|Pundhir or Pundir|
|Languages||Hindi, Rajasthani, Garhwali, Kumaoni and Awadhi|
|Populated States||Punjab region, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh|
|Subdivisions||Hindustani, Punjabi, Himachali, Garhwali and Awadhi|
The Pundir (also spelled Pandeer, Pandir, Pundhir, Pundeer or Poondir) is a Suryavanshi clan of Rajputs. The word itself is derived from the Sanskrit word "Purandara" literally meaning "the destroyer of enemy". The Pundir Rajputs hold riyasat in Nahan, Garhwal, Nagaur and Saharanpur where their Kuldevis are situated. Their shakha is Koolwal and their Kuldevis are Shakumbhri Devi in Saharanpur and Rajasthan along with Punyakshini Devi in Garhwal with their gotra being Pulastya and Parashar. Most of the Pundirs are today based mainly around the North Indian states of Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Haryana.
The Pundir clan has its origins with Raja Pundarik, the fourth king in line after Kusha. Pundarik is revered as a Rishi and his temple is situated in Katheugi village of the Kullu district in the state of Himachal Pradesh. The rishi is depicted as a white Nāga and in the Puranic lore Pundarik is the name of a White Naga and the legend of Pundarik Rishi also affirms his birth as a Naga from an earthen pot. Kusha, the first born of Sita & Ram, is said to have been the progenitor of the Pundirs.
Eric Stokes noted that
In the Katha the Pundir Rajputs stood out as the dominant landholders, dwelling together as a formidable clan that had never been properly brought under close administration. A proud, hardy race who possessed a long history of turbulence. Significantly they had successfully warded off alien intrusion. Strong, moreover, as the power of combination is among the gujjars it is stronger amongst these particular Rajputs, so that they have been able to keep their possessions almost intact, while all around them the ancestral rights of other castes have succumbed to the wealth and acts of the userer. So formidable did they appear as adversaries before the recapture of Delhi at the end of September 1857 that the British left them severely alone, despite their attacks on Deoband town and in similar depredations.[page needed]
- Stokes, Eric. The Peasant and the Raj: Studies in Agrarian Society and Peasant Rebellion.
- Evatt, John T. Historical Record of the Royal Garhwal Rifles (p. 78; p. 103)
- Roy, K. The Construction of Regiments in the Indian Army: 1859-1913. War in History, 1 April 2001, vol. 8, no. 2 (pp. 127–148)
- Bajpai, Shiv Chandra. The Northern Frontier of India: Central and Western Sector (p. 23)
- Siddiqi, Jamal Muhammad. A Historical Survey: Ancient Times to 1803 AD (p. 124; p. 180)