Hindustani people (People of Hindustan), also known as Hindavi (People of Hind) are a panethnicity primarily living in the Hind Region of India also known as the Hindi belt, which is located in the Gangetic Plain of North India, between the Himalayas and the Vindhyas. They are identified as such on one or more of genealogical, linguistic, or cultural grounds.
Traditionally, Hindustani or Hindavi identity is primarily cultural, with Hindustanis or Hindavis being those who the Hindi Language with any variety of Hindi is their prime language, mainly residing in present day Indian States of Bihar, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana and Delhi: in other words, the Hindi belt. The Hindustani or Hindavi People seems to be of ethnolinguistic in origin rather than as an ethnic group but certain Indo-Aryan ethnic groups are identified as Hindustani people.
If the diverse Hindustani pan-ethnicity is regarded as a single ethnic group, then it constitutes one of the world's largest.
Although the word "Hindustani" refers to people, it is historically important to understand the complex history, culture, ethos & demography of India. Certain groups of Hindustani people are identified with multiple identities, with a more localized prioritized ethnic orientation, for example, Haryanvi people, Avadhi people, Malvi people, Himachali people, Rajasthani people, in addition to further tribal, village,and/or religious identities
However, whenever used, it is used to generally denote persons, whose native language is variety of Hindi and belong to certain parts of north India ( i.e. Hindi belt ). Hindi, the main unifying feature among Hindavis, is an Indo Aryan language of Sanskrit heritage originating in ancient India. In the present day, Hindustani people are generally identified with the Hindi-speaking population of Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Bihar. The use of the word Hindustani people in general & in the media is becoming scarce in the 21st century.
Use of term in media and culture
The word Hindustani people is used in many patriotic songs and films, made during British rule in India and even after independence, wherein it implies to persons belonging to India or Hindustan as a whole and not restricted to imply only persons of Hindi belt.
The word "Hindustani people" is also used in a national sense, when used in broad sense with culture, heritage and the customs of Hindustan.
Hindustani & Hindavi is also found to be used by many people from North India, especially from Uttar Pradesh as their Surname. The surname is also found among persons of Indian origin, who had migrated out of India, during last two centuries.
One famous use of word Hindustani as Surname in media was in film Raja Hindustani, where lead role was known by this name.
- Hudson, John C., ed., Goode’s World Atlas 20th Edition Chicago, Illinois, USA:2000—Rand McNally Map Page 203 Major Languages of India—map of the ethnolinguistic groups of India
- Hidu writers constitute an overwhelming numbers of Hindustani people. Along with Urdu writers, they serve inhabitants of Bihar, U.P., Delhi, Madhya Bharat Marxist Cultural Movement in India: 1947-1958 by Sudhi Pradhan Page 40
- In Hazaribagh, Hinudstani people are found but in west and south people are mainly aboriginal.The Indian encyclopaedia: biographical, historical, religious..,Volume 3,edited by Subodh Kapoor. Page 724
-  The People of India by Herbert Risley, 1999.
- HINDUSTANI SPEAKING-PEOPLE Annual report of the Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church Methodist Episcopal Church. Missionary Society Free eBook, 1857
-  The Sikhs and Afghans, in connexion with the India and Persia, immediately after death of Rajit Singh By Shahāmat ʻAlī
- The Orient and its people by Jeannette L. Hauser, Isiah L. Hauser published by I. L. Hauser & company, 1876. Page 50-57, Page 164