Hindustan Times (Jalandhar)

WHO ARE THE KANJARBHAT­S

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The Kan­jarb­hat tribe is a no­madic de­no­ti­fied tribe cen­tred in the Dhar­wad and Gadag dis­tricts of Kar­nataka, found in Ma­ha­rash­tra and up­wards to­wards Ra­jasthan and the Amritsar dis­trict of Punjab, UP, Haryana, Bi­har, Hi­machal Pradesh, Orissa, Tripura, Jammu & Kash­mir, Andhra Pradesh, and the An­daman and Ni­co­bar is­lands. The name it­self is de­rived from ‘kan­jar’ which means ‘knife or sword’ and ‘bhat’ mean­ing ‘lessees’, mak­ing them ‘lessees of the iron’ or those who tra­di­tion­ally man­u­fac­tured the metal swords for var­i­ous mil­i­tary forces. Their as­so­ci­a­tion was es­pe­cially strong with the Ra­jasthani fight­ing forces, an in­flu­ence still seen in their at­tire and lan­guage. Un­fet­tered ac­cess to weaponry lent them a rep­u­ta­tion of hav­ing a pen­chant for a life of crime.

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