Langha caste

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The Langha (Rajasthani: लंघा (Devanagari) لنگھا (Perso-Arabic)) are a Muslim community found in the states of Gujarat and Rajasthan in India.[1] They are unrelated to the Langah tribe of southern Pakistan.[2]

History and origin[edit]

The Langha and related Manganiar are both communities of folk musicians, and have two sub-divisions, the Sonia Langha and Sarengia Langha. These sub-divisions are based on the use of musical instruments used, the Sonia Langha play the shanai (a type of piped instrument) at wedding ceremonies, and the Sarengia play the sarangee. The two groups are endogamous, and are further divided into clans.

According to their traditions, they were Jaat, Rajputs, whose ancestor converted to Islam. They are said to have originated in Sindh, and settled in the village of Baranwa in Barmer District.[2]

Present circumstances[edit]

The community sing, play music and entertain the Sindhi-Sipahi, a community of Muslim Rajputs, who act as their jajmans (patrons). They are found in the districts of Barmer, Jaisalmer and Jodhpur, and speak Marwari.

The community are endogamous and practice clan exogamy. Their main clans are Khaltera, Pannu, Janjarika, Kalrika and Toarika. At times of birth, marriage or any family festivity of their Sindhi-Sipahi patrons, the Langha musicians are in attendance to evoke the right mood with songs of the desert and many specially composed songs to praise the patron and his family. During the last fifteen years, many Langha have become part of the entertainment industry, and have toured the world as part of the “Festival of India” tours organized by the Indian government.[2]

Famous Langhas[edit]

  • Aslam Khan Langa, Aslam Khan Langa has performed live with A R Rahman and along with his group, was voted as finalist (through wild-card entry) for the popular reality TV show India's Got Talent and with a 2 million pound prize fund, it is very popular.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ People of India Gujarat Volume XXI Part Two edited by R.B. Lal, P.B.S.V Padmanabham, G Krishnan & M Azeez Mohideen pages 755-760
  2. ^ a b c People of India Rajasthan Volume XXXVIII Part Two edited by B.K. Lavania, D. K Samanta, S K Mandal & N.N. Vyas pages 572 to 575 Popular Prakashan