|Regions with significant populations|
|• Pakistan • India|
|• Urdu • Hindi • Awadhi|
|Related ethnic groups|
|• Halwai • Bhatiara • Nanbai • Shaikh|
The Muslim Halwai (Urdu: حلواى ) are a Muslim community found in various part of India and Pakistan, mainly in Uttar Pradesh. They have their ancestral backgrounds from Arabian Adnani Tribes. Halwai caste, > Halva means sweets in Hindi and Halvai or Halwai are sweet makers. Their preferred self-designation is Shaikh. They are also known as Siddiqui, Faridi and Adnani.
History and origin
The Halwai are a community associated with the manufacture of sweetmeats. Their name comes from the Arabic word Halva, which means a sweetmeat. The Muslim Halwai community came in India with Humayoon from Iran as his soldiers. They belong to the Shaikh category and they have their ancestral backgrounds from Arabian Adnani tribes.Their ancestors were not Hindu it proves their ancestral backgrounds and also their sweet products as Halwai,Halwai e sohaan,Mansoor,Chashni,Gazak,Lauzeena etc.the words belong to either Arabian or Percian.
They have the following subdivision, the Purbi or eastern and Pachaon or western group, and speak Urdu, as well as local dialects of Hindi. These sub-divisions are further divided into clans, known as biradaris, which claim descent from a common ancestor. Important biradaris include the Tobacco Traders,The biscuit Traders and the Sweet Makers but Halwai is common among them. Marriages are preferred within the biradari, and only rarely will take place outside the community.
They are a landless community, involved in the selling of sweetmeats, tobacco, and well as the occupation of dyeing clothes. Members of the community members have taken up jobs in government and private service. They are largely an urban community, living in their residential quarters. Almost all older cities in North India and Pakistan have a Halwai Mohalla The Muslim Halwai have their own registered committee with name of All India Muslim Halwai biradari committee to deal with matters relating to the community. Haji Mahmood Ahmad is a founder and President of all India Muslim halwai biradari committee.
- People of India Uttar Pradesh Volume XLII Part Three by K S Singh page 1042 Manohar Publications.
- People of India Uttar Pradesh Volume XLII Part Three by K S Singh page 1240 Manohar Publications.