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Carte-de-visite of a Dhobi ironing.
Hinduism, Islam and Buddhism
Related ethnic groups
Muslim Dhobi

Dhobi known in some places as Dhoba,[1] Rajaka, a Scheduled caste in India and the greater Indian subcontinent whose traditional occupations are washing, ironing and agricultural workers.[2][3][4]

In 2017, Supreme Court of India noted calling people dhobi was offensive.[5]



In Maharashtra, the Dhobi are found throughout the state, and are also known as Parit. They claim to have originally belonged to the Rajput community, and in particular the Chauhan clan. The Dhobi have been listed as an Other Backward Class. They speak Marathi among themselves,and Hindi with outsiders.[6][need quotation to verify]

Tamil Nadu

Vannar belongs to the Valangai ("Right-hand caste faction"). Some of The Valangai comprised castes with an agricultural basis while the Idangai consisted of castes involved in manufacturing, Valangai, which was better organised politically [7][need quotation to verify]

"Kayvanaval Allitharum and the tiger flag were hoisted
were Identified"

— -Right hand history


In the Tirunelveli region, Thai deities (female deities) are worshipped in large numbers and are worshiped with a pedestal or trident. in states like Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, Vannars are still the priests of the Mariamman temple[9][10]


State/Territory Known as Description Status[11]
Andhra Pradesh Rajaka In Andhra Pradesh, the Rajakas do farming and agriculture, as well as washing, and ironing. However, there are many Rajakas in all sectors, such as doctors, engineers, lawyers, journalists, social services, IT, and politicians.[12] OBC
Assam Dhupi In 2001, Assam's Dhupi population was at 49,929, accounting for 2.7% of the total Scheduled Class (SC) population.[13] A high of 27.9% of this population was urban. The literacy rate among this group was 76%, above both the state figure (66.8%) and the aggregated national figure (54.7%) for SCs. SC
Bihar Dhobi, Rajak According to jangana 2023 Dhobi community in Bihar makes up around 0.84% (11 lakh) Hindu Dhobi, 0.31% (4 lakh) Muslim Dhobi (Qassar) of the state's total population, with maximum concentration in Muzaffarpur, Vaishali, Siwan, Purnia and East Champaran districts, respectively. Bihar's Dhobi community is included in Scheduled Caste from OBC Status due to socioeconomically low. Now, they are in all sectors, but mainly as government employers, doctors, IT engineers, social service, agriculture, farming and politicians. Among the numerically larger castes of SC, Dhobi have registered the highest overall literacy rate.[14] SC
Jharkhand SC
Madhya Pradesh In Madhya Pradesh, Dhobi are a Scheduled Class in the districts of Bhopal, Raisen, and Sehore.[11] SC and OBC elsewhere
Manipur Dhupi SC
Meghalaya Dhupi SC
Mizoram Dhupi SC
Odisha Dhoba, Dhobi, Rajak, Rajaka Odisha has a significant population of Dhobi people in its coastal belt, i.e. eastern Odisha (Cuttack, Puri, Balasore, Ganjam) and a smaller population in its central and western areas. They are included in Scheduled Caste list of Odisha.[15] SC
Rajasthan SC
Tripura Dhoba SC
Uttar Pradesh[16] Diwakar, Rajak The Dhobi population in the state has been classified as SC. SC
Uttarakhand SC
Delhi SC

Dhobis in Nepal

The Central Bureau of Statistics of Nepal classifies the Dhobi as a subgroup within the broader social group of Madheshi Dalits.[17] At the time of the 2011 Nepal census, 109,079 people (0.4% of the population of Nepal) were Dhobi. The frequency of Dhobis by province was as follows:

The frequency of Dhobis was higher than national average (0.4%) in the following districts:[18]

Notable people

See also


  1. ^ Amritha Mondal, ed. (6 April 2021). Owning Land,Being Women Inheritance and Subjecthood in India. Bibiliographic publication. ISBN 9783110690361.
  2. ^ R N Hadimani, ed. (1984). The politics of poverty. Ashish Publication. p. 184. ISBN 9780391032644.
  3. ^ Ranabir samaddar, ed. (2009). State of Justice in India. Sage publication. p. 55. ISBN 9788132104193.
  4. ^ Channa, Subhadra Mitra. 1991. "Caste, 'Jati' and Enthnicity [sic]—Some Reflections Based on a Case Study of the Dhobis." Indian Anthropologist 21(2):39-55. JSTOR 41919653.
  5. ^ "Calling People 'Harijan' or 'Dhobi' Is Offensive: Supreme Court". thewire.in. Retrieved 2 October 2023.
  6. ^ Suresh Kokate, ed. (7 March 2007). The Social and the Symbolic. SAGE Publication. pp. 295–310. ISBN 9788132101178. Sathiriya Maratiya Parit
  7. ^ "Ān̲antaraṅkar nāṭkur̲ippu: āyvu". Tamil̲iyal Tur̲ai, Putuvaip Palkalaik Kal̲akam. 4 October 1991 – via Google Books.
  8. ^ Soundarapandian, ed. (1995). Right hand history. Department of Archeology. p. 108.
  9. ^ Sivamathi, ed. (2006). Spiritual repository. Sura Publication. p. 244. ISBN 9788174789440. The fiery goddess became known as Draupadi Amman
  10. ^ Ganapathy Raman, ed. (1986). Worship of idols in Tirunelveli. Thirumagal Publication. p. 113.
  11. ^ a b Compendium 2016 socialjustice.nic.in
  12. ^ "National Commission for Backward Classes" (PDF). ncbc.nic.in.
  13. ^ "Assam – Data Highlights: The Scheduled Castes." 2001 Census of India. 2001.
  14. ^ "Census data" (PDF). Retrieved 15 April 2023.
  15. ^ "Indian Kanoon". Retrieved 15 April 2023.
  16. ^ "central list of OBCs Uttar Pradesh". National Commission for Backward Classes, India.
  17. ^ Population Monograph of Nepal, Volume II [1]
  18. ^ "2011 Nepal Census, District Level Detail Report" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 14 March 2023. Retrieved 10 April 2023.