Sheikh Sarwari are a Muslim community found in the state of Uttar Pradesh in India. While in Pakistan they have settled in Karachi. They are a sub-group within the larger Faqir ethnic group of North India, and are also known as Peerahi, while in Punjab, they are known as Bharai.
Like other Faqir groups, the Sarwari started off as a Sufi order, the Sarwari Qadiriyya. The word sarvar means ‘leader’, ‘chief’, and ‘master’ in the Persian language, and the Sarwari order was said to be founded by Sultan Bahoo, the famous Sufi of Punjab. Over the time, the Sarwari have evolved into a distinct caste grouping, bound by the rules of endogamy. Their traditional occupation is beaten of drums at weddings and begging. The Sarwari are entirely landless and now increasing employed as agricultural workers or urban daily wage earners.
In terms of distribution, they are concentrated in the western districts of Uttar Pradesh such as Moradabad, Jyotiba Phule Nagar, Bijnor, Rampur and Bareilly. The Sarwari live in multi-caste villages, but occupy their own distinct quarters. They speak both Urdu and the Khari Boli dialect, and are entirely Sunni..
- Abun-Nasr, Jamil M. "The Special Sufi Paths (Taqiras)." Muslim Communities of Grace: The Sufi Brotherhoods in Islamic Religious Life. New York: Columbia UP, 2007. 86-96.