Jump to content

Kashmiri Hindus

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
(Redirected from Kashmiri Hindu)

Kashmiri Hindus
Hari Parbat Temple in Jammu and Kashmir.
Sacred language

Ethnic language

Other languages
Hindi, Urdu, English
Kashmir Shaivism
Shaivism, Vaishnavism and Shaktism
Related ethnic groups
Kashmiri people, Kashmiri Muslims

Kashmiri Hindus are ethnic Kashmiris who practice Hinduism and are native to the Kashmir Valley of India.[1] With respect to their contributions to Indian philosophy, Kashmiri Hindus developed the tradition of Kashmiri Shaivism.[2] After their exodus from the Kashmir Valley in the wake of the Kashmir insurgency in the 1990s, most Kashmiri Hindus are now settled in the Jammu division of Jammu and Kashmir and other parts of the country. The largest group of Kashmiri Hindus are the Kashmiri Pandits.



During the reign of Ashoka (304–232 BCE), Kashmir became a part of the Maurya Empire and Buddhism was introduced in Kashmir. During this period, many stupas, some shrines dedicated to Shiva, and the city of Srinagari (Srinagar) were built. Kanishka (127–151 CE), an emperor of the Kushan Empire, conquered Kashmir and established the new city of Kanishkapur.[3]


The Karkota dynasty (625–855 CE) ruled over the Kashmir and parts of northern Indian subcontinent and their rule saw political expansion, economic prosperity and emergence of Kashmir as a centre of culture and scholarship.[4][5] Lalitaditya Muktapida (724–760 CE) was a powerful ruler of the Karkota dynasty of Kashmir region in the Indian subcontinent. After the seventh century, significant developments took place in Kashmiri Hinduism. In the centuries that followed, Kashmir produced many poets, philosophers, and artists who contributed to Sanskrit literature and Hindu religion. Among notable scholars of this period was Vasugupta (c. 875–925 CE) who wrote the Shiva Sutras which laid the foundation for a monistic Shaiva system called Kashmir Shaivism.[6]

After the dawn of the Lohara dynasty, Islam had penetrated into countries outside Kashmir and in the absence of support from Hindus, who were in the majority, Rinchana needed the support of the Kashmiri Muslims. Shah Mir's coup on Rinchana's successor secured Muslim rule and the rule of his dynasty in Kashmir.[7]


The largest community within the Kashmiri Hindus are the Kashmiri Pandits (Kashmiri Brahmins),[8][9] who are divided into several gotras,[10] such as the priests (gor or bhasha Bhatta), astrologers (Zutshi), and workers (Karkun).[11]

The Wani are historically Banias, with subcastes, such as the Kesarwani.[12] During the Mughal era, many Kesarwanis migrated to other parts of India such as Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh.[13]

According to officials, 98,600 Kashmiri Hindus were issued domicile certificates of Jammu and Kashmir up to the end of June 2021. They further state, "90,430 domicile certificates were issued to displaced Kashmiri Pandits, while 2,340 families of displaced Kashmiri Pandits were registered as fresh migrants. Of these, 8,170 individuals received the domicile certificate."[14]

On 16 May 2020, Order 52 was issued by the Jammu and Kashmir Department of Disaster Management, Relief, Rehabilitation and Reconstruction (JK DMRRR) which states that: "Bonafide migrants and bonafide displaced persons who are not yet registered with the relief and rehabilitation commissioner (migrant), Jammu and Kashmir, can apply before the competent authority for registration for purpose of issuance of a domicile certificate only." This is as long as one of the necessary documents is provided. The timeframe for registration (and claiming domicile) of Kashmiri migrants and displaced persons was later extended for the final time up to 15 May 2022.[15]


Under the rule of Sultan Sikander Butshikan in the 14th century CE, many Kashmiri Hindus were forcibly converted to Islam.[16][17] They began to leave the valley in much greater numbers in the 1990s during the eruption of militancy following large scale militarization of Valley.

Notable people[edit]

This is a list of notable Kashmiri Hindus.

See also[edit]


  • The Hindu History of Kashmir by Horace Hayman Wilson ISBN 9788186714300, 8186714308
  • Kashmir Hindu Religious Culture By Chaman Lal Gadoo ISBN 9788191005714, 8191005719
  • Hindus of Kashmir - A Genocide Forgotten by Bansi Pandit ISBN 9798586697035
  • The Hindu-Buddhist Sculpture of Ancient Kashmir and Its Influences By John Siudmak ISBN 9789004248328, 9004248323
  • Kashmir: Its Aborigines and Their Exodusby Colonel Tej K Tikoo  ISBN 9781935501589, 1935501585 ISBN 9781942426417, 1942426410
  • Kasheer - A Diabolical Betrayal of Kashmiri Hindus By Sahana Vijayakumar ISBN 9781942426417
  • Genocide of Hindus in Kashmir[24] by Suruchi Prakashan
  • The Infidel Next Door By Rajat Kanti Mitra ISBN 9781088402733, 1088402739
  • The Odyssey Of Kashmiri Pandits Destination-Homeland-Panun Kashmir by Dr M. L. Bhat ISBN 9781947586253, 1947586254


  1. ^ Ling, Huping (2008). Emerging Voices: Experiences of Underrepresented Asian Americans. Rutgers University Press. p. 126. ISBN 9780813543420. Kashmiri Muslims represent the majority population in Kashmir Valley, while Kashmiri Hindus represent a small but significant minority community.
  2. ^ Snedden, Christopher (15 September 2015). Understanding Kashmir and Kashmiris. Hurst. p. 39. ISBN 9781849046220.
  3. ^ Chatterjee, Suhas (1998). Indian Civilization and Culture. M.D. Publications Pvt. Ltd. ISBN 978-81-7533-083-2.
  4. ^ Larson, Gerald James (2007). "Nagas, Monks, Tantrics and Poets". In Pal, Pratapaditya; Ames, Frank (eds.). The arts of Kashmir. Asia Society ; 5 Continents. pp. 36–37.
  5. ^ Witzel, Michael (2016). "Kashmiri Brahmins under the Karkota, Utpala and Lohara Dynasties, 625-1101 CE". In Franco, Eli; Ratié, Isabelle (eds.). Around Abhinavagupta: Aspects of the Intellectual History of Kashmir from the Ninth to the Eleventh Century. Leipziger Studien zu Kultur und Geschichte Süd- und Zentralasiens. Münster, Germany. pp. 609–643. ISBN 978-3-643-90697-7.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  6. ^ Art, Los Angeles County Museum of; Pal, Pratapaditya (1 January 1986). Indian Sculpture: Circa 500 B.C.-A.D. 700. University of California Press. pp. 51. ISBN 978-0-520-06477-5.
  7. ^ Unesco (1 January 1998). History of Civilizations of Central Asia. UNESCO. pp. 306. ISBN 978-92-3-103467-1.
  8. ^ Mufti, Gulzar (24 September 2013). Kashmir in Sickness and in Health. Partridge Publishing. p. 121. ISBN 9781482809985. Hindus of the Kashmir Valley, known as Pandits, are mostly upper caste Brahmins.
  9. ^ Kachru, Onkar (1998). Jammu, Kashmir, Ladakh. Atlantic Publishers. p. 75. ISBN 9788185495514. Taking into account decennial growth rates and migration patterns, the 1981 census data suggests that there would have been 161,000 Hindus, most of them Kashmiri Pandits, in the valley in 1991.
  10. ^ South Asian Language Review, Volumes 3-4. Creative Publishers. 1993. p. 64. 'Kashmiri Brahmins are said to have originally belonged to only six gotras, -By intermarriage with other Brahmins the number of gotras multiplied to 199' ( Koul 1924).
  11. ^ Nagano, Yasuhiko; Ikari, Yasuke (1993). From Vedic Altar to Village Shrine: Towards an Interface Between Indology and Anthropology. National Museum of Ethnology. p. 186. Retrieved 29 September 2017. The Hindus belong with few exceptions to the Brahman caste and are known as 'Pandits', while in other parts of India they are generally called 'Kashmiri Pandits'. These Kashmiri Brahmans are divided into three subcastes consisting, namely, of priests (gor or bhasha Bhatta), astrologers (jyotishi), and workers (karkun).
  12. ^ Rajghatta, Chidanand (28 August 2019). "View: Most Pakistanis are actually Indians". The Economic Times. Retrieved 22 September 2019. The Indic influence extends across caste and clan. The last name of Burhan Wani, the slain jihadist now deified by separatists, is derived from the Hindu bania caste, and it further devolved into specific subcastes depending on what they traded in — for instance, those who trade in saffron became Kesarwani.
  13. ^ Singh, K.S. (1998). India's Communities, Volume 5. Oxford University Press. p. 1663. ISBN 9780195633542. A community sometimes referred to as Kesarwani, they are reported from Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh. In Madhya Pradesh and Bihar, they provide histories of migration and origin which are somewhat similar. In Bihar, the Kesarwani or Kesri Bania believe that their community name indicates their original occupation of trade in kesar (saffron). They were originally the inhabitants of Kashmir who migrated to different parts of India during Mughal rule.
  14. ^ "J&K: Over 98k Kashmiri Migrants Issued Domicile Certificates till End of June". News18. PTI. 13 August 2021.
  15. ^ Registration of bonafide Migrants or displaced persons for the purpose of issuance of domicile certificate - regarding Govt Order No:52-JK (DMRRR) of 2020. Govt of Jammu and Kashmir Department of Disaster Management, Relief, Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Civil Secretariat Jammu (DMRRR). 16 May 2020.
  16. ^ Kaw, Maharaj Krishen (2001). Kashmiri Pandits. APH Publishing. pp. 25–26. ISBN 9788176482363. Then came the fanatical and tyrannical rule of Sultan Sikander, the iconoclast (1398-1420 CE) who let loose a sort of hell against the non-Muslims through forced conversions and widespread destruction of their religious shrines all over the Valley. Possibly, by this time, the lower Hindu castes had got converted to Islam with the help of passionate zeal of the Islamic missionaries moving freely among the socially backward and rigid Hindu caste hierarchies already shaken by the spread of the Buddhist creed when Kashmir was from a considerable period one of the staunchest centres of the anti-caste movement of the Buddhist cult.
  17. ^ Khan, Ghulam Hassan (1973). The Kashmiri Mussulman. p. 41. This community prior to their conversion was divided amongst the Brahmin, Kshatria, Vaish, and Shudr castes.
  18. ^ a b Thomas-Symonds, Nicklaus (30 July 2010). Attlee: A Life in Politics. Bloomsbury Publishing. p. 182. ISBN 978-0-85771-066-6.
  19. ^ Singh, Kuldeep (2 December 1998). "Obituary: P.N. Haksar". www.independent.co.uk. Retrieved 16 July 2013.
  20. ^ Mohan Kumar (1981). Sir Tej Bahadur Sapru: a political biography. Vipul Prakashan. Retrieved 25 March 2007. Even now there are many distinguished scholars of Persian among the Kashmiri Brahmins in India. Sir Tej Bahadur Sapru and Raja Narendranath to mention two of them.
  21. ^ "Kashmiri Pandit soldiers to the fore". Hindustan Times. 12 February 2013. Retrieved 9 January 2021.
  22. ^ @sanjivbhatt (14 April 2018). "985204040500957185" (Tweet). Retrieved 23 March 2022 – via Twitter.
  23. ^ Dean, Riaz (2019). Mapping The Great Game: Explorers, Spies & Maps in Nineteenth-century Asia. Oxford: Casemate (UK). pp. 41, 57. ISBN 978-1-61200-814-1.
  24. ^ "Genocide of Hindus in Kashmir". Suruchi Prakashan. 1991.

External links[edit]