A photo from 'The People of India', published from 1868 to the early 1870s by WH Allen, for the India Office
|Regions with significant populations|
|• Sindhi • Urdu • Punjabi • Bengali •|
|• Islam 100% •|
|Related ethnic groups|
|• Turkic peoples • Mongol peoples|
The Mughals (Persian: مغول; Urdu: مغل; Arabic: مغول, also spelled Moghul or Mogul) are a number of culturally related clans of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. In theory, the Mughals are descended from the various Central Asian Turko-Mongol armies that settled in the region. The term Mughal (or Mughul in Persian) literally means Mongolian.
In North India
In the Punjab of Pakistan, the main clans of Punjabi Mughals are the Mirza Baigs descendents of the military leadership and warriors of the Mughal Empire as well as the Chagatai, and Barlas. They are Punjabi speaking and historically belonged to the aristocracy, with the majority belonging to the Sunni Hanafi sect. Today, marriages between Punjabi Mughals and Muslim Rajput are quite common, emulating historical customs when Mughal aristocrats formed blood alliances with the Punjabi Rajputs, who ruled princely states of Northern India.
In Uttar Pradesh (UP), their main clans are the Chagatai, Barlas, Douli, Qazilbash, Turkmen, Turk, Uzbek, Tajik, Kai and Chak. The Mughals of Uttar Pradesh belong to both the Sunni and Shia sects, with the majority belonging to the Sunni Hanafi sect. Sunni Mughals are usually orthodox in their religious outlook. The Shia Mughals of Awadh trace their entry into the region to the year 1750. The Mughals of UP are an endogamous community, marrying within their own community, or in communities of a similar status such as the Pathan and Muslim Rajput. The rural Mughals are farmers, and many own orchards, especially mango orchards, while in towns they are engaged in trade, handicrafts, and carpet weaving. Carpet weaving is an activity particularly associated with the UP Mughals.
The city of Delhi has always been associated with the Mughals, being the seat of the Mughal dynasty that ruled India for four centuries. Their settlements in Old Delhi date back to the 16th century when the first Mughal courtiers arrived with Babar. The Taimuri clan claims direct descent from the Mughal dynasty. Other sub-groups include the Chagatai, Turkman, Changezi,Douli, Barlas, Bakhst and Qazilbash. A large number of Mughals from old Delhi emigrated to Pakistan at partition. A small rump community is left in Delhi. They are still an endogamous community, marrying among themselves, or on occasions with communities of a similar status, such as the Pathan. The Taimuri are Sunni, while the Qazilbash and Turkmen are Shia.
- Muslim Caste in Uttar Pradesh (A Study of Culture Contact), Ghaus Ansari, Lucknow, 1960
- People of India Uttar Pradesh Volume XLII edited by A Hasan & J C Das page 986 to 990 Manohar Publications
- People of India Delhi Volume XX edited by T. Ghosh & S. Nath pp. 485-489, Manohar Publications