Nandvanshi is a term designating the descendants of Nanda (also known as Nandagopa). According to the Harivamsha and the Puranas, Nanda was the head of the Gopas, a tribe of cowherds referred as Holy Gwals. Vasudeva took his new-born son Krishna to Nanda on the night of the child's birth so that Nanda could raise him.
Nandvanshi Ahirs are found in Central Doab, West of Yamuna. They claim origin from Mathura, Uttar Pradesh. In Rajasthan they are found in Jaipur. Nandvanshi Ahirs are also found in Khandwa and Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh, Aurangabad, Akola, Amravati, Bid, Chandrapur, Jalna, Pune, Nagpur, Nanded, Thane, Wardha and Washim in Maharashtra and Hyderabad in Andhra Pradesh. The Kaonra Ahirs of Mandla and the Kamaria ahirs of Jabalpur are considered to belong to the Nandvanshi group.
One section of scholars, including K.M. Munshi, is of the openion that the Gurjars are the original inhabitants of India and are descended from Yadavas or Ahirs. A clan of Gurjars even call itself Nandvanshi.
The Mehar of Rajasthan, also known as Meher claim Rajput descent, though this is not accepted by other Rajputs. The Mehar of the Hadoti region refer to themselves as Nand Mehar, claiming descent from king Nand of Vrindavan,[who?] and thus to be Nandvanshis.[page needed]
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