The Dakhini Muslims, or Deccani Muslims, are a community of diverse people from various ethnic backgrounds who inhabit the Deccan region of Southern India, and speak the Dakhini language, a form of Urdu. The community now has their own separate ethnic identity, but the Dakhini Muslims come from various native and foreign ethnic backgrounds. Their history can be traced to the Bahmani Sultanate, which was the first Independent Muslim kingdom in southern India, and the Deccan Sultanates which followed its demise. Dakhini Muslims can have Arab, Persian, and Turkish ancestries in addition to having the local Dravidian and Indo Aryan heritage. Dakhini Muslims, are found in many places throughout South India, extending from southern Maharashtra, to northern Tamil Nadu including Karnataka, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, and Kerala where Dakhini Muslims from the north migrated, and formed a community there. There are also large diaspora communities, especially in Pakistan, where they settled after Indian independence, forming a portion of the Urdu speaking minority of Pakistan, the Muhajirs.
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