qutab Shah, the ancestor of the Awan and Khokhar tribes. According to another tradition, they are Yaduvanshi Rajputs, and descended from the Krishna. Aheer is also a principle Muslim Jat clan found in various parts of Pakistan. In the Pothohar region, the Aheer have a small presence, with just two villages, Bher Ahir and Ahir in the Gujjar Khan Tehsil.

Shaikh of Bihar

The Kulhaiya Shaikh are found mainly in Araria District and in Kadwa. They get their name from the custom of not marrying within their clan (kul), or within their village. They speak Maithili, while many also now have some knowledge of Urdu. The community are converts from the Ahir caste, and said to have converted to Islam in the 16th Century.

Like other Shaikh groups, they are strictly endogamous, and continue the practice of clan exogamy. They are Sunni Muslims, but their beliefs incorporate many local customs and traditions. The community live in villages which are single caste, and are largely small and medium sized farmers. Despite living near the Bengali, there are no intermarriages between the two groups.

Dhangar

Devagiri fort-The capital of Yadavas Ahirs of Maharastra are also called Dhangars. The Ain-i-Akbari describes them as being a proud, refractory and domineering race of Rajputs, living in the Basim Sircar and, with numerous armed forces, occupying the forts and controlling the surrounding districts. Rajputs and Dhangars have same or common gotras.[17][18] There were twelve tribes of Dhangar and they had a division of labour amongst brothers of one family. This later formed three sub-divisions and one half division. These three being Hatkar (shepherds), Ahir (cowherds) or Mhaskar (Gujjar) (buffalo keepers), and Khutekar (wool and blanket weavers). The half division is called Khateek or Khatik (butchers). All sub-castes fall in either of these divisions. All sub-divisions emerge from one stock and all sub-divisions claim to be a single group of Dhangars.

Jadhav

Jadhav are members of the Maratha clan system, hailing from Maharashtra, Gujarat, Karnataka, and other Maratha-dominated Indian regions. Jadhav originates from the royal Seuna Yadavas of Devagiri, however demographer Reginald Edward Enthoven said that Yadavs of Devagiri were Ahirs.[13]

Kuruba

The word Kuruba means "warriors" and "trustworthy people." The word "Kuru" means "do or seek" in Sanskrit, and "Kuruhu" means "trust" in Kannada. According to British historian Reginald Edward Enthoven, Kurumdas are none other than Ahirs of the south.[13][19] "Kuruba" can be inferred to mean "doers" or "trustworthy (male person)". Kuruba can also be inferred to mean "seeker of knowledge": kuru (seek), bha (knowledge, light). Kurubas are the most ancient and original inhabitants of India and were a pastoral community.

Aharwar

Historians Henry M Elliot, W.E Purser and Herbert Charles Fanshawe regards Ahars with Ahirs and had proved that Ahirs were ancestors of Ahars.[20][21] The Ahar are a Hindu caste found in North India. They are said to was descend from Ahir tribe. Ahar comes under Chandravanshi Rajput clans. The Ahars are one of the most ancient martial tribes of India, who ruled over different parts of India and Nepal since ancient times. A community of Hindu Kshatriya belong to Ahirwada (Jhansi) are known as Ahar Kshatriya, by Rajput clan belonging to the Chandravanshi Kshatriya lineage. Many Ahar live in different regions of India including Delhi, Mathura, Ahmedabad, Murena, Agra, and Jhansi.

Haral

The Harals of Chiniot, Sargodha and Gujranwala Districts of Punjab are also said to be a sub-caste of the Aheers and comes under Chandravanshi Rajput clans.

Barda

The Barda are a Hindu tribal community found in the states of Gujarat and Maharashtra in India. The community is also known as Adibashi or Khandeshi Bhil.

The community is now settled in the districts of Mehsana, Ahmedabad, Baroda and Surat. They speak Gujarati. In Maharashtra, the Barda are considered to be a sub-group of the Bhil ethnic group. According to their traditions, the community descend from Sabri Bhil, a well known character from the Ramayana. The Bardas are concentrated in the districts of Dhule, Jalgaon, Nasik, Osmanabad, Sangli, Kolhapur and Sholapur. They speak Barda bhasha, which is related to Marathi. Most Barda also speak Gujarati. The Barda are strictly endogamous, and practice clan exogamy. There major clans are the Ahir, Baria, Dangia, Gaikwad, Mali, Mori, and Thakur, all of whom intermarry.

Ghosi

The Ghosi are a Muslim community found mainly in North India.[22] They are associated with the occupation of selling milk. A small number of Ghosi are also found in the Punjab province of Pakistan. The Ghosi claim descent from both the Gujjar and Ahir communities.

References






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