History and origin
The Makrani of Gujarat are descendants of Baluchs who were brought to Saurashtra as mercenaries. They are still distributed in the former princely states of Kathiawar. These Baluch soldiers came from the Makran region of Baluchistan. They now speak Gujarati, while some Makrani also of have knowledge of Urdu. They are one of three communities found in Gujarat, that claim to have originated in Baluchistan. The Makrani are now distinct from the Sulaymani Baloch, another community of Baloch found in Gujarat. While in Pakistan, the term Makrani in Pakistan tends to be used as synonym for Siddi, the Gujarat Makrani also have no connection with the Siddi community, as they are ethnic Baluchs with no historic connection with Africa.. The Makrani group in Pakistan have traditions suggesting descent from African slaves. Genotype data from 102 individuals showed an average 25% African ancestry with significant diversity.
The Makrani are sub-divided into a number of clans, the main ones being the Askani, Baluch, Umarzai, Rind-Baluch, Mulkajee and Gudizai. All of them enjoy equal status, and there is no system of gotra exogamy. Many Makrani are still employed by the state police, while others are mainly farmers. The Makrani Jamat, their caste association is extremely active in community affairs.
- People of India Gujarat Volume XXI Part Two edited by R.B Lal, P.B.S.V Padmanabham, G Krishnan & M Azeez Mohideen pages 828–833
- People of India Gujarat Volume XXI Part Two edited by R.B Lal, P.B.S.V Padmanabham, G Krishnan & M Azeez Mohideen pages 828-833
- Laso-Jadart R., Harmant C., Quach H., Zidane N., Tyler-Smith C., Mehdi Q., Ayub Q., Quintana-Murci L., Patin E. (2017) The genetic legacy of the Indian Ocean slave trade: recent admixture and post-admixture selection in the Makranis of Pakistan. Am. J. Hum. Genet ., 101, 977–984.