From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Total population
approx. 323,000
Regions with significant populations
 India 300,000
 Bangladesh 23,000
Meitei, English
Related ethnic groups
Meitei, Sheikh, Syed, Mughal, Pathan

The Pangals[1][better source needed], also pronounced as Pangans are the minority ethnic group of people reside in Northeast India (Manipur, Assam, Tripura and Nagaland) and also found in Bangladesh. Pangals are also known as Meitei-Pangal or Manipuri Muslim. Its one of the Indigenous Community of Manipur.


Manipur was an ancient kingdom known by different names from time to time.;It was known by Kangleipak, Meitreibak or Mecklee before Modern name Manipur came. Its first historical king was Nongda Lairen Pakhangba of 33-154 AD. Muslims of Manipur are historically called Pangal or Meitei-Pangal which derives from "Pang" which was a Tai cognate tribe, although it may derive from "Banga", from where they came in the early seventh century.1 The word “Pangal” but the terms “Pang” and “Pangal” or Pangal existed in Manipur (formerly Poirei or Meitrabak or Mekhli/Mughlai or Kathe) since the seventh century. “Pangal” simply means “Manipuri Muslims”, as they follow Islam. They are also known as Meitei-Pangal indicating the extent of acculturation and assimilation with the Meitei culture.

The Muslims of Manipur were result of two Muslim migrations in 1606 and 1724. Manipur provided shelter to Shah Shuja, the Mughal prince who fled (and was pursued) to save himself from the wrath of his brother Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb. According to Henry Rule Kathe, Muslims are the result of intermixing (melting pot) of Muslims coming in different eras from different directions – Bengal, Arakan, Cachar and Manipur itself. Silk-spinning was a trade widely practised by them.[2]

The Muslim Pangals of Manipur devastated and were taken as slaves by the invading Burmese armies.[3]


Their present population is 239886, making up 8.40% of the state of Manipur population as per 2011 census. The Pangals are mainly concentrated in and around Imphal, the capital of Manipur. There is large number of pangals live in Cachar in Assam, Hojai in Assam, Komolpur in Tripura and Bangladesh. It is believed that the ancestors of the Pangals settled in this region are migrated from Manipur during the seven years devastation also known as Chahi-Taret Khuntakpa, the black period in the history of Manipur when Burmese invasions of Assam and their conquest of Manipur around 1815 AD.

Family titles[edit]

Today there are more than 50 Muslim family title names. They are an indigenous and peace-loving community. Traditional dress for men is Lungis and pajamas, and for women is Kurtis, Shalwar and phanek. Both also wear western attire. They maintained their own identity though they assimilated and intermixed with the other local communities.


According to British writers, Manipuri Muslims (Pangals) were divided into four groups or clans- Shaikh, Syed, Mughal (Chaghtai Turks) and Pathan (Afghans) which have been further subdivided into 77 sub-clans or family titles. viz. Sajabam, Nongjai, Singa, Makak, Basai, Chesabam, Maibam, Lunggai, Wangmayum, Phundreimayum, Yumkhaibam, Sangomsumbam, Dolai pubam, Fisabam, Moiching, Moinam, Thoubal mayum, Khulakpam, Komolmayum, Makakmayum, Bogimayum,Nongsaibam, Pukhrimayum, Aribam,Tampak mayum, Chesam, Thoubal, kontha, kainou etc., ......

See also[edit]

  • Hui Legends of The Companions of The Prophet, China Heritage,20 Sep 2010,
  • For early Meitei-Arab, Meitei-Mughal connection, see Thang Ta: A journey (Through the history of Kangleipak) from an ancient combat art to a popular modern sport- Part 4 by Dr. Hanjabam Cha Barun ( Sports.Martial_ Arts.Thang_Ta_A_ journey_4).
  • For Muslim settlement since 7th century see History Of Migration In the Valley Of Manipur by Dr. Oinam Ranjit Singh (
  • (Manipuri_Muslims_Socially_Speaking...manipur)
  • › manipur (Evolution of Clan System Among Manipuri Muslims)
  • Manipur, Wikipedia
  • Muslims of Manipur, Wikipedia
  • Manipuri Muslims: Socially Speaking


  1. Salam Irene, 2010, The Muslims of Manipur, Kalpaz: New Delhi, pp. 22, 31.
  2. A. Hakim Shah, 2008, The Manipur Governance to Meitei-Pangal during 1606-1949, Pearl: Imphal, p. 29.
  3. Salam Irene, pp. 31–32.
  4.; Sa'ad ibn abi Waqqas- Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia; Hui Legends of The Companions of The Prophet, China Heritage,20 Sep 2010,
  5. Farooque Ahmed, Silk Route Trade and Manipuri Muslims, in South Asia Politics, vol. 7, April 2009, New Delhi, p. 21.
  6. See for Nasir Muhammad of Sarail (N.R. Roychoudhury, 1983, Tripura Through the Ages, New Delhi: Sterling Publishers, p. 29).
  7. Dr. O. Ranjit Singh, History Of Migration In the Valley Of Manipur (
  8. John Peter Wade, 1800/1927 ed. by Benudhar Sharma, An Account of Assam, Sibsagar, p. 297.
  9. Dr. O. Ranjit Singh (gives the name in distortion as Milaya Shek).
  10. Kheiruddin Khullakpam, 1997, Turko-Afghangi Chada Naoda (Descendants of Turko-Afghans), Circles: Lilong-Manipur, pp. 14–15.
  11. Suhas Chatterjee, 2000, Socio Economic History of South Assam, Jaipur, p. 128; Salam Irene, p. 32.
  12. Janab Khan, pp. 53, 54.
  13. Ibid, p. 64.
  14. South Asia Politics, op. cit, vol.9, Nov. 2010, p. 23.
  15. Kheiruddin Khullakpam, 1997, Turko-Afghangi Chada Naoda, p. 161.
  16. Suhas Chatterjee, 2000, A Socio Economic History of South Assam, Jaipur: Printwell, p. 121.
  17. Ibid.
  18. L.I. Singh & N. Khelchandra, 1989, Cheitharol Kumbaba, Imphal: Manipur Sahitya Parishad, p. 45.
  19. Deb Barma Samarendra Chandra, 1927, Tripurar Smriti, pp. 209–10; N.R. Roychoudhury, 1983, Tripura Through the Ages, New Delhi: Sterling Publishers, pp. 28–29.(The letter was written originally in Persian and is translated from Bengali rendering).
  20. N.R. Roychoudhury, p. 27.
  21. Ibid, pp. 28, 29 ft. 1 (quoting the original letter in Deb Barma Samarendra Chandra, 1927, Tripurar Smriti, pp. 209–10); S.C. Dutta, 1984, The North East and the Mughals, Calcutta, p. 41. (According to traditions in Tripura, Govinda Manikya after losing throne to Nakshatra Roy, also fled to Arakan where he met Shah Shuja who presented the former a precious sword and a diamond, and thus friendship was established. It must be after this event, if the tradition is true, in around 1660 that Shuja made way for Tripura).
  22. A. Hakim Shah, p. 56.
  23. Dr. J. P. Wade, p. 297.
  24. South Asia Politics, op. cit, vol.9, Nov. 2010, p. 23.
  25. R.K. Sanahal Singh, 1983, Pangal Thorkapa, Liberty Publication: Imphal, p. 43; O. Bhogeswor Singh & Janab Khan, 1973, Nongsamei Puya, Imphal, p. 92 (give the names of Mughal princes arriving from Makak/Mughal NE India in 1679 as Sunarphul and Lakhayerphul following Manipuri historiography).
  26. L.I. Singh & Khelchandra, 1989, Cheitharol Kumbaba, p. 36.
  27. Nongchupharam (ms.)
  28. Dr. N. Debendra Singh, 2005, Identities of Migrated People, Manipur University: Centre for Manipuri studies, pp. 45, 47.
  29. L.I.Singh & Khelchandra,Cheitharol Kumbaba, p. 35.
  30. O. Bhogeswor & Janab Khan, Nongsamei Puya, p. 100.
  31. B. Kulachandra Sharma, 1997, Meitrabakki Khunthok Khundarol, Imphal, pp. 114–15; B. Kulachandra & Dr. Badr-uddin, 1992, Meitei Pangal Hourakpham, Imphal, pp. 15–143; Kh. Kheiruddin, 1997, op. cit., pp. 140–199; Salam Irene, pp. 90–91; Field-work survey.
  32. Salam Irene, p. 221.

External links[edit]