Caste Among Indian Muslims: Causes And Consequences

[Excerpts from the paper presented by Masood Alam Falahi in Columbia University, New York for “Caste and Contemporary India” conference on 17th Oct. 2009]

By Masood Alam Falahi,

(Part - I)
Definition of caste and class:

According to the sociologists, caste is a segmental division by birth and every caste is high and low in caste hierarchy. It is bounded by lack of unrestricted choice of occupation, restrictions on commensality and social intercourse, endogamy/restrictions on marriage and every caste is interdependence.

An open society is called a class. This is a system of social hierarchy in which the status of a person is based on his achievement. In general the basis of social class is the status of the people which is gained by wealth, income, occupation or other things e.g. education.[1]

In Indian context there is no difference between caste and class, because there is an overlapping between class and caste and vice-versa in India.

Before the advent of Islam, the Arabs considered the Non-Arabs, inferior to them. Even Arab world was divided into a society of upper and lower class. Quraish considered themselves high and others low. We can find such evidences in pre- Islamic era.

Caste in the light of Islamic teachings

Islam is an egalitarian religion. It does not believe in casteism, racism or any kind of discrimination on the basis of nation, family, caste and creed. The Holy Qur'an itself says in Surah Al-Hujrat:
“O mankind, indeed we have created you from a male and a female and made you peoples and tribes that you may know one another. Indeed the most noble of you in the sight of Allah is the most righteous of you. Indeed, Allah is Knowing and Acquainted.” [2]

The Holy Qur’an also says:

“The believers are but brothers. [The believers are nothing else than brothers (in Islamic religion)].” [3]

The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is said to had declared:

“There are two things which can lead people to infidelity, one is weeping loudly on the dead body and another one is to consider others as low on the basis of their birth (caste).” [4]

A great Islamic scholar and Muhaddith ‘Iamam Nawwi’, put this hadith under the chapter of “Declaring of some one as low on the basis of caste will lead people to infidelity.[5]

The Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) said in the Hajjat Al-weda’ (the last Haj of the Prophet (PBUH):

“There is no superiority of Arab over non-Arab, of non-Arab over Arab, of white people over black people, of black people over white people. Superiority is only on the basis of piety”.[6]

This concept of equality found expression much later in Article 1 of the UN Declaration of Human Rights (UNDHR), 1948 which declared “all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.”

Prophet Mohammad married “Hzrat. Zainab Bint-e Jahash Rz.”[7] (the daughter of his real aunty from paternal side) with his free slave Hzrat Zaid bin Harthah Rz. and Hzrat Zabaya’h Bint-e- Zubair Rz. (the daughter of his real uncle from paternal side ) with Hzrat Miqdad Kindi Rz. ( whose family profession was weaving).[8] After that he said:
“I married Zaid bin Harthah Rz. with zainab bint-e-Jehash Rz. and Zubaa’h bint-e-Zubair Rz. with Miqdad, Rz. that people should know that the biggest superiority is the superiority of Islam.” [9]

There are many great prophets’ companions who got confirmation of getting paradise in this world i.e. Hazart Abu Bakr As-Siddique, Hazrat Umar,Hazrat Uthman, Hazrat Ali, Zubair bin Awwam, Sayeed bin Zaid, Abu Obaidah bin Jarrah, Talhah bin Obaidillah and Abdur Rahman bin ‘Awf – May Allah be please with them-. But no one’s name came in the Quran. If any one’s name came that he is a slave “ Hazrat zaid bin harethah Rz.[10]

On the day of Makkah (Mecca) victory, the prophet ordered Hazrat Bilal Habshi Rz. to call Aazan, on the roof of Ka’bah. Before it he already made him muwazzin of prophets’ mosque in Madinah.

When Islam came in India, because of these teachings of equality and brotherhood, many Hindus, especially Dalits and other ‘low’ castes, embraced Islam being victims of the Hindu caste system. As late as the early twentieth century, a Christian scholar T.W. Arnold remarked about the conditions of Dalits and ‘low’ castes thus:

“[…] In Travancore certain of the lower castes may not come nearer than seventy four paces to a Brahman and have to make a grunting noise as they pass along the road, in order to give warning of their approach.”[11]

Arnold writes about the spread of Islam in Bengal, quoting from Sir W.W.Hunter’s
Book “The religions of India” and another book “Wise” (p.32):

“To these poor people, fishermen, hunters, pirates and low-caste tillers of the soil, Islam came as a revelation from on high. It was the creed of the ruling race; its missionaries were men of zeal who brought the Gospel of the unity of God and the equality of men in its sight to a despised and neglected population […] It brought in a higher conception of God and a nobler idea of the brotherhood of man. It offered to the teeming low castes of Bengal, who had sat for ages abject on the outermost pale of the Hindu community, a free entrance into a new social organization.”[12]

Arnold further adds:
“It is this absence of class prejudices which constitutes the real strength of Islam in India and enables it to win so many converts from Hinduism.” [13]

The first Prime Minister of independent India, Jawaharlal Nehru, says about the spread of Islam in India:
“The impact of the invaders from the north-west and of Islam on India had been considerable. It had pointed out and shown up the abuses that had crept into Hindu society –the petrifaction of caste, untouchability, exclusiveness, carried to fantastic lengths. This idea of brotherhood of Islam and of the theoretical equality of its adherents made a powerful appeal, especially to those in the Hindu fold who were denied any semblance of equal treatments. From this ideological impact grew up various movements aiming at a religious synthesis. Many conversions also took place but the great majority of these were from the lower castes, especially in Bengal. Some individuals belonging to the higher castes also adopted the new faith, either because of a real change of belief, or, more often, for political and economic reasons. There were obvious advantages in accepting the religion of the ruling power.”[14]

Islam spread in India due to its message of equality and brotherhood. The majority of Indian Muslims are descendants of ‘untouchables and low’ caste converts, with only a small minority tracing their descent to Arab, Iranian and Central Asian settlers and invaders. Although Islam is fiercely egalitarian in its social ethics, insisting on the radical equality of all believers, Indian Muslim society is characterized by numerous caste-like features, consisting of several castes –like groups (jatis, biraderis). Muslims who claim foreign descent, such as the Sayeds, Shaikhs, Mughals and Pathans, claim a superior status for themselves as ashraf or noble’. Descendants of indigenous converts are commonly referred to as ‘ajlaf’ or ‘base’ or ‘lowly’ and ‘arzal or Dalist’.

In the centuries of Muslim rule in India, the ‘ashraf’ and ‘high’ caste Hindu converts played a key role in the state administration, as advisors, ministers, governors, army officials, and estates managers, as well as sufis and ‘ulama. On the other hand, despite their conversion to Islam, the social and economic conditions of the mass of the ‘ajlaf’ and ‘arzal’ Muslims hardly changed and they remained tied down to their traditional occupations as artisans, peasants, labourers and sweepers. Many great ‘ulama and intellectuals, past as well as present, belonging to the various Muslim sects and formations , including Shia and Sunni, Aligarh Tahreek, Deobandi, Barailvi, Ahl-e-Hadith, Jamaa’t-e-Islami and the All-India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) supported the caste system either in the name of the supposed superiority of the sadat / ahl-e-bait (people tracing their origin to the Prophet’s daughter, Hazrat Fatima Rz.) or the belief that only a person of Quraish descent (Sayeds and Shaikhs) could be the Caliph or through caste-based kufu (endogamy).

Origin of casteism among Indian Muslims

Now the million dollar question which still remains unanswered here is that if there is no existence of casteism in Islam then how and when casteism started reflecting in lives and culture of Indian Muslims?

According to the Holy Qur’an, the founder of casteism, is Satan ‘Iblis’( his real name is Azazeel ). When Allah ordered angles and Jinns, to bow down in front of Adam. The angles bow downed in front of Adm, but Iblis refused it. When Allah asked him that why didn’t you do it? He replied to Allah showing his creation (caste) superiority. The Holy Qur’an says:

“[Allah] said,” What prevented you from prostrating when I commanded you” [Satan] said, “ I am better than him. You created me from fire and created him from clay [i.e., earth].”

In one place the Holy Qur’an quotes his argument:
“He said, “I am better than him. You created me from fire and created him from clay.”

The nature of fire is to go to up and nature of clay is to go down. This was the argument of Satan. Allah didn’t like his caste based argument and sent him out from paradise. Allah says:
“[Allah] said, “Descend from it [i.e. Paradise], for it is not for you to be arrogant therein. So get out; indeed, you are of the debased.”

In fact, the Arab world was divided into a society of upper and lower class in pre- Islamic era, as already highlighted above. When Islam started spreading in the land, it by rule prohibited casteism and declared it as Haram. Islam proclaimed equality among every human being. It emphasized on the deeds of a person to decide one’s nobility, no one was high or low except on the basis of good deeds and bad deeds.

But after the period when Arabs were led by Prophet and rightly guided caliphs Hazart Abu Bakr As-Siddique Rz. and Hazrat Umar Al-Farooque,Rz.this illegal thing raised its head in Arab society again. In the period of Hazrat Usman Rz., a Jew Abdullah bin Saba embraced Islam and he started tribe based discrimination among Muslims. He objected on Hazrat Usman’s ability to get caliphate on the basis of tribal affiliation and argued that since Hazrat Ali Rz. was cousin of Prophet and belonged to his family, he was more desirable of the post. His thoughts spread among whole of the Persian area like a wild fire and infected the already jealous people of the area who had problems with Arab. As a consequence of this, Hazrath Usamn Rz. was murdered.

It was Iran where the “Sho’uobiyah” movement was launched against Arab Muslim. The followers of this movement preferred pre-Islamic Iranian history, traditions etc. on Islamic teachings.

It was Iran where many scholars supported caste system. Mr.Dileep Karanth writes referring a noted sociologist Mr. Ghaus Ansari:

“Even the reputed Muslim scholars of Persia, like Nasir-ud-Din at-Tusi preached the division of society; his classification of society remained the same as it was during the Sasanian period. In his book, Akhlaq-i-Nasiri (which was finished shortly before the fall of the Caliphate), at-Tusi considers that each of the social classes should be kept in its proper place. A seventeenth-century work, Jami-i-Mufidi, again retains the same four-fold division of society, but it puts forward a slight change in giving precedence to warriors at the top and reducing the relative rank of priests to that of second in the hierarchy. In addition to these philosophers, the noted statesman of Persia, Nizam-ul-Mulk, in his Siyasat Nama, instructs his subordinates to maintain the people in their proper ranks.”

The incident of Hazrat Usman’s murder marked the beginning of caste system among Muslims. Subsequently it increased and gripped majority of followers of Hazart A’li Rz., also known as “Shiats”, whose majority started claiming themselves of high caste as “Sayids”.

According to Shiat’s theology, if a Sayed girl’s nikah (marriage) has been done with non Sayed with permission of her and her parents. Even in this condition her nikah will be invalid. Sayed girl’s nikah should be with Sayed only.

Casteism among Shiats is visible everywhere. An ‘alim (religious scholar) belongs to the Sayed caste will wear black turban, but an ‘alim belongs to other caste can’t wear black turban. He will wear the turban of different colour.

We can see the seeds of caste system turning into a full bloomed venomous tree in Umayid period. For example:
1. The governor of Iraque Hajjaj bin Yousuf ordered that no non-Arab can be an Imam in Kofah.
2. The governor of Basrah Bilal bin Abi Burdah whipped a great non Ararb a’alim (religious scholar) ‘Abdullah bin ‘Awn’ because he married an Arab lady.
3. A Bedouin of Bano Sulaim (name of a tribe) married his daughter with a non-Arab new Muslim. Mohammad bin Basheer Al-Kharji went to Madinah and complained to the governor of Madinah “Ibrahim bin Hisham bin Isma’il bin Hisham bin Mughirah. The governor separated between wife and husband and whipped that new Muslim and shaved his beard and eyebrow.

The Abbasid dynasty finds its root of establishment in caste system itself. The main campaigner of this dynasty was Abu Muslim Khurasani, ( Khurasan : a city in Iran) who already had a grudge against the teaching of Islam. Nafs Zakiyah –one of Hazrat A’li Rz. family- accepted this fact. He, once in his letter to Abbasid Caliph Mansoor, wrote:

“The caliphate is our right. You claimed it through us. You took the support of our shiats to gain it. You got it in behalf of us only.”

Even Caliph Mansoor recognizes the facts that the Abbasid movement raised the honor of Ahle Bait ( Sayid/the family of Hazarat A’li Rz.). He replied to Nafs-e-Zakiah:

“….We. (Abbasid movement)…. Raised the superiority of the elders of Ahle Bait.”

The caste system was on its highest of peaks, during this period. Even Abbasids and Fatmites (people of Ahle bait) commented on each other caste on a regular basis, trying to prove one another of a lower status.

The three imams Hazrat Imam Abu Hanifah, Hazrat Imam Shafy’ee, Hazrat Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal, used to live in the remote areas of the city of Prophet ‘ Madinah’ where caste system ran in every vein. It even reflected in their fatwas. But as Hazrat Imam Malik lived in the heart of Madinah, he took his stand totally against casteism.

Compilation of Fiqh was started during the Abbasid period and so one can find a numerous of fatwas dominated by caste system.

Still we can find casteism among Arab. Dr. Yosuf Abdullah al-Qardawi – a known Islamic scholar residing in Qatar - writes about the caste system in Egypt. According to him:

‘If any girl is married in other caste/tribe, the people used to say that “the crocodile ate her.”

Once he writes that when he was caught by Egyptian police, the head of intelligence of Al-Mahallatul Kubra “ Mohammad Shadeed” ordered him to put his shoes on his turban. He told him that turban is symbol of Islamic education and humiliation of it (turban) is humiliation of Islam. But the intelligence head laughed loudly, abused him and told one of his men to put the shoes on his turban. Dr. Qardawi asked him that he can do, if this is black turban. The intelligence head didn’t reply him.

This incident shows us the importance of sayed in Egyptian society.

He also writes that in Qatar and Kuait there are Muslim tribes (in Kuwait their name is Bedouin and Qatar their name is Al-Hawlah) who are living there without citizenship. They are facing a lot of problems for marriage, haj and travels.

Still some of Arab has feeling of Arab nationalism or superiority of Arab. When Saddam Husain was hanged, an Indian journalist Burkha Datt asked a person in Baghdad “how do you feel?” He replied ‘It is bad, he was an Arab and he was a Muslim.’

He used Arab word before Muslim and Islam. Arab were in opposition of Ottman caliphate because of they were non- Arab. By this way Ottman caliphate was destroyed.

Mr Dileep Karanth writes under the sub-heading of “ Caste in the Islamic World”:

“We have already seen from the examples of the Ashraf's practices regarding marriage, or admittance to mystic brotherhoods, etc., the Ashraf also retained their own stereotypes and prejudices which cannot be traced solely to Hindu influence.

But that is not the whole story. Even if the caste structure was largely a relic from the pre-Islamic past, new castes also sometimes came into existence. The Maratha Bugtis in Balochistan are an interesting case of what may be a caste forming even under Islamic rule. Theirs is a clan claiming descent from Marathas captives of war brought back by members of the Bugti tribe, who served the armies of Ahmad Shah Durrani (Abdali) after the fateful battle of Panipat.

In time they underwent 'Bugti-ization'and became Muslims. Although for all practical purposes they may now be considered Bugtis, and are even in the forefront in education and employment, they were once considered little better than bonded labour. They could not own or buy land. Up to two generations ago they could be 'bought' for twenty or thirty rupees. Their women were fair game for Bugtis.

The Maratha Bugtis took jobs as unskilled labourers, which their tribal overlords disdained. Over the years they have come to occupy higher positions, and their prosperity is resented by the Bugtis. It is interesting to note that this caste-like phenomenon has endured for more than two centuries, even in a region largely devoid of Hindus.

The Maratha Bugtis were not alone in their position as a group living in the Islamic world, with their inferior position determined by heredity. The Haratin or Harratin of southwestern Morocco and Mauritania are "a socially and ethnically distinct class of workers". They are descended from slaves, but are now serfs, "without the privileges of freedom". (One of the people who is trying to help them to become independent is Abdel Nasser Ould Yessa, whose life and work is discussed at the following web site:

The facile practice of regarding all hierarchies in the Islamic world as a substratum from pre-Islamic societies does not always work. Hierarchies (in other words, castes) exist even in places like Yemen and the rest of the Arabian peninsula.

As a perusal of the informative entry on "Bedouin" in the Encyclopaedia Brittanica reveals, Bedouin society in twentieth-century Arabia was also divided into various groups. While the nomads have been settled after the formation of the modern states, the societal hierarchical and patriarchal structure has been retained. The Bedouin tribes were classified on the basis of the species of animal on which they depended. Camel nomads were highest in prestige. They were spread on extensive territories in the Sahara, Syrian and Arabian deserts. Sheep- and goat-herding nomads, rank below, and live closer the cultivated zones in Jordan, Syria and Iraq. The noble tribes are proud of their ancestry, and are divided into "Qaysi" (northern Arabian) or "Yamani" groups. In addition to the noble elements, the Bedouin society also includes vassal tribes, which are "ancestorless" (i.e., tribes whose heredity is not prestigious). These groups are subservient to the noble tribes and include professional groups such as artisans, blacksmiths, entertainers, etc.

Caste-like phenomena are attested in other regions of the Arabian peninsula, even among the sedentary populations. Paul Dresch has studied the situation in Yemeni tribal society at the beginning of the twentieth century. He observes that two groups of people are widely regarded as not belonging to the tribe, but are still endowed with rights and obligations. The first of them is the Sayyids – a group claiming descent from the prophet, and the Qadis. (The Qadis are also a group defined by heredity. While elsewhere in the Islamic world the title Qadi refers to judges, in Yemen it only denotes a member of this class, whether judge or not. The Qadis or mashaykh are also said to be descended from the Prophet Hud. The mashaykh do not enjoy as much prestige as the Sayyids. ) Below the tribesmen rank the 'weak' people (dua'fa) (sing. da'if). Weak people have no prestige. They include people of various trades, some respectable and some not so respectable.

Artisans and merchants in the traditional towns tend to be highly organized into castelike guild groups that are ranked largely according to the nature of their craft. In many areas those who ply so-called respectable trades are sharply differentiated from the bani khoms, or sons of the five, practitioners of the five despised trades of barber, bloodletter, butcher, bath attendant, and tanner. In the Hadramaut artisans who handle clay, such as masons and potters, also fall into the despised group, as do sweepers, fishermen, and some others, depending on locality. Poor farm laborers also occupy a low status, but it is higher than those of the despised crafts.

The akhdam, in many areas the lowest group, are so isolated from society that they have been compared with the untouchables of India. Found especially along the Tihama coast and in southern Yemen (Sana) but also in the Hadramaut, they are often distinguished socially by their negroid appearance and often follow the despised trade of sweeper. The akhdam appear to be descendants of slaves, although not all former slaves occupy such degraded positions. Slavery existed in the territories of the Aden Protectorate until the 1930s and persisted in Yemen (Sana) until 1962.

The Sayyids in Yemen did not allow intermarriage with other Yemeni castes. This superiority was challenged only by expatriates in Singapore in 1905, and again under the Irshadi movement in Java in 1915.”

The second part of the question as to how Indian Muslims adopted this Casteism in their society is yet to be answered.

The Indian Muslim history states that Muslim traders landed in South India i.e. Kerala, Malabar etc. Raja Dahir’s army captured seven Islamic ships which were coming from Sarandeep and there were Muslim male and female in it. Because of this Mohammad Bin Qasim attacked North India and captured Sind and its adjoining places.

The Arab Rule was on Sind till 995 AD. Casteism was still nowhere among Muslims, during that time. Even no caste system existed in the period of non Arab Muslim rulers like Sultan Mahmood Ghaznavi, (d.18, April, 1030AD) Sultan Shahabuddin Ghauri (d.16 March, 1206AD) and Sulatan Qutbuddin Aibak (d.12 Oct.1210AD). It’s noticeable that Sultan Mahmood Ghaznawi appointed his slave “Ayaz” the governor of Punjab, and gave the title of Raja (king) to a Hindu barber and appointed him his army chief. Sultan Shabuddin Ghauri appointed his slave Qutbuddin Aibak the governor General of India. Qutbuddin Aibak appointed his slave Shamsuddin Iltutmish governor of Gwalior, Barn (Buland Shahar) and Nazim (manager) of Badayun. He even freed him and married his daughter to him.

The casteism among Indian Muslims was actually started by slave of slave Shamsuddin Iltutmish [d.10 April 1236AD] (Shamsuddin Iltutmish was slave of Qutbuddin Aibak and Qutbuddin Aibak was slave of Shabuddin Ghauri.)

It’s already mentioned above that in the Abbasid period the compilation of fiqh was started, and there are many caste based fatawas in it. When the non-Arab Muslim rulers conquered India, the Muslim scholars, Sufis etc followed their path and entered along with them. They brought a totally new tradition, culture and literature. Among many books, Fiqh books (jurisprudence books) also came with these scholars. The Hanafi Fiqh was the official book for religious matter. The Indian land was already diseased by caste based society system, making it the best suitable place for the caste based fatawas. As a result Muslims inherited casteism in their society as well, like Hindus.


[1] Srinivas,M.N.:Religion and Society among the Coorgs of South India, pp 24-31,Ghurye,G.S.:Caste,Class and Occupation,Ch.11, Varna and Caste, pp.194-98,Ch.13,Features of the Caste System , pp. 230-40 , Ghurye, G.S. :Caste and Class in India, Popular Prakashan, Mumbai,1950, Quoted in Sharma, Amit Kumar: Structure of Indian Society, A Sociology Text Book for Class XII,Ch. 4 Caste Class and Tribe in India,pp.35-39.

[2] The Holy Qur’an, Surah Al-H ujrat, Verse: 13.English translation by Saheeh International- Jeddah, printed at the expenses of Awqaf Expenditure Channels, Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs, State of Qatar.

[3] The Holy Qur’an ,Surah Al-Hujrat, Vrese: 10.Op.Cit.

[4]Al-Qasheri, Al-Imam Muslim bin Hajjaj: As-Sahi Ma’ Sharah-e-hi Al-Nawwi.( Hadith Collection by
Imam Muslim), Reyasat Al-Idarat Al-Buhoos Al-Islamiat. Kitabul Iman, Babo Itlaq Ismil Kufr ‘Ala
At-Ta’n Fin-Nasab W An-Niyahah.Vol.I, Part II, p.75.

[5] An-Nawwi: Al-Imam, Muhiuddin sharf: Sharhus Sahih Le Muslim, Kitabul Iman, bab-o- Itlaq-e-Ismil
Kufr A’la at-ta’n fin Nasab w An-neyahah al’a almyyit, pub. Reyasat-o-Idaratil Bohooth al-Islamiayh,

[6] Ash-Sahibani, Al-Imam Ahmad Bin Hambal, Al-Musnad, (Compendium of hadiths) Al-Maktabt Al-
A’rabia,Al-Maktab Al-Islami,Vol.V,p.411

[7] Rz. Means raza Allaho ‘anho / ‘anha (May Allah be pleased with him /her.)

[8] Al-Aa’zmi, Habibur Rahman: Ansab-o-Kafayat Ki sharyee hathiayat (Caste and kafa in the light of
Islamic teachings), Al-Majmaulilmi, Markaz tahqeeq w khidmat-e-Ilmiayh. Mau Nath Bhanjan, Maum
UP, India ed. 1st 1999, p.68

[9] Al-Khurasani, Saeed BinMansoor bin Shaibah Al-Milli: KItabus Sunan, bab-o-Ma jae Fil Munakehahm,
Al-Majlis al-Ilmi ( samlak Dhabel, India, ed. 1st ,edited by: Habibur Rahman al-A;azmi,p.146-147
Hadith No. 585

[10]The Holy Qura’n, Chap. Al-Ahzab, Verses: 37.

[11] Arnold, T. W.: The Preaching of Islam, Low price publication, Delhi, ed. 2nd 1913. p.269

[12] Ibid, pp.279-80

[13] Ibid., p.291

[14] Nehru, Jawaharlal: The Discovery of India, Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Fund, Teen Murti House, New Delhi, 1982, p.265.

[15] The Holy Qur’an,op.cit. Surah al-A’raf, verse No.12
[16] Ibid, op.cit. Surah Sad, Verse No. 76.
[17] Ibid, op.cit. Surah al-A’raf, verse No.13.
[18]Hashmi,Qazi Mohammad Tahir ‘Ali : Kufu wa Nekah Bela Tamyeez-e-Zaat Paat, (endogamy and Marriage without seeing caste) Quoted in Mazhar Moin: Islam Aur Zaat Paat( Islam and Casteism)
[19]pub.Adbistan 43, Reti Gun Lahore Pakistan,p.358
[20]Mahnamah Ma’arif (knowledges Monthly), Azamgarh,June 1928AD, Vol.21,Issue No.6.
[21]Ghaus Ansari,Muslim Caste in Uttar Pradesh (A Study of Culture Contact), Lucknow, 1960, Page 30, Qouted in http :// www. /mandala /h_es/h _es _ karan_caste.htm
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[23] Al-Undulusi, Abu Umar Ahmad bin Mohammad bin Abde Rabbehi: Al-I’qdul-Farid, Vol.2 p.233.
[24] Ibn Sa’d, Al-Imam Mohammad: At-Tabqat-ul- Kubra,Dar-o-Bairoot, 1958 AD,Vol.7,p.263
[25] Al-Asfahi, Abul-Farj:Al-Ighani (The songs), Vol.14 pp.335-336.
[26] Nadvi, Maulna Shah Mui’nuddin nadvi:Tareekh-e-Islam (The History of Islam) ,pub. Darul Musann-e-
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[27] Ibid, Vol.3 p.40.
[28] Ibid, Vol.3, pp.35-39.
[29] Monthly, Burhan (Evidence), Delhi, February, 1973 AD Vol.7, Issue No. 2, pp.122-123.
[30] Monthly Ma’arif (knowledge / information), Azamgarh, June 1928AD, Vol.21,Issue No.6.
[31] Al-Qardawi, Yosuf Abdullah: Ibul Qariyah wal Kuttab,( The son of village and elementary school)
[32] Malamho Seerah w maseerah, darush Shorooq, Cairo,Egypt, ed.1st 2004, Vol.2, p.358
[33] Ibid, Vol. 1 pp.355-356
[34] Ibid, Vol. 2 p.101
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[47] Nadwatul Musannefin, Urdu bazaar, jame’ masjid Delhi-, 1st ed. 1395 H.A., August 1975 AD. P.96-97,
[48] Najeeb aabadi, Akbar Shah Khan: Ayina-e-Haqeeqat Noman,(The mirror of reality) Tahqeeq-o-Takhrij:Abdur Rasheed Bastawi, pub.Shaikh Al-Hind Academy, Darul Oloom Deoband,ed. June 1997AD. Vol. 1 Part. 1, pp.111-124
[49] Ikram, Shaikh Mohammad,: Aab-e-Kauthar, Adbi Duniya, No.510,Matya Mahal, Delhi, ed. 5. pp.23-24.
[50] Al-Yaqoobi,Al-Imam Ahamd bin Abi Yaqoob: Tareekh-e-Yaqoobi, Dar-o-Bairoot,1960AD, Vol. 3, p.34
[51] Al-Belazri, Al-Imam Ahmad bin Yahya: Fotooh Al-Buldan, Tahqee w Taleeq: Abdullah Anis Al-Tabbakh w [52] Umar anees al-Tabbakh, dar al-Nashr Lil Jameyeen 1957 AD, Vo. I, Part.5, p.615.
[53] Najeeb aabadi, Akbar Shah Khan: Ayina-e-Haqeeqat Noman ( The mirror of reality), op.cit,. Vol. 1 Part.
1, pp.171.
[54] Ibid, Ch.1, 2- 3 and 5, Vol.1 part 2 p.579.

(Masood Alam Falahi is a research scholar in University of Delhi and could be contacted at


  1. is very informative. The article is very professionally written. I enjoy reading every day.

  2. Caste and discrimination due to caste is a inhuman menace in the Indian society and religion perhaps has not been able to dilute the caste identity and deprivation and exploitation in the name of caste.
    History seems to repeat itself and what Dr Baba Saheb Ambedkar did in the last century, this wise scholar is again with the same spirit for the downtrodden of this country. We the Mulniwasis of this country, decedents of Indus civilization, no matter what religions we are practicing today, must come together and fight for the humanity and liberation from the bloody Manuwad.

    It will be highly appreciable if I could have the complete research Paper.


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