A pandit or pundit (both pronounced //; Sanskrit: पण्डित paṇḍita) is a scholar and a teacher, particularly one skilled in the Sanskrit language, who has mastered the four Vedic scriptures, Hindu rituals, Hindu law, religion, music, and/or philosophy under a Guru in a Gurukul or has been tutored under the ancient Vedic Guru-Shishya academic tradition. The English loan word pundit is derived from it but has been used to broadly refer to any of the following: Siddhas, Siddhars, Naths, Ascetics, Sadhus, or Yogis.
In the usage of the word, "Pandit", synonymous to "Purohits", refers to and they claim to be Hindu, almost a Brahmin, who has memorized a substantial portion of the Vedas, along with the corresponding rhythms and melodies for chanting religious verses or singing them during prayers or rituals.
Pundit is been often used for experts and intellectuals with importance in the media.
Notable people bearing the surname "Pandit"
- Chandrakant Pandit (Maharashtraian)
- Farah Pandith (Kashmiri)
- Giridhari Lal Pandit (Kashmiri)
- Mohammad Shafi Pandit (Kashmiri)
- Lalita Pandit (Kashmiri)
- Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit (Kashmiri)
- Raaj Kumar- real name was Kulbhushan Pandit (Kashmiri)
- Jatin Lalit (Jatin Pandit and Lalit Pandit) (Rajasthani)
- Vikram Pandit (Maharashtrian)
- Shrradha Pandit (Rajasthani/Hindi/Haryanvi)
- Shweta Pandit (Rajasthani/Hindi/Haryanvi)
- Yash Pandit (Rajasthani/Hindi/Haryanvi)
- Devaki Pandit (Maharashtrian)
- This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.