‘A popular saying refers to the Hussaini Brahmins or Dutts thus:
Wah re Dutt Sultan,
Hindu ka Dharm
Musalman ka Iman,
Adha Hindu Adha Musalman
Oh! Dutt, the king
[Who follows] the religion of the Hindu
and the faith of the Muslim
Half Hindu, half Muslim.’
|HERE IS WHAT THE COLUMBIA ENCYLOPEDIA SAYS:
[Sixth Edition – 2001]“Kaaba or Caaba’ (both: kä´b or kä´b) (KEY) [Arab.,=cube], the central, cubic, stone structure, covered by a black cloth, within the Great Mosque in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. The sacred nature of the site predates Islam: tradition says that the Kaaba was built by Adam and rebuilt byAbraham and the descendants of Noah. Also known as the House of God, it is the center of the circumambulations performed during the hajj, and it is toward the Kaaba that Muslims face in their prayers (see liturgy, Islamic). Pre-Islamic Meccans used it as a central shrine housing their many idols, most notable of which were al-Lat, al-Uzza, and Manat, collectively known as al-Gharaniq or the Daughters of God, and Hubal, a martial deity. The Black Stone, possibly of meteoric origin, is located at one of its outside corners. Also dating from pre-Islamic times as a heavenly relic, this stone is venerated and ritually kissed. Worn hollow by the centuries of veneration, the stone is held together by a wide silver band. The actual structure of the Kaaba has been demolished and rebuilt several times in the course of its history. Around the Kaaba is a restricted area, haram, extending in some directions as far as 12 mi, into which only Muslims may enter.”
The above provides impeccable evidence about that pragmatic role played by the Datt Mohyals in the catastrophe of Karbala. There are more than a dozen ballads composed centuries ago which vividly and with great passion describe the scenario of the historic event.
Photo by Suzanna Olsson
In the Preface of a famous historical novel by Munshi Prem Chand, titled “Karbala”, published in 1924 from Lucknow, has stated that the Hindus who fought and sacrificed their lives in the holy war of Karbala, are believed to be the descendants of Ashvathama (hero of “maha bharata”).This clearly establishes their link with the Datts who consider Ashvathama as an ancestor of their clan.
I have written articles on the Vedic roots of Arabia.
If one were to look at the history of Arabia and Africa, one would find that, in the case of Arabia, the entire history of Arabia is dispensed with something like’Idol worshipers were defeated ‘ and Muhammad established his religion,Islam; in the case of Africa it is dismissed with ‘Tribes with superstitious beliefs were engaged in internecine war!( I am surprised that those who make this statement are also the people who say with a straight face that Human migration began from, Africa and it was in Africa Humans evolved from forgetting that such an early civilization could have nothing to offer except wars!).
But real history is different.
Saudi Arabia,, in the earlier days, was a part of Mesopotamia /Sumeria and these were ruled by Sumerians.
One can find , among the Kings of Sumeria, in the Kings List of Sumeria, the names of Lord Rama, his father Dasaratha and Bharatha.
And there is the Tamil connection of Arabia with the unique practice patronizing Poets in Tamil style by offering Gifts to them in return for their praising the Kings.
Sapthapathi was practiced in Arabia and Navagraha Idols were found in Mecca.
Not to forget that Mecca was /is a Shiva temple.
Chandra Gupta Maurya ruled over Arabia and his inscription is found in Mecca.
Prophet’s Uncle composed a Poem on Lord Shiva and the hereditary rights of maintaining the Shiva temple was entrusted to Brahmin Families who settled there.
There are reports that Seramaan Perumaal Nayanaar, a Shiva Bhaktha and King of present Kerala having met prophet and became a follower of Islam.
The evidence about Seramaan Perumaal becoming a follower of Islam is not strong.
Now to the Brahmins and Brahmin Kings of Arabia.
According to “vide Bandobast Report of Gujarat” by Mirza Azam Beg page 422 and widely famous folk songs, “Later on, when umvies and abbasies let loose an orgy of vendetta on Ahl e Bayet (A.S), Shias and Datts, then Datts returned to their motherland around 700 AD and settled at Dina Nagar, District Sialkot and some drifted to as far as the holy Pushkar in Rajasthan. Starting from Harya Bandar (modern Basra on the bank of river Tigris) with swords in hand and beating durms, they forced their way through Syria and Asia Minor and marching onwards captured Ghazni, Balkh and Bukhara. After annexing Kandhar, they converged on Sindh and crossing the Sindh at Attock they entered the Punjab”.
An ancestor of Rahab named Sidh Viyog Datt assumed the title of Sultan and made Arabia (old Iraq) his home. He was a tough and tenacious fighter.
He was also known as Mir Sidhani. He was a worshipper of Brahma. He was the son of the stalwart Sidh Jhoja (Vaj) who was a savant and saint and lived in Arabia (Iraq) around 600 AD.
The supporters of imam Hassan (A.S) and imam Hussain (A.S) honored the Datts with the title of “Hussaini Brahmin” and treated them with great reverence in grateful recognition of the supreme sacrifices made by them in the war of Karbala. According to Jang Nama, written by Ahmed Punjabi, pages 175-176, “At the time to the Karbala, fourteen hundred Hussaini Brahmins lived in Baghdad alone”
According to the “encyclopedia of Indian casts” page 579 “Hussaini Brahmins are a group bringing harmony and brotherhood between Muslim and Hindu religions. They are greatly influenced by martydom of Imam Hussain (A.S), grandson of ProphetMuhammad(peace be upon him and on his children), at Karbala in 680 AD. It is also claimed that their ancestors were fought with imam hussain and martyred during the war of karbala. When the holy month of Muharram starts these Brahmins starts lamenting the death of Imam Hussain (A.S) in Lucknow with the muslims. Brahmins are the highest caste in Hindu hierarchy”
The Hussaini Brahmin sect, located mostly in Indian Punjab, also known as Dutts or Mohyals. Unlike other Brahmin clans, the Hussaini Brahmins have had a long martial tradition, which they trace back to the event of Karbala.
Some Mohyal Brahmins migrated eastward and became as some sub-divisions of Bhumihar Brahmins, some of whom are also descendants of Hussaini Brahmins and mourn the death of Imam Hussain (A.S). An eminent example was Sir Ganesh Dutt Singh. Sir Ganesh Dutt Singh, who was a freedom fighter, administrator and educationist in which capacity he did a lot for improving education and health services in the state of Bihar in the pre-independence era. Sir Ganesh Dutta made generous donations from his earnings and personal property for the development of educational institutions, like radium institute in Patna Medical College, Darbhaga Medical College, Ayurvedic College and schools for the blind, deaf and dumb, among others. A short film based on the life and works of Sir Dutt has been made by Prakash Jha. His essays, articles and books etc, clearly show his love towards imam hussain (A.S).
According to a Hindu news paper “Par tap(English)” 21 April 1949
“The Hussaini Brahmins are concentrating in “satghara katas” (the Rawalpindi-Jhelum regions of Pakistan) for the mourning of the muslim imam “hussain” (A.S). According to the traditions, the Hussaini Brahmins believe that their ancestor Rahab Dutt and his sons fought on the side of Imam Hussain (A.S) at Karbala and they were martyred along with the Imam. They remained Hindus but the tragedy of Kerbala was commemorated from generation to generation in their families and even now their clans observe it all over India, although the younger generation is less keen on such traditions”.
What is particularly striking about the observances of the month of Muharram in large parts of India is the prominent participation of Hindus in the ritual mourning. In several towns and villages, Hindus join Muslims in lamenting the death of Hussain (A.S), by sponsoring or taking part in lamentation rituals and taazia processions. In Lucknow, seat of the Shia nawabs of Awadh, prominent Hindu noblemen like Raja Tikait Rai and Raja Bilas Rai built Imambargahs to house Alams, standards representing the Karbala event.
The non-Muslim tribal Lambadi communities in Andhra Pradesh have their own genre of Muharram lamentation songs in Telugu. Among certain Hindu castes in Rajasthan, the Karbala battle is recounted by staging plays in which the death of Imam Hussain(A.S) is enacted, after which the women of the village come out in a procession, crying and cursing Yazid for his cruelty. This custom is known as “Pitna Daalna”.
In large parts of rural India, Hindus believe that if barren women slip under a Moharrum Alam they would be blessed with a child.
Another story, which seems reliable (but no strong historic avidence is found yet to prove it completely), is related as to how the Dutts of Punjab came to be known as Hussaini Brahmins. According to this version, one of the wives of Imam Hussain(A.S), the Persian princess bibi Shahr Banu(A.S), was the sister of “Chandra Lekha” or “Mehr Bano”, the wife of an Indian king called Chandragupta famous as “raja jaisalmer”.
When it became clear that Yazid was adamant on killing the Imam Hussain (A.S), and “Raja jaisalmer” received the information regarding this, he came to Iraq with a large army to assist the Imam Hussain (A.S). By the time they arrived, however, the Imam (A.S) had been slain. In the town of Kufa, in Iraq, he attacked Damascus the capital of yazid and got martyred by yazeed army however Imam Ali ibn al Hussain (A.S), known as zain ul Abideen, made them alive by the grace of Allah. They went back gathered their army, met with Mukhtar Saqaffi, (a disciple of the Imam(A.S)), who arranged for them to stay in a special part of the town, which even today is known by the name of Dair-i-Hindiya or ‘the Indian quarter’.
Some Dutt Brahmins, under the leadership of one Bhurya Dutt, got together with Mukhtar Saqafi to avenge the death of the Imam. They stayed behind in Kufa, while the rest returned to India. Here they built up a community of their own, calling themselves Hussaini Brahmins, keeping alive the memory of their links with the Imam (A.S).
The Hussaini Brahmins believe that in the “Bhagwadgita” Krishna had foretold the event of the Imam’s death at Karbala. According to them, the Kalanki Purana, (the last of eighteen Puranas), as well as the Atharva Veda, the fourth Veda, refer to Imam Hussain(A.S) as the divine incarnation or avatar of the ”Kali Yug”, the present age. They hold Rasool Allah, in particular reverence, referring to him as “MAHA DEV MAHA MADD” (greatest God) and Imam Ali (A.S), (Imam Hussain’s father, and son-in-law and cousin of the Prophet Muhammad(peace be upon him and on his children)), with the honorific title of ‘Om Murti’. (God’s face).
They also believe that in “ramaayana” “SIRI RAAM JI” told about the birth of Prophet MUHAMMAD (peace be upon him and his children).
Uttar ramaayana says “Siri RAAM said! Behold! that after 4000 years there would be a revelation of a “dev atee dev” (GOD of the gods) near the world’s greatest temple of black stone (kaba) in the land of dates, his name would be “MAHA DEV MAHA MADD” his greatest disciple “OM MURTI (God’s face) shall miraculously revealed beyond the black stone temple. His daughter “DURGA” will get married with “OM MURTI” known as Lion of God and they will have two lions one of them will be martyred on a river bank however he would be thirsty for three days”
Though other Hindus do not believe that it is said for Prophet Muhammad(peace be upon him and his children) but The Hussaini Brahmins observe it like Muslim beliefs.
The Hussaini Brahmins, along with other Hindu devotees of the Imam Hussain (A.S), are today a rapidly decreasing. Younger generation of Hussaini Brahmins are said to be abandoning their ancestral heritage, some seeing it as embarrassingly deviant.
No longer, it seems, can an ambiguous, yet comfortable, liminality be sustained, fuzzy communal identities giving way under the relentless pressure to conform to the logic of neatly demarcated ‘Hindu’ and ‘Muslim’ communities. And so, these and scores of other religious communities that once straddled the frontier between Hinduism and Islam seem destined for perdition, or else to folkloric curiosities that tell of a bygone age, when it was truly possible to be both Hindu as well as Muslim at the same time.’
Citation and Reference.
Author: Syed Haider Jafri. ( http://haiderjafri.com/hussaini-brahmins/ )