Wallah, or -wala or -vala (wali fem.), derived from Hindustani, Gujarati, Bengali or Marathi (Suffix forming an adjectival compound with a noun or an agentive sense with a verb), an Indian surname or suffix indicating a person involved in some kind of activity, where they come from or what they wear (Topiwala), for example:
- Dabbawala, lunch box deliverer
- Chaiwala, a boy or young man who serves tea
- Rickshawala, a rickshaw driver
- Punkawallah, the servant who keeps the punkah or fan going on hot nights
- Lep wallah, a cotton carder
Wala is also used to indicate a specific object or thing among several.
- chota wala, the small one
- dusra wala, the second one
- agla wala, the next one
In British military jargon of the first half of the 20th century, a "base wallah" is someone employed at a military base, or with a job far behind the front lines.
- R. S. McGregor, ed. (1997). The Oxford Hindi-English Dictionary. Oxford University Press. p. 915. ISBN 978-0-19-864339-5.
- Clements, J. Clancy (1996). The Genesis of a Language: The formation and development of Korlai Portuguese. John Benjamins Publishing Company. pp. 139–. ISBN 978-90-272-7618-6.
- Barz, Richard Keith; Siegel, Jeff (1988). Language Transplanted: The Development of Overseas Hindi. Otto Harrassowitz Verlag. pp. 165–. ISBN 978-3-447-02872-1.
- Anand (February 5, 2006). "Reflections of a language-wala". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 2007-07-01. Retrieved 2014-05-17.
- Edward Fraser and John Gibbons (1925). Soldier and Sailor Words and Phrases. Routledge, London, p.18.