Can a Rajput marry a Ravana Rajput


Social community of South Asia
For the 1982 film, see Rajput (film).

An 1876 engraving of the Hindu Rajputs of Delhi from the Illustrated London News
ReligionsHinduism, Islam, Christianity[Verification failed] and Sikhism
languagesHindi, Haryanvi, Marwari, Mewari, Bhojpuri, Gujarati, Maithili, Sindhi, Punjabi, Urdu, Bundeli, Marathi, Chhattisgarhi, Odia, Dogri and Pahari
regionRajasthan, Haryana, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, East Punjab, West Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Jammu and Kashmir, Azad Kashmir, Bihar, Odisha, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Sindh

Rajput (from Sanskrit Raja Putra, "Son of a King") is a large group of castes, relatives and local groups who share social status and ideology of genealogical ancestry and originate from the Indian subcontinent. The term Rajput encompasses various patrilineal clans that have historically been associated with war: several clans claim Rajput status, although not all claims are universally recognized. According to modern scholars, almost all of the Rajput clans came from rural or pastoral communities.

The term "Rajput" did not acquire its current meaning until the 16th century, although it is also used anachronistically to describe the earlier lineages that emerged in northern India from the 6th century onwards. In the 11th century the term "Rajaputra"appeared as a non-hereditary term for royal officials. Gradually, the Rajputs evolved into a social class that included people from different ethnic and geographical backgrounds. During the 16th and 17th centuries, membership of this class became largely hereditary, albeit new Claims to Rajput status continued in the later centuries, and by the 20th century, several Rajput-ruled kingdoms played an important role in many regions of central and northern India.

The Rajput population and the former Rajput states live in North, West, Central and East India as well as in South and East Pakistan. These areas include Rajasthan, Haryana, Gujarat, East Punjab, West Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu, Uttarakhand, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Sindh.



Hindu Rajput cultivators from Dehra Dhoon The Indian people by Watson and Kaye.

The origin of the Rajputs has been a much debated topic among historians. Modern historians agree that Rajputs consisted of the mixing of different social groups, including shudras and tribesmen.

British colonial writers characterized them as the descendants of foreign invaders such as the Scythians or the Hunas, and believed that the Agnikula myth was invented to hide their foreign origins. According to this theory, the Rajputs came into being when these invaders were added to the Kshatriya category in the 6th or 7th century after the collapse of the Gupta Empire. While many of these colonial authors propagated this theory of foreign origin in order to legitimize colonial rule, the theory was also supported by some Indian scholars such as D. R. Bhandarkar. Historian C. V. Vaidya believed that the Rajputs were descendants of the ancient Vedic Aryan kshatriyas. A third group of historians, including Jai Narayan Asopa, suggested that the Rajputs were Brahmins who became rulers.

However, recent research suggests that the Rajputs came from different ethnic and geographical backgrounds, as well as from different Varnas, including Shudras. Almost all of the Rajput clans came from rural or pastoral communities.

The root word "Rajaputra"(literally" son of a king ") first appears as a term for royal officials in 11th century Sanskrit inscriptions. According to some scholars, it was reserved for the immediate relatives of a king; others believe that it was used by a larger group of high-ranking people Men. The derived word "Rajput" meant "horse soldier", "soldier", "village chief" or "subordinate chief" before the 15th century. Individuals with whom the word "Rajput" was associated prior to the 15th century were considered Varna Samkara ("mixed caste origin") and inferior to Kshatriya. Over time, the term "Rajput" denoted a hereditary political status that was not necessarily very high: the term could denote a wide range of ranks, from the actual son of a king to the landowner with the lowest rank.

According to scholars, during the Middle Ages, "the political entities of India were probably most frequently ruled by men of very little birth" and this "could equally apply to many clans of" Rajputs "in northern India". Burton Stein explains that this process of granting rulers, who are often of minor social origin, a "clean" rank over social mobility in the Hindu Varna system, is one of the explanations for the longevity of the unique Indian civilization.

Gradually, the term Rajput referred to a social class that was formed when the various tribal and nomadic groups became land aristocrats and transformed into the ruling class. These groups adopted the title of "Rajput" as part of their claim to higher social positions and ranks. Early medieval literature suggests that this newly formed Rajput class comprised people from multiple castes. Thus, Rajput identity is not the result of common ancestry. Rather, it arose when various social groups of medieval India tried to legitimize their newly acquired political power by claiming Kshatriya status. These groups identified themselves as Rajputs in different ways at different times. Thus modern scholars summarize that Rajputs had been an "open status group" since the 8th century, mostly illiterate, who claimed to be reincarnations of the ancient Indian kshatriyas - a claim that had no historical basis. In addition, this unsubstantiated claim of Kshatriya status showed a sharp contrast to the classic Varna of Kshatriyas as portrayed in Hindu literature, in which Kshatriyas are portrayed as an educated and urban clan. The historian Thomas R. Metcalf mentions the opinion of the Indian scholar K. M. Panikkar, who also considers the famous Rajput dynasties of medieval India to come from non-Kshatriya castes.

During the Mughal era, "hypergame marriage" with the combination of service in the state army was another way a tribal family could convert to Rajput. This process required changing tradition, dressing, stopping window remarriage, etc. Such a marriage of a tribal family to a recognized but possibly poor Rajput family would ultimately allow the non-Rajput family to become Rajput. This marriage pattern also supports the fact that Rajput was an "open caste category" available to those who served the Mughals.

Rajput education continued into colonial times. Even in the 19th century, anyone from the "village landlord" to the "newly wealthy lower caste Shudra" could use Brahmins to retrospectively invent a genealogy, and within a few generations they would be accepted as Hindu Rajputs. This process would be reflected in the churches in northern India. This emergence of the Rajput community led to hypergamy and female infanticide, as was common in Hindu Rajput clans. Scientists refer to this as "Rajputization" which, like Sanskritization, was a mode of upward mobility, but differed from Sanskritization in other attributes such as method of worship, lifestyle, diet, social interaction, rules for women and marriage, and so on. German historian Hermann Kulke coined the term "Secondary Rajputization" to describe the process of members of a tribe trying to reconnect with the former chief of their tribe, who had already turned into a Rajput through Rajputization, and so himself Rajputs became.

Creation as a community

Rajputs of central India

Scientific opinions differ as to when the term Rajput acquired hereditary connotations and denoted a clan-based community. The historian Brajadulal Chattopadhyaya believed, based on his analysis of inscriptions (mainly from Rajasthan), that the term "in the 12th century"Rajaputra"has been associated with fortified settlements, related land holdings, and other features that later indicated Rajput status. According to Chattopadhyaya, the title acquired" an element of inheritance "from around 1300. A later study, September 11-14 Century inscriptions from West and Central India by Michael B. Bednar conclude that the designations such as "Rajaputra', 'Thakkura" and "Rauta"were not necessarily hereditary at that time.

Sociologists such as Sarah Farris and Reinhard Bendix state that the original Kshatriyas in the northwest, which existed in tiny kingdoms until the Moorish times, were an extremely cultured, educated, and intellectual group that threatened the intellectual monopoly of the Brahmins. According to Max Weber, ancient texts show that they were not subordinate to the Brahmins in religious matters. These kshatriyas were later not only undermined by the Brahmin priests of the time, but also replaced by the burgeoning community of Rajputs, who were illiterate and who worked for kings. Unlike the Kshatriyas, the Rajputs were generally illiterate, so their rise posed no threat to the intellectual monopoly of the Brahmins - and the Rajputs accepted the superiority of the educated Brahmin community.

Rajputs were involved in nomadic pastoralism, animal husbandry, and the cattle trade until much later than generally assumed. The 17th century chronicles of Munhata Nainsini i.e. Munhata Nainsi ri Khyat and Marwar ra Paraganan ri Vigat discuss disputes between Rajputs over cattle raids. In addition, folk deities of the Rajputs - Pabuji, Mallinath, Gogaji, and Ramdeo - were seen as protectors of the ranching communities. They also imply the Rajputs' struggle for supremacy over cattle and grazing land. The emergence of the Rajput community was the result of a gradual shift from mobile pastoral and tribal groups to sedentary rural groups. This required control of mobile resources for the expansion of agriculture, which in turn required kinship structures, warlike and marital alliances. Historical processes suggest that the Rajput community was created out of existing communities such as Bhils, Mers, Minas, Gujars, Jats, Raikas, in contrast to the colonial-era ethnographic accounts in which these communities claim a Rajput past.

During its inception, the Rajput class was quite assimilative, accepting people from a wide variety of lineages. However, by the late 16th century, it had become genealogically rigid based on the ideas of blood purity. Membership in the Rajput class was now largely hereditary and not acquired through military achievement. A major factor in this development was the consolidation of the Mughal Empire, whose rulers were very interested in genealogy. When the various Rajput chiefs became Mughal feduatoria, they no longer got into major conflicts with one another. This diminished the ability to gain prestige through military action and made hereditary prestige more important.

The word "Rajput" got its current meaning in the 16th century. During the 16th and 17th centuries, the Rajput rulers and their bards (charans) tried to legitimize the socio-political status of Rajput on the basis of descent and kinship. They fabricated genealogy that linked the Rajput families to the ancient dynasties and linked it to myths of origins that established their Kshatriya status and distanced them from their tribal and pastoral origins. This led to the emergence of what the Indologist Dirk Kolff calls the "Rajput Great Tradition", which only accepted hereditary claims to Rajput identity and promoted an idea of ​​elitism and exclusivity. The legendary epic poem Prithviraj Raso, depicting warriors from various Rajput clans as employees of Prithviraj Chauhan, promoted the feeling of unity among these clans. The text thus contributed to the consolidation of the Rajput identity by offering these clans a common history.

Despite these developments, migrant soldiers made new claims to Rajput status by the 19th century. In the 19th century, the colonial administrators of India imagined the Rajputs to be similar to the Anglo-Saxon knights. They compiled the Rajput genealogy to settle land disputes, measure castes and tribes, and make history. This genealogy became the basis for distinguishing between the "real" and the "false" Rajput clans.

William Rowe discusses an example of a Shudra caste - the Noniyas (Caste of Salt Makers) - from Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, and Bihar. A large part of this caste, which had become "Chauhan Rajputs" over three generations during the British Raj era. The richer or more advanced noniyas began forming the Sri Rajput Pacharni Sabha (Rajput Advancement Society) in 1898 and imitation of the Rajput lifestyle. They also began to wear sacred thread. Rowe states that at a historic caste meeting in 1936, every child in that Noniya section knew about their Rajput heritage. Similarly, Donald Attwood and Baviskar set an example of a caste of shepherds who were earlier shudras and successfully changed their status to Rajput and began to wear the sacred thread in the Raj era. They are now known as Sagar Rajputs. The scholars regard this example as one case among thousands.

The researchers give examples of the Rajputs of both departments of today's Uttarakhand - Garhwal and Kumaon - and show how they were formally Shudra or ritually low but had successfully integrated into the Rajput community at different times. These Kumaon Rajputs had successfully achieved Rajput identity during the reign of Chand Rajas, which ended in 1790. Likewise, it was shown by Gerald Berreman that these Garhwal Rajputs had a ritually low status until the 20th century.

Rajput kingdoms

See also: Rajput Resistance to Muslim Conquests and List of Rajput Dynasties and States

A royal Rajput procession depicted on a mural at Mehrangarh Fort in Jodhpur

The Rajput kingdoms were different: loyalty to one clan was more important than loyalty to the broader social grouping of Rajputs, meaning that one clan would fight another. This, and the internecine push for the position that took place when a clan leader (Raja) died, meant that Rajput politics were fluid and prevented the formation of a coherent Rajput empire.

The first great Rajput kingdom was the Kingdom of Mewar, ruled by Sisodia. However, the term "Rajput" was also used as an anachronistic term for leading war lines of the 11th and 12th centuries confronted by the invaders of the Ghaznavids and Ghurids such as the Pratiharas, the Chahamanas (from Shakambhari, Nadol and Jalor), the Tomaras were. the Chaulukyas, the Paramaras, the Gahadavalas and the Chandelas. Although Rajput identity did not exist at the time, these lines were classified as aristocratic Rajput clans in later times.

In the 15th century, the Muslim sultans of Malwa and Gujarat made joint efforts to defeat the Mewar ruler, Rana Kumbha, but both sultans were defeated. In 1518, the Kingdom of Rajput Mewar under Rana Sanga won a great victory over Sultan Ibrahim Lodhi of the Sultanate of Delhi, and after that Rana's influence extended to striking distance from Pilia Khar in Agra. Accordingly, Rana Sanga became the most respected indigenous contender for supremacy, but was defeated by the Mughal invader Babur in the Battle of Khanwa in 1527.

Legendary accounts have it that from AD 1200, many Rajput groups moved east towards the eastern Ganges plain and formed their own chiefs. These small Rajput kingdoms were scattered throughout the Gangetic plains in what is now Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. During this process there were minor clashes with local people and, in some cases, alliances were formed.Among these Rajput chiefs were the Bhojpur zamindars and the taluks of Awadh.

The immigration of Rajput clan chiefs to these parts of the Gangetic Plain also contributed to the agricultural appropriation of previously forested areas, particularly in southern Bihar. Some have linked this eastward expansion to the beginning of the Ghurid invasions in the west.

Villagers of Bihari Rajput watch Mallah fishermen.

As early as the 16th century, Purbiya Rajput soldiers from the eastern regions of Bihar and Awadh were recruited as mercenaries for Rajputs in the west, particularly in the Malwa region.

Mughal time

Akbar's policy

After the mid-16th century, many Rajput rulers formed close relationships with the Mughal emperors and served them in various functions. Thanks to the support of the Rajputs, Akbar was able to lay the foundation stone for the Mughal Empire in India. Some Rajput nobles gave their daughters in marriage to Mughal emperors and princes for political reasons. For example, Akbar has 40 marriages for himself, his sons and grandchildren, 17 of which were Rajput-Mughal alliances. Akbar's successor as Mughal emperor, his son Jahangir and grandson Shah Jahan had Rajput mothers. The ruling Sisodia Rajput family of Mewar made it a privilege not to have marital relations with Mughals, and therefore claimed to stand out from the Rajput clans who did. Once Mewar had submitted and the Rajput alliance achieved some degree of stability, marital relationships between leading Rajput states and Mughals became rare. Akbar's close relationship with the Rajputs began when he returned from a pilgrimage to the Chisti Sufi Shaykh in Sikri, west of Agra, in 1561. Many Rajput princesses were married to Akbar, but the Rajput princess was allowed to maintain her religion.

Aurangzeb's policy

Akbar's diplomatic policy towards the Rajputs was later marred by the intolerant rules of his great-grandson Aurangzeb. A prominent example of these rules was the reintroduction of Jaziya, which Akbar had abolished. Despite the imposition of Jaziya, Aurangzeb's army had a high proportion of Rajput officers in the upper echelons of the imperial army and they were all exempt from paying Jaziya. The Rajputs then rebelled against the Mughal Empire. Aurangzeb's conflicts with the Rajputs that began in the early 1680s contributed to the fall of the Mughal Empire.

In the 18th century the Rajputs came under the influence of the Maratha Empire. By the end of the 18th century, the Rajput rulers began negotiations with the East India Company, and by 1818 all Rajput states had allied with the company.

British colonial times

Mayo College was founded by the British government in Ajmer, Rajputana, in 1875 to educate Rajput princes and other nobles.

The medieval Bardic chronicles (kavya and masnavi) glorified the Rajput past and presented warriors and honor as Rajput ideals. This later became the basis for the British reconstruction of Rajput history and the nationalist interpretation of the Rajputs' struggles with the Muslim invaders. James Tod, a British colonial official, was impressed by the military qualities of the Rajputs but is now considered unusually in love with them. Though the group reveres him to this day, he has not been considered a particularly reliable commentator by many historians since the late 19th century. Jason Freitag, his only significant biographer, has said death is "obviously biased."

Regarding the role of the Rajput soldiers serving under the British banner, Captain A. H. Bingley wrote:

Rajputs have served in our ranks from Plassey to this day (1899). You have participated in almost every campaign by the Indian armies. Under Forde they defeated the French in Condore. Under Monro in Buxar, they led the forces of the Nawab of Oudh. Under the lake, they took part in the brilliant series of victories that destroyed the power of the Marathas.

The Rajput Practices of Female Child Murder and sati (Widow burning) were other matters of concern to the British. It was believed that the Rajputs were the primary adherents of these practices, which the British Raj considered wild and which gave the first impetus to British ethnographic study of the subcontinent, which eventually manifested itself as a much broader exercise in social engineering.

Independent India

When India became independent in 1947, the princely states, including the Rajputs, were given three options: either to join India or Pakistan, or to remain independent. Rajput rulers of the 22 princely states of Rajputana joined the newly independent India, which was merged into the new state of Rajasthan in 1949–1950. Originally, the maharajas received Secret Purse funds in exchange for their approval, but a series of land reforms in the decades that followed weakened their power and their Secret Purse was cut off during the administration of Indira Gandhi under the 26th Constitutional Amendment Act of 1971. The goods, treasures and practices of the ancient Rajput rulers now form an important part of the tourist trade and cultural memory of Rajasthan.

In 1951 the Rajput Rana dynasty ended in Nepal, which had been the power behind the throne of the figureheads of the Shah dynasty since 1846.

The Rajput Dogra dynasty of Kashmir and Jammu also ended in 1947, although the title was retained until the monarchy was abolished in 1971 with the 26th amendment to the Constitution of India.

There have been several cases of Sati (Cremation of a living widow) in India from 1943 to 1987. There have been 28 cases since 1947, according to an Indian scholar. Although the widows were from different communities, there were 19 cases of Rajput widows. The most famous of these cases is a Rajput woman named Roop Kanwar. 40,000 Rajputs gathered on the Straits of Jaipur in October 1987 to support their sati. A pamphlet distributed that day attacked independent and Western women who defied a woman's duty to worship her husband, as the practice of sati shows. This incident reaffirmed the low status of women in the Rajput community and the politically won leaders of this pro-sati movement.

The Rajputs in states like Madhya Pradesh are now considered to be the forward caste in the Indian system of positive discrimination. This means that they do not have access to reservations here. However, they are classified as another backward class by the National Backward Classes Commission in Karnataka State. However, some Rajputs, like other agricultural castes, demand reservations from government agencies.


Main article: Rajput clans

The term "Rajput" refers to a group of castes, clans and lineages. It is a vaguely defined term and there is no general consensus as to which clans make up the Rajput community. In medieval Rajasthan (the historical Rajputana) and its neighboring areas, the word Rajput was restricted to certain clans based on patrilineal descent and mixed marriages. On the other hand, the Rajput communities in the region east of Rajasthan had a flowing and integrative character. The Rajputs of Rajasthan ultimately refused to recognize the Rajput identity claimed by their Eastern counterparts such as the Bundelas. The Rajputs claim to be Kshatriyas, or descendants of Kshatriyas, but their actual status varies widely, ranging from princely lineages to common cultivators.

There are several main subdivisions of Rajputs known as vansh or Vamsha, the step under the super division jāti thesis vansh Demarcation claimed descent from various sources, and the Rajputs are generally considered to be divided into three main Vansh: Suryavanshi denotes descent from the sun deity Surya, Chandravanshi (Somavanshi) from the lunar deity Chandra, and Agnivanshi from the fire deity Agni. The Agnivanshi clans include Parmar, Chaulukya (Solanki), Parihar, and Chauhan.

Less noticed vansh These include Udayvanshi, Rajvanshi, and Rishivanshi[Quote needed]. The stories of the different vanshs were later recorded in documents known as vamshāavalīis;; André Wink counts these among the "status-legitimizing texts".

Under the vansh Divisions are always smaller subdivisions: kul, shakh ("Branch"), khamp or Khanp ("Branch") and nak ("Branch tip"). Marriages within one kul are usually not permitted (with a certain degree of flexibility for Kul-Mates of various kinds gotra Lineages). The kul serves as the primary identity for many of the Rajput clans and for everyone kul is protected by a family goddess who kuldevi. Lindsey Harlan notes that in some cases shakhs have become powerful enough to be functional kuls for yourself.

Culture and ethos

The East India Company's Bengali army was heavily recruited from higher castes such as Brahmins and Rajputs. After the uprising of the Bengali Sepoys in 1857, the British-Indian Army relocated recruitment to the Punjab.

War races

The Rajputs were known as the Martial Race in the time of the British Raj. The alleged reason for this classification system was the belief that a "war race" was usually brave and well built for battle, but it was also viewed as politically submissive, intellectually inferior due to the lack of initiative or leadership skills to command large military formations command. for lack of a nationalist attitude and was recruited by those who were not trained as they were easier to control.

Rajput lifestyle

The Rajput Bride, illustration in The Oriental Annual or Scenes of India (1835)

Rajputs of Udaipur play the game Puchesee.

The Rajputs of Bihar were the inventors of the martial art form Pari KhandaThis practice was later incorporated into the folk dances of Bihar and Jharkhand such as those of the Chhau dance. On special occasions, a chief chief broke off a meeting of his vassal chiefs khanda nariyal, the distribution of daggers and coconuts. Another confirmation of the Rajput's awe of his sword was this Karga Shapna ("Adoration of the Sword") ritual performed during the annual Navaratri Festival. According to this, a Rajput is considered "free to pursue his passion for rape and revenge". The Rajputs of Rajasthan also offer their family goddess (Kuldevta) a sacrifice of water buffalo or goats during Navaratri. The ritual requires killing the animal with a single blow. In the past, this ritual was considered a rite of passage for young Rajput men.

Rajputs have generally adopted the custom of Purdah (seclusion from women).

Rajput women could be accepted into Mughal harem and this defined the Mughals as overlords over the Rajput clans. The Mewar Sisodia clan was an exception as they refused to send their wives to the Mughal harem, resulting in siege and mass suicide in Chittor.

Historically, members of the ruling Rajput clans of Rajasthan have also practiced polygamy, taking many women they enslaved as concubines from the battles they won. Women have been captured, enslaved, and even sold during numerous armed conflicts in India, such as the capture and sale of Marwar's women by Jaipur's armed forces in the battle between Jaipur State and Jodhpur State in 1807. The women enslaved by various people mentions terms that corresponded to the conditions imposed on them, for example a "house slave" was named Davri;; a dancer was called a Patar;; an "elderly slave in the women's accommodation" was called Badaran or Vadaran;; a concubine was called Khavasin;; and a woman "allowed to wear the veil" like Rajput queens was called a pardayat.

The term Chakar was used for a person who serves their "superior" and Chakras contained complete families from certain "professional groups" such as brahmin women, cooks, nurses, dressmakers, laundresses. For children born from the "illegitimate association" of Rajputs and their "inferiors" like the terms goli and Darogi were used for women and Gola and Daroga were used for men. The "courtly chronicles" say that women who were classified as "higher social" were assigned to the "harems of their conquerors with or without marriage". The chronicles of the Rajput courts recorded that women from the Rajput community were also subjected to such treatment from the Rajput side from the winning side of a battle. There are also a number of records between the late 16th and mid-19th centuries in which the Rajputs cremated a king's queens, servants, and slaves after his death. Ramya Sreenivasan also gives an example of a Jain concubine who went from being a servant to being named a superior concubine Paswan

According to Priyanka Khanna, Marwar's royal Rajput households also included women from the Gujar, Ahir, Jat, Mali, Kayastha, and Darji communities in that region. These Marwar castes claimed Rajput ancestry based on the "Marwar Census Data, 1861". However, research by modern scholars into the forms of "slavery and servitude" imposed on captive women by the ruling clans of Rajasthan's Rajputs between the 16th and early 19th centuries faces hurdles due to "sparse information" and "inconsistent" Records "" and "Biased Nature of Historical Records." The Ravana Rajput community of today was one such slave community

The male children of such unions were identified by their father's name and in some cases as “Dhaibhai” (foster brothers) and taken into the household. Examples are given of where they have helped their stepbrothers in war campaigns. The female children of concubines and slaves married Rajput men for money or eventually became dancing girls. The lack of available brides due to female infanticide led to the abduction of women from low castes who were sold for marriage to the higher clan Rajputs. Since these "sales" were really for the purpose of marriage, they were considered legal. The lower clans also faced a shortage of brides. In this case, they married women like those from Gujar and Jat parishes. Semi-nomadic communities also married their daughters to Rajput grooms for money in some cases.

Female child murder

Female infanticide has been practiced by Rajputs of low ritual status who attempted upward mobility, as well as by Rajputs of high ritual status. But there were cases when it was not practiced and cases when the mother tried to save the girl's life. According to the officials of the early Raj era in Etawah, Uttar Pradesh, the Gahlot, Bamungors and Bais would kill their daughters if they were rich but benefit from marrying them if they were poor.

The methods used to kill the female baby were drowning, choking, poisoning, "asphyxia by pulling the umbilical cord over the baby's face to prevent breathing". Other options were to let the child die without food, and if it survived the first few hours after birth, it was given poison. A common way to poison the baby while breastfeeding was to apply a preparation made from poisonous plants such as thorn apple, Madar or poppy seeds on the mother's breast.

Social activists in the early nineteenth century tried to stop these practices by quoting Hindu Shastras:

"Killing a woman is a hundred brahmins, killing a child is a hundred women, while killing a hundred children is an offense too horrific to compare."

Child murder has unintended consequences. The Rajput clans of lower ritual status married their daughters to Rajput men of higher ritual status who had lost women to child murder. As a result, the Rajputs of lower ritual status had to remain unmarried or resort to other practices such as marrying widows, levirate marriages (marrying the widow of the brother), and marrying women of lower castes such as jats and gujars or nomads. This widened the gap between Rajputs with low ritual status and Rajputs with high ritual status.

In the late 19th century, Law VIII of 1870 was introduced to curb the practice. A judge suggested:

"Let every Rajput be thoroughly convinced that for every girl he murders he will go to jail for ten years with as much security as he would feel if he killed her in adulthood and the crime will be stamped. " very effective, but as long as the government is reluctant to deal rigorously with criminals, the Rajpoot will for so long believe he has the chance of impunity and will continue to kill girls as before. "

The practical application of the law, however, was fraught with hurdles. It was difficult to prove guilty as in some cases the Rajput men were busy at some distance, although the little girls could be killed at their own discretion. In most cases, Rajput men were only detained for a short period of time. Between 1888 and 1889 the proportion of girls rose to 40%. However, the law was abolished in 1912 as the penalties could not stop child murder. One historian concludes that "the act that only scratched the surface of the problem failed to civilize or bring about social change in a cultural world where girls were devalued". In addition to Rajputs, Jats and Ahirs have also been observed to practice infanticide.

Bridal Prize or Bridewealth Weddings

Allen Fanger, an anthropologist from Kutztown University of Pennsylvania, conducted research on certain Rajput groups in a region in Uttar Pradesh (now Uttarkhand) in the late 20th century. He studied the custom of selling their wives to marriage among these Rajputs for a "bride price". "Bride Price" is the price that the groom's family pays to the bride's family (not the bride herself) to purchase a bride. Joshi cites the "bride price" among these Rajputs in this regard: "A woman is something that is bought by the father of the family for one of the sons. The nature of the transaction is the acquisition of an item of value for the family rather than a contractual relationship between a man and a woman ". Before British rule in 1815, the husband had complete control of the wife and he and his heirs could sell them or their children as slaves.

"Bridewealth" is also discussed in 19th century North Indian Rajputs by the historian Malavika Kasturi of the University of Toronto. She states that Rajputs belonging to social groups in which their wives worked in the fields received bridewealth from the groom's family. She adds that evidence shows that the assumption by officials of the time that the child murder of women among clans was due to poverty and inability to pay dowry is wrong.

Between 1790 and 1815 this sale of wives and widows was taxed and a tax was levied on their export. Fanger writes: "This right to sell a woman, widow or children was eventually abandoned under the British, but the practice was not entirely eliminated. Berremen has reported this type of" woman traffic "in the nearby Garhwal district, among others culturally similar Garhwali Rajputs (1963: 74-75), and in the 1960s I still found this practice in a village near Pakhura. "The Thul-Jat, Rajput men could also take Rajput women as concubines. What marriage was to a Rajput was easy to get a concubine to a Thul-Jat. A Rajput woman sold for "bride price" was allowed to marry another man as long as the original husband was reimbursed, and could also "run away with another man" and legitimize union with her lover by reimbursing the original husband . However, from the beginning of the 20th century, dowry trends began to replace "bride money".

These Uttarkhanda Rajput groups were officially classified as Shudra today, but had successfully transitioned to Rajput status during the reign of Chand Rajas (which ended in 1790). Likewise, the Rajputs of Gharwal originally had a low ritual status and only wore the sacred thread in the 20th century. However, since they had successfully achieved Rajput identity before, Fanger concludes that Sanskritization does not explain the trend change from bride price to dowry. According to him, opportunities to observe Orthodox customs led to this change in custom. Second, the Rajput woman's contribution to agricultural labor decreased due to the increased employment of men, so a bride price was not required. Bride price marriages, which were traditional and paid little attention to Brahmanic rituals, slowly turned into dowry marriages in the 20th century, with the exception of the poorer Rajputs. A Rajput man admitted to Fanger that although he had bought all three of his wives, he had married his daughter as "Kanyadan" without accepting any money as that would mean he was selling her, adding, "We." don't do that anymore ".


During the British rule, her love of pork was also vigorous; H. Wild Boar, known, and the British identified them as a group based on it.

Opium consumption, etc.

The Indian Rajputs fought for the Mughals several times but needed drugs to strengthen their spirits. They would take a double dose of opium before the fight. Muslim soldiers would also take opium. Mughals regularly gave opium to their Rajput soldiers in the 17th century. During British rule, opium addiction was viewed as a serious demoralizing vice of the Rajput community. Arabs brought opium to India in the 9th century. The Indian Council for Medical Research on "Patterns and Processes of Drug and Alcohol Use in India" states that opium gives a person improved physical strength and performance. Studies by K.K. Ganguly, K. Sharma, and Krishnamachari on opium use also mention that the Rajputs would use opium for important ceremonies, to relieve emotional distress, to increase life expectancy, and to increase sexual pleasure.

Alcoholism is seen as a problem in the Rajput community of Rajasthan and therefore Rajput women do not like their husbands when they drink alcohol. A 1983 study of alcoholism in India reported that it was common in northern India for Rajput men (not all) to drink in groups. The women were sometimes subjected to domestic violence, such as beatings, after these men returned home from drinking.


By the end of the 19th century, the Rajputs' focus shifted from politics to kinship. Many Rajputs in Rajasthan are nostalgic about their past and very aware of their genealogy. They emphasize a Rajput ethos that is martial in spirit and has a strong pride in ancestry and tradition.

Rajput politics

Rajput politics refers to the role that the Rajput community plays in Indian electoral politics.[better source needed] In states like Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Uttrakhand, Jammu, Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat, the large population of the Rajputs plays a decisive role.[better source needed]


The term Rajput painting refers to works of art created in the Rajput-ruled courts of Rajasthan, central India, and the Punjab Hills. The term is also used to describe the style of these paintings, which is different from the Mughal painting style.

According to Ananda Coomaraswamy, Rajput painting symbolized the divide between Muslims and Hindus during the Mughal rule. The styles of Mughal and Rajput painting have an oppositional character. He characterized Rajput painting as "popular, universal and mystical".

See also

  • List of Rajput dynasties and states
  • List of the Rajput clans of Uttar Pradesh
  • Bihari Rajput
  • Muslim Rajputs
  • List of Rajputs
  • List of Hindu Empires and Dynasties
  • Rakwal



External links

Media related to Rajput people at Wikimedia Commons

Wikiquote contains quotes on: Rajput