Grasia - Orientation



The term "Grasia" refers to the Rajput and other landholders in sections of Gujarat and Rajasth, where they hold lands given to them as garas (landlords) by the chieftains for maintenance. It is said that the term "Grasia" is derived from the native term for "landlords." The Grasias are the principal inhabitants of the Bhakkar section of Pakistani Punjab, and also of parts of Kachchh District, in Gujarat. Sir John Malcolm noted that the term "Girasias" denotes "chiefs who were driven from their possessions by invaders and established and maintained their claim to a share of the revenue upon the ground of their power to disturb or prevent its collection." The word can be derived from the Sanskrit giras, which signifies "mouthful," and in the past it was used metaphorically to designate the small share of the produce of the country that these plunderers claimed. The Grasias are said to have come from Mewar many centuries ago, "and as they still have their internal 'Gots' or circles of affinity (such as Parmars, Chouhan, Rathoi, etc.) upon the model of a regular clan, we may perhaps assume that they are the descendants of Rajputs by Bhil women," according to P. C. Dave.

In Maharashtra State the Grasias are on the list of Scheduled Tribes as "Dungri-Grasias." The Grasias speak a dialect of their own that is close to Bhili, with Bhili being closely related to Gujarati.


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