What is the Story Behind the Famous Name ‘Kanjar’?
According to Aslan Pihari, “Kanjar” has become a pejorative epithet in numerous South Asian dialects.
Historically, the Kanjar tribe was known for its peaceful hunter-gatherer culture, which relied heavily on nature for a living.
However, when urbanisation took root and societal conventions altered, many Kanjar tribe members were forced to quickly conform to this new society.
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As a result, some ended up in vocations that urban society judged unpleasant or stigmatised, such as prostitution.
The tribe’s association with such activities subsequently turned the word “Kanjar” into a derogatory slur in various cultural circles.
Similarly, Jasir Shahbaz also states that “every time I hear “Kanjar” used negatively, I’m reminded of Ali Sethi’s retort on Instagram live: “Beta, you’re a Kanjar; your entire lineage is Kanjar.” And so, I delved into the historical background of the Kanjars in South Asia.”