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Introduction / History
The Bhatia of India used to be warriors and are now mainly in commerce and trade. They say they are descendants of Kshatriya or Rajputs. During the sixth century, Raja Bhoopat ruled in Lahore and his dynasty was called the Bhati or Bhatti dynasty. This is where the name Bhatia came from.
Where are they Located?
They are supposed to have their origins in the province of Sindh. They are mainly in the north west of India. They can be found in Delhi and in the states of Punjab, Jammu, Kashmir, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Gujarat and Haryana.
What are Their Lives Like?
From the Bhatia, main groups are the Jats, Punjabi, Halai, Jakhar, Navgam, Kutchi and Veha. The ones from the Jamnagar region are called Halai Bhatia and others can be called by their group name for example Punjabi Bhatias. Boys and girls whose blood relations are beyond seven years can marry. Widows cannot remarry. This resulted in the forming of groups or clans. They have different dress styles depending on where they live.
The majority of Bhatias are Hindus. They follow a Hindu sect called Pushtimarg. Some of the Bhatias are Sikhs and Muslims. The Upanayana ceremony is performed where a young boy has a thread that is regarded as holy and is a symbol for a promise made to regard his debt to the creditor, his father and his preceptor. The initiation is done by a Guru giving him a Vedic hymn regarded as encouraging righteous wisdom and is called the Gayatri Mantra.
The Bhatia have been a success in trade and commerce like textiles, cotton, steel, iron, shipping and mining.
The Punjabi Bhatias are looked at as being the main ones in India. They are mainly in the Punjab and in Delhi and many have gone to other countries.
Some of the foremost groups of the Bhatia originated from the main work they do or from their crafts.