Mughal Kassar (Urdu: ( کسر / مغل کسر ) is a Zamindar tribe and one of the three major land-owning tribes of Chakwal District in Punjab province, Pakistan. They occupy the northern part of Dhani, called 'Babial and Chaupeda'. In the Punjab settlement report of 1862, it is mentioned that they had come from Jammu along with the Mair-Minhas tribe and had been settled in this area by the Mughal Emperor, Zaheerudin Babur. However, in Punjab census of 1881 they claimed that they themselves were of Mughal descent, and presented a family tree that connected their lineage with Babur in the 8th generation and showed their ancestor Kassar (who was said to be a Barlas Mughal) as a distant cousin of Babur. Hence, they claimed that they had come with Babur's army as his fellow tribesmen and were settled in Dhani along with the Mairs and Kahuts by the Emperor himself. According to the census of 1931, their male population was approximately 40,000. Kassars tend to prefer their own caste for marriages but second priority goes to Mair Minhas and Kahout which suggests a common Rajput origin.
In character, the Kassar is a passionate and revengeful race, careless of human life, but good cultivators though somewhat exacting landlords. Envy is their most odious quality. The Kassar is a Martial race and they afford excellent material for the "army". Physically they are active, well made and high spirited. They are reckless and improvident, but take life cheerfully. They have no special ethnic belonging or places of worship, Most of them belongs to Ahle Sunnat (Urdu: اہل سنت) while considerable number follows Shia Islam (Arabic: شيعة, Shīʿah), apart from these two major sects some of them follow Ahl-e-Hadith School of thoughts. Diversity in their religious believes indicate their secular culture.The Kassars have the institution of sirdari, whereby the eldest son of a chief gets an extra share.The chiefs of the tribe use the title of "Sardar". The headmen also use the title of "Chaudhary" . They are men of engaging manners and fine appearance, good riders, fond of hawking, keen sportsmen, with frank manners and good presence. They breed a very fair stamp of horse. Most of their customs and traditions are not different in any respect from those of the tribes surrounding them, except that the graves of women are distinguished by stone at the head and foot parallel to the breadth of the grave, while other graves are parallel to the length .
The family tree of Kassar tribes is as follows:
Traditional territory and settlement area
The origin of the Kassar tribe is Chakwal District, where they have a significant presence throughout the region. Apart from Chakwal, they are also settled in Attock, Sargodha, Mandi Bahauddin, Gujrat, Khushab, Jhelum, Rawalpindi, Tehsil Sohawa, Badin (Sindh ), Larkana (Sindh), Muzafar Abad (Kashmir), Poonch (Kashmir), and Cakothi (Kashmir).
Towns in Chakwal dominated by the Kassar tribe include Fim Kassar, Farid Kassar, Balkassar, Balokassar, Sarkal Kassar, Bhagwal, Karsal, Saral, Miswall, Doray, Chauli, Mangwal, Dingi, Munwall, Bikhari Kalan, Bikhari Khurd, Pind Haraj, Dhok Peeli, Dhudial, Tattral, Latifal, Dhalal, Hastal, Maari, Thoha Bahadur, and Lakhwal. Kasra in Attock District is also an important Kassar village. Turkwal is situated in Tehsil Gujar Khan.
The first settlement of the Kassar tribe in Kashmir was made in Khalana (Muzafarabad); they then migrated to Poonch and other parts of Kashmir. Because of their first settlement in Khalana, they are also called “Qazian-e-Khalana” in Kashmir.
Prominent clans of the Kassar tribe are Chawli and Dullah. Other clans (ذیلی اقوام) are:
- Bikhari Khurd
- Colonel Muhammad Khan, Urdu writer and humorist, author of "Bajang Amad: / Army Personal"
- Ch.Ayaz Amir, Columnist, Member of National Assembly NA-60(Chakwal-I).Senior Leader of PMLN
- Brandeth, A: "District Gazeteer Jehllum", page 104. Punjab Government Press, 1904
- "Punjabi Musalmans" By Lt. Col. J.M.Wikeley
- "Punjabi Musalmans", By J.M.Wikeley & Rana Rehman Zafar, Page 113 & 124
- Jhelum District "Civil and Military Gazette" Press, 1907 -Jhelum(India)
- Glossary of tribes and castes of Punjab and North west frontier province By H.A.Rose, IBBETSON, Maclagan page 480
- Punjabi Musalman By J.M.Wikeley