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Baloch Living in India

Baloch people in India are citizens or residents of India who are of Baloch ancestry. They originate from the Balochistan region of neighbouring Pakistan, and are part of the Baloch diaspora.

History

Even after the partition, it was common for the Baloch from India to visit their extended families in Pakistan, mainly in Karachi. In recent decades, this became difficult due to tightened visa restrictions. 

Demographics

There are around 300 Baloch families living in Mumbai, numbering about 1,500 individuals. They are scattered across the outer western suburbs and ghettos of Mumbai’s metropolitan area. The vast majority of them belong to a working class background, having little formal education, and are employed as manual labourers or drivers.

The Bhagnari are Hindu Baloch community living in India, who trace their origin to the Southern Balochistan but migrated to India during the Partition.

Culture

Some Baloch in India have held onto their cultural practices and traditions, including their clothing, music, and their native language Balochi. The women wear a traditional dress known as pashk, an elaborate, handwoven two-piece costume which resembles a kurta-pyjama. Balochi folk music is known for its incorporation of drums and beats.

Entertainment industry

There are many Indian actors from the Hindi film industry Bollywood who, although not Baloch by ethnicity, have origins in the Baluchistan Province of British India (now Pakistan). They include the actress Veena Kumari, born in Quetta; Raaj Kumar, a Kashmiri Pandit born in Loralai; Suresh Oberoi, a Punjabi Hindu born in Quetta; and Kader Khan, an ethnic Pathan born in Pishin. According to some sources, the Pathan actor Amjad Khan was also born in Quetta, however his place of birth is recorded as Peshawar.

In the Hindi film industry, the Baloch are particularly well known as professional stunt performers and drivers who are hired to choreograph dangerous action sequences. One such performer, Wahid Lala, was the first stuntman from this community who started his career in Bollywood in 1951, working in seven Bimal Roy and nine Jugal Kishore film productions, including as a stunt double for actor Pran. His sons and grandsons have collectively worked in around 300 Hindi, Gujarati, Marathi, Bengali, Telugu and Kannada films.[1]

Faiz Baloch, a social media celebrity, is one of the prominent TikTok and Instagram influencers in India, having amassed a following of over 9.4 million and 2.8 million respectively on the two platforms as of July 2019.

References

  1. Nair, Roshni (3 December 2016). “Mumbai’s filmi daredevils with a cross-border history”Hindustan Times. Retrieved 9 July 2020.
  2.  Salman, Peerzada (22 November 2014). “The Baloch of Mumbai & women of Karachi”Dawn. Retrieved 9 July 2020.
  3. Masood, Tooba (22 November 2014). “Bombay, the Baloch and the Karachi connection”The Express Tribune. Retrieved 9 July 2020.
  4.  Modak, Sadaf (7 November 2016). “A piece of Balochistan in Mumbai since Partition — 150 families & Khatti Dal”Indian Express. Retrieved 9 July 2020.
  5. ^ Srivastava, Kanchan (3 November 2016). “Ramdas Athawale seeks OBC quota for Indian Baloch community”DNA News. Retrieved 22 July 2020.
  6.  Roshni Nair (3 December 2016). “Mumbai’s filmi daredevils with a cross-border history”Hindustan Times. Retrieved 9 July 2020.
  7.  Sadaf Modak (7 November 2016). “A piece of Balochistan in Mumbai since Partition — 150 families & Khatti Dal”. Retrieved 20 October 2020.
  8. ^ Pradhan, Bharathi S. (29 August 2010). “Maid in heaven for Vivek”. Telegraph India. Retrieved 9 July 2020.
  9. ^ Mahmood, Rafay (1 January 2019). “Kader Khan: The Kakar from Balochistan who ruled Bollywood”. The Express Tribune. Retrieved 29 May 2020.
  10. Singh, Mayank Pratap (6 September 2016). “Kader Khan to Amjad Khan, Bollywood legends who hail from Balochistan”. India Today. Retrieved 29 May 2020.
  11. Yesvi, Affan (29 August 2016). “How Balochistan gave birth to the best of Bollywood”. Daily O. Retrieved 29 May2020.
  12. ^ Rao, Srinath; Modak, Sadaf (22 July 2019). “Men at centre of TikTok video row are a social media rage”. Indian Express. Retrieved 9 July 2020.
  13. ^ “TikTok Star Faiz Baloch To Debut In A Web Series And A Bollywood Film”. Asian Age. 25 August 2019. Retrieved 9 July 2020.

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Marian Martin (top left), Goolam Badoola Rind (top right) and three of their children.(Supplied: Gohar Rind )

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