Rawal

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The Rawal (Gujarati: રાવલ; Nepali: रावल) is a title used by Hindu Rajpoot/[[Thakur and Jatts (Indian title)|Thakurs]] and Brahmins in India and Nepal. With the passage of time and due to different political, cultural and social changes in Indian society, some of Rawals are converted to different religions e.g. Sikh and Muslims. They also adopt different occupations and settle in different parts of the world. One of them is a Muslim tribe found in the Punjab province of Pakistan.[1]

History[edit]

The tribe was associated with the occupation of hikmat (the practice of traditional Muslim Unani medicine), and astrology. They are from Bapa rawal, a rajpute hero of anciet indian history. They have all subcasts of Rajputs and Jatts. They were also courts men, Brahmins and Pundits. Many were also said to have a thorough knowledge of Hindu pahdhair rituals and traditions, and joined various Hindu religious orders. The term Jogi-Rawal was often used in the past for this community before their conversion to Islam.[2]

The term Rawal was also seen as synonym for a Jogi (a wandering Hindu holyman), and according to other traditions, they are descended from the Hindu jogis who accepted Islam.[3]

Bappa Rawal was one of the most powerful and famous rulers of the Mewar Dynasty. Although a surviving member of the Guhilot clan, Prince Kalbhoj (his actual name) who came from Atri clan did not continue the family name of seven generations when he came to the throne; instead, he established the Mewar Dynasty, naming it for the kingdom he had just taken. He went on to become a celebrated hero on battlefields near and far, yet his fascinating life is full of enigmas, and many were the legends created about him. It is said that Bappa was blessed by Harit Rishi, a sage of the Mewar region, with kingship. His father, Rawal Mahendra II had married a woman of the Paramara Rajput clan, from Mt. Abu or Chandravati, both Paramara centres at that time. She was also the sister of Maan Mori, the Paramara king who ruled much of the State of Mewar. This included Guhilot clan land, which Paramara invaders from Malwa had annexed a century or so earlier, and set up their capital in the ancient fortress of Chittorgarh.

Distribution[edit]

In India,brahmin Community also has title "Rawal". They are the knowledgeable group of peoples working in different fields at higher positions.

The members of this community are also found in significant numbers in parts of India such as Gujarat, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Punjab , Chandigarh and Uttarakhand

In Pakistan, they are found mainly in the urban areas of Punjab, mainly the cities of Lahore, Faisalabad, Gujranwala, Sialkot, Sargodha and Gojra. Prior to the independence of in 1947, there were large communities in Amritsar and Jalandhar, in East Punjab, almost all of whom moved to Pakistan in 1947.[4]

The independence of Muslim Pakistan in 1947, changed the ritual and practices of Rawal community. The community lost entirely all their Hindu rituals and practices. Now they are just orthodox Muslims, following the Sunni Hanafi Brelvi school. Changes have also taken place, as regards to their occupations. While many are now engaged as hakims and Farmers, other have taken to Standard Education under Islamic influence. Members of the community have also emigrated in numbers to the United Kingdom, and form communities, particularly in the city of Manchester[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ A Glossary of the tribes & castes of Punjab and North West Frontier Province by H A Rose low Price Publications page 330
  2. ^ A Glossary of the tribes & castes of Punjab by H A Rose low Price Publications page 330
  3. ^ A Glossary of the tribes & castes of Punjab and North West Frontier Province by H A Rose low Price Publications page 330
  4. ^ The Ranking of Brotherhoods: The Dialectics of Muslim Caste among Oversees Pakistanis by Pnina Werbner pages 103 to 145 in Muslim Communities of South Asia by T N Madam Manohar publications 1995 page 127
  5. ^ The Ranking of Brotherhoods: The Dialectics of Muslim Caste among Oversees Pakistanis by Pnina Werbner pages 103 to 145 in Muslim Communities of South Asia by T N Madam Manohar publications 1995 page 127