Manuscripts

Mackenzie Collection: A Descriptive Catalogue of the Oriental Manuscripts and Other Articles Illustrative of the Literature, History, Statistics and Antiquities of the South of India Collected by the Late Lieut.-Col. Colin Mackenzie, Surveyor General of India

Mackenzie Collection: A Descriptive Catalogue of the Oriental Manuscripts and Other Articles Illustrative of the Literature, History, Statistics and Antiquities of the South of India Collected by the Late Lieut.-Col. Colin Mackenzie, Surveyor General of India

Niyogi Contents Theories of origin The origin of Niyogi Brahmin community is descending from their ancestors originally from the northern as well as north-western geographical region of present day Afghanistan,Pakistan and India. [ 1 ] About six-thousand intelligent Brahmins, capable of administration, management with warfare skills were chosen to help Kshatriyas (ruling caste of India) in desperate need in defending the Indian country, by piloting the Royal vimanas (chariots) in war and in peace. Hence the origin of the word Aaruvela (Telugu. Aaru-vela = six-thousand = 6000; Niyogi = a derivative of word 'Niyogimpabadda' in Telugu which means appointed). Niyogin in Sanskrit means employed or appointed or assigned and it is quite probable that Niyogis were given this name because they accepted secular employment assigned to them. [ 2 ] In the later centuries they migrated to various parts of the country in pursuit of better and Greener pastures. They belong to the Brahma-Kshatriya group who took secular duties like the military and administration. The peoples with the last name of Durga do consider themselves as part of this sub-caste, but their origin is subject to discussion [ 3 ] It is said in Shastras, that one should live near a river, away from relatives but close to place where medical help is available. Thus, they crossed Vindhyas. As they crossed over Vindhyas they came across perennial River Godavari few of them followed flow of River Godavari. A few crossed the river and went farther south and came across another perennial River Krishna. they followed flow of River Krishna. Some went further down tracing origin of Krishna River and came across the main tributary Tungabhadra and some other minor tributaries of river Krishna and settled down around hundreds of its tributaries. Some who went tracing the tributaries of Tunga and Bhadra went further west and south west, nearly to the west coast in Malenadu source of river Cauvery. Some groups followed flow of River Kaveri and went to Tanjavur, Madurai and other areas in present day Tamil Nadu. Brahmins are known by their paths of belief, like Smartas, Vaishnavas or Madhvas. Most of Brahmins in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu belong to the Smarta Brahmin group. (Though in later years population of Madhvas saw increase in Karnataka where saint 'Madvacharya' spread the message of dwaitha philosophy) like Duggaraju's. Smarthas follow Smritis and they are all followers of Adi Guru, Adi Sankara Acharya. The Smarta Brahmins follow Apastamba Smriti or Apastamba Sutra (not Manu Smriti). Apasthamba sutra dates back to pre ( 600 BC) and they were the ones who mastered the arts of administration, medicine and teaching. They are the earliest law-makers of South India who lived on the banks of the Godavari river. Soon, their works and regulations like Boudhayana, Parasara, Yajnvalkya Sutras, came into practice and were passed as laws, especially in the courts of Sri Krishna Deva Raya. [ 4 ] The Smarta Brahmins in Andhra Pradesh can be grouped into two major divisions formed about a thousand to 700 years ago (most probably during Kakatiya rule), Niyogi and Vaidiki groups, and also the smaller group of Bhatt (Bhattu, Bhatteria, Bhatia, Bhattarika are other variants.) This classification is based on the inherent ability and mastery of each of the three groups in administration, spiritual practices and cooking respectively. Traditionally believed to have descended from Lord Parasurama avatar. Niyogis are those who gave up religious vocations (especially the priesthood which used to be the traditional vocation of Brahmins) and moved on to various secular vocations including military activities. So Niyogis of South India are similar to Bhumihars of North India who also gave up priesthood. There is a lot of brotherhood between Niyogi and Bhumihar of whom many, though not all, belong to the Saryupareen Brahmin division of Kanyakubja Brahmins. [ 5 ] The descendants of these Brahmin administrators, after Parashurama stopped warring and became an ascetic sanyasi, gave the thrones back to the descendants of Kshatriyas who had survived because they and their ex-ruler parents and grandparents hid in the forests. By this time, having forgotten the ways of performing their past priestly occupations, the Brahmin ex-rulers took to land-owning as a full-time occupation with the administrative experience they gained during the interruption of Kshatriya rule. [ 6 ] The Satavahana Vamsam (dynasty) that is said to have given the name Andhra to the present state was from Niyogi clan. Traditionally and even today Niyogis depend on, put emphasis on, and orient themselves towards modern education. As ministers in the courts of kings and minor-zamindaars (landlords) as Palegallu feudal Lords, Niyogis earned a good name for their administrative abilities and progressive attitude (sarva dharma samanatha). Many of them were also village chief-officers like munsabs, talukdaars, and accountants, Karanams (Andhra) or Patwaris (Telangana) until recently. [ 7 ] Etymology According to Jogendranath Bhattacharya, the word Niyogi is derived from Yoga. which means religious contemplation or meditation, as opposed to Yaga. which means religious sacrifice. Niyogin in Sanskrit also means employed or appointed and it is probable that Niyogis were given this name because they accept secular employment. Subdivisions Over the past millennium the Niyogis have been further divided further into various groups: Aruvela (Aru-Vela translates as Six-Thousand = 6000) Niyogi Pradhamasakha/Kanveyulu/Yagna... Nandavarikulu Karanakamma Vyaparulu Golkonda Vyaparulu Sristikaranalu/Sistukaranalu/... or Karanam Pakanati Pranganati The Pradhamasakha group which belongs to the Shukla Yajurveda School. They are believed to have migrated from Maharashtra after the fall of Shivaji's empire. In Maharashtra too, they are considered Marathas / Kshatriyas of the Pradhamasakhi community. After migrating to Andhra Pradesh, they claimed themselves Pradhamasakha Niyogis since they were always in secular vocations. They belong to the Yagnavalkya, Kanveyua clan. The Aruvela Niyogis are the largest Niyogi group. Different explanations exist for the coining of the phrase Aruvela Niyogilu or 6000 Niyogis. They, as well as the majority of Brahmins in Andhra Pradesh, belong to the Krishna Yajurveda School. Some part of Krishna District, Guntur District and the surrounding areas was called as Aru vela naadu. As these people belong to that area, they were called so. Another theory asserts that 6000 Brahmins left drought- and famine-stricken regions of present-day Maharashtra and travelled to coastal and riverine regions of Andhra. These Brahmin settlers and their descendants, who adopted secular vocations, were termed the 6000 (or Aaruvela) Niyogi. Many surnames among Maharashtra Brahmins and Aruvela Niyogis are sound similar, this fact is considered by many to support for this theory of migration. According to prominent scholars like Korlimarla Lakshmayya Pantulu, Gundlapalli Subba Row, and others Aaruvela Niyogi Brahmins were appointed as village heads and accountants and training imparted to them, way back in 13th or 14th century AD Pravaras Every Brahmin family will belong to a particular Gotram and every Gotram will have a Pravara. A Pravara indicates the foremost noble ancestor(s) that contributed to the propagation of a particular Gotram to which the family belongs. This means that every Gotram descends from a lineage of Rishis. This lineage may be patrilinear or a continuation of a line of teachers and students (Guru-Sishya parampara). A Pravara may indicate just one Rishi or a line of Rishis (which may number up to nine) and is named based on the number of Rishis is indicates. For instance, if a Pravara contains just one Rishi, it means that the Gotram descends directly from that one Rishi and is termed 'Ekaarsheya Pravara' (Eka + Arsheya) and similarly, one with three Rishis is called 'Trayaarsheya' and so on. Pravaras are broadly grouped under the names of seven Rishis - Agastya, Angirasa, Atri, Bhrigu, Kashyapa, Vasishtha and Vishwamitra. It means that all Brahmins, regardless of their ethno-linguistic group, will have one of these seven Rishis as the only one or one of the foremost ancestors. Among all Brahmins, marriages are fixed solely based on what the Gotrams and Pravaras indicate. Horoscopes are matched after verifying the Gotram and Pravara. A Gotram may have more than one variants for a Pravara. For instance, Shandilya Gotram has a Trayaarsheya Pravara which is Kashyapa, Aavatsara Daivala. But for some families, for the same Shandilya Gotram, there may be a different set of Rishis in their Pravara. E.g. Kasyapa, Daivala, Asitha or Kasyapa, Aavatsaara, Shandilya. This may mean that some families consider a guru-sishya line and others, a patrilinear line. Nandavariks The Nandavariks are Rig-vedins and come under ‘Asvalayana Sutra’ or principle and follow ‘Smartha Sampradaya’ as distinguished from ‘Madhava’ or ‘Vaishnava sampradayas’. ‘Asvalayana Sutra’ is one of the six Sutras followed by Rig Vedins, the others being Apastabmha (Krishna Yahjur Vedins), Kathyayana (Sukla Yajur Vedins) Drakshayana (Sama Vedins), Vatsyayana (Sukla Yajur Vedins). The Nandavariks, were known as such as they were ‘Nandavara Agrahara Graheetas’, meaning that the Agrahara or village of Nandavaram was given as a reward to them. In the early years of the Kali age, King Nandana Chakravarti who ruled over Nandavaram is said to have invited 500 families of Brahmins from Benaras. These 500 families belong to thirteen Gothrams. They prayed 'kasi vishalakshi' as 'Sri Choudeswari Devi',and feel like daughter sister (Adapaduchu/Adabidda). Because Sri Vishalaksi Devi came from Benaras to Nandavaram as witness for them of Challenge to King Nandana Chakravarti. After this, these families became 'Winners of Nandavaram Agrahara'.Sri Vishalakshi Devi settled as ‘Sri Choudeswari Devi’ in ‘Nandavaram’. Sri Choudeswari Devi gave surname 'Raja Karanalu', Means 'The Kings of Karanams', and also gave the village of Nandavaram to them as reward. Allasani, Kristipati Karanam, Kakanuri Karanam, Kanala Karanam, Apparaju, Mallamaraju are some of families belongs to Nandavarika Niyogi Brahmins. Current status Niyogis, possibly even before the time of the Vijayanagar empire, gave up religious priesthood and took up various secular vocations such as scholars, administrators, ministers, social reformers. So they comprised a secular 'scholar' caste, but with the caveat that their traditions still required them to follow religious practices such as vegetarianism and rituals for prayer/puja in their own homes with their own families. In these modern times they haven't forgotten their heritage of the knowledge of the Vedas, and they still try to follow and understand the vedas with their implications in life. But since Niyogis aren't priests, religious gifts are rejected by them while Hindu religious, marriage and other ceremony rituals aren't performed by them. Andhra state's Niyogis have counterparts in other states such as Chitpavans in Maharashtra. Mohyals in Punjab. and Tyagis and Bhumihars in many other parts of the Indian Subcontinent. [ 9 ] Niyogis are dependent upon and put emphasis upon modern education, administration (Niyogis have traditionally been well represented in the local administration in Andhra Pradesh state), management (Diplomats, bureaucrats, Administrators and politicians) etc. A historical Telugu aphorism is Yendu Niyogimpavalenanna Niyogimpadagina vaadu Niyogi translated Niyogi is the person who can be trusted for successful completion of the entrusted tasks where Niyogi-mpa translates as entrusted and/or assigned. In the past, Niyogis were ministers in the courts of kings and feudal lords, zamindars and talukdars. Sometimes Niyogis were even peasants and well-off farmers with ownership of land acreage holdings. [ 10 ] Many Niyogis held the positions of village accountants/clerk chief-officers known in the native language as Karanams (in the coastal region of Andhra) or Patwaris (in inland/Telangana region of the Telugu-speaking lands), or Patnaik (uttarandhra, orissa,A.P. - srikakulam, vijayanagaram, vishakapatnam and E.G. Dists.) until recently, as heritage vocations. As a result of legislation of the Indian federal and state and local governments undertaking affirmative action programs such as reservations /quotas in educational, administrational, professional and public sector institutions for some castes (scheduled castes and scheduled tribes and other backward castes ) from which Niyogis are excluded (as Niyogis are considered to be among the castes ineligible for affirmative action at this time) while the Niyogi 'heritage' village positions were abolished, Niyogis lost a major fraction of their economic position in their local societies. But in the present generation, things have changed for the better of the Niyogi community, as its members are doing well in other vocations due to their continuation of scholastic pursuits leading to them being able to find good employment in knowledge-based industries such as information technology, biotechnology, engineering while also achieving senior positions in private sector with many Niyogis even establishing their own businesses. Notable individuals V V Giri - Bharat Ratna former President of India Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan - Bharat Ratna former President of India Pingali Venkayya - former designer of the national Flag of India Tanguturi Prakasam Pantulu - former Chief Minister for the state of Andhra Banda Kanakalingeshwara Rao - famous Telugu drama and film actor. P V Narasimha Rao - former Prime Minister of India at time of economic transformation from autarky to free market Mathukumalli V. Subbarao - Indian Mathematician Mathukumalli Vidyasagar - Control theorist Narayana Kocherlakota - Current President of Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Kona Prabhakara Rao - former Finance Minister. Speaker Andhra Pradesh State Assembly Legislature, Governor. Tikkana - Telugu poetry's original triumvirate who also translated the epic Mahabharat from Sanskrit to Telugu - Minister Timmarusu MahaMantri - minister to Emperor Krishnadevaraya of Vijayanagara Allasani Peddana - Telugu poet and Telugu court jester for Emperor Krishnadevaraya Pingali Suranna - Telugu poet in the court of Emperor Krishnadevaraya Tenali Ramakrishnudu - Telugu court jester for Emperor Krishnadevaraya Kancharla Gopanna - Telugu poet Madanna and Akkanna - ministers to Sultans of Golconda Kandukuri Veeresalingam - reformer, worked for women's suffrage /emancipation movement in India. Gurazada Appa Rao - reformer, eminent writer,Kanyasulkam Ghantasala Venkateswara Rao - Old Time eminent South Indian Singer Music composer. Nanduri Bapiraju - former Andhra region High Court Judge Yellapragada Subbarao - scientist who was an emigrant to Boston, USA, and contributed to therapy for Cancer Pingali Nagendrarao - old-time scriptwriter of Telugu movies Adurthi Subba Rao - old-time director of Telugu movies CSR Anjaneyulu - old-time film actor SP Balasubramanyam -Eminent Singer Kasinadhuni Viswanath - Film maker P. Susheela - Singer Bapu - Famous artist and cartoonist V.V.S. Laxman - Indian Cricketer Adivi Bapiraju - writer of Telugu literature Gudipati Venkata Chalam - writer of Telugu literature Nanduri Subbarao - poet who authored Yenki Paatalu Kovvali Lakshmi Narasimha Rao - author of 1000 Telugu novels, popularly known as Kovvali vari navalalu Pingali Lakshmikantam - playwright for Telugu theatre dramas Nanduri Prasada Rao - Indian freedom fighter Bhogaraju Pattabhi Sitaramayya - Indian freedom fighter and founder of Andhra Bank Komarraju Venkata Lakshmana Rao - Indian historian Chittamuru Ramaiah - follower of theosophy. worked with Annie Beasant, worked for Indian self-rule Viswanatha Satyanarayana - Poet Sadguru Sivananda Murty - Guru Swami Sahajanand Saraswati - Swami Gollapudi Maruthi Rao - film maker Tadepalli Lakshmi Kanta Rao - Telugu film actor Chakri Toleti - actor/director Kota Srinivasa Rao - film actor Kondapalli Dasaradh Kumar - film maker Kona Venkat - film maker Vedala Hemachandra - Professional singer Tanikella Bharani - Veteran writer Telugu film actor Mynampati Sreeram Chandra -(Telugu:శ్రీరా... చంద్ర మైనంపాటి) professional singer - 2010 Indian Idol winner W V V B Ramalingam - Patriot, Freedom fighter, Educationist, Chairman of Berhampur Municipality,Guru of V.V.Giri Kotikalapudi Venkata Krishna Rao, former Chief of Indian army and a former Governor of Jammu Kashmir, Nagaland, Manipur and Tripura. Mullapudi Venkata Ramana. Author of Budugu and former Telugu film screen writer. References ^ P. 130 The Pakistan gazetteer, Volume 3 By Cosmo Publications (Firm) ^ Article on Brahmins of Andhra Pradesh at Vepachedu Educational Foundation ^ The Tale of Tuluva Brahmins ^ The Tribes and Castes of the Central Provinces of India By R.V. Russell ^ Sherring, M.A. (First ed 1872, new ed 2008). Hindu Tribes and Castes as Reproduced in Benaras . 6A, Shahpur Jat, New Delhi-110049, India: Asian Educational Services. ISBN 978-8120620360. ^ Crooke, William (1999). The Tribes and Castes of the North-Western Provinces and Oudh . 6A, Shahpur Jat, New Delhi-110049, India: Asian Educational Services. pp. 1809 (at page 64). ISBN 8120612108. ^ Brahmins of Andhra Pradesh. http://www.vedah.net/manasans... ^ Mackenzie Collection: a Descriptive Catalogue of the Oriental Manuscripts and Other Articles Illustrative of the Literature, History, Statistics and Antiquities of the South of India; Collected by the late Colin Mackenzie, Surveyor General of India; By H. H. Wilson; Asiatic Press; 1828. Vol 1 - Page cxxii, Vol 2 - Pages lxxv, lxxvi ^ P. 29, Cultural History from the Matsyapura?a . by Sureshachandra Govindlal Kantawala ^ P. 201, Professor A.L. Basham, My Guruji and Problems and Perspectives of Ancient . by Sachindra Kumar Maity Pulipaka Ramachandra Kashyapa - Noted Lawyer Movie Star from 50's 60' Further Reading M.A. Sherring, Hindu Tribes and Castes as Reproduced in Benaras, Asian Educational Services. New Delhi, First ed 1872, new ed 2008. Indian Economic and Social History Review 1987, Himanshu P Ray, 24: 443 Ancient India: a history of its culture and civilization, Damodar Dharmanand Kosambi, p.166-170 A social history of India, by SN Sadasivan Jogendra Nath Bhattacharya, Hindu Castes and Sects, Munshiram Manoharlal. Delhi, first edition 1896, new edition 1995. The re-colonization of Eurasia during the Late Glacial Maximum.(Passarino et al.) The expansion of the Kurgan people from the Pontic-Caspian steppe. which is associated with the spread of the Indo-European languages. (Semino 200) Swami Sahajanand Saraswati Rachnawali (Selected works of Swami Sahajanand Saraswati), Prakashan Sansthan, Delhi. 2003. Baldev Upadhyaya. Kashi Ki Panditya Parampara, Sharda Sansthan, Varanasi. 1985. E.A.H.Blunt, The Caste System of North India, S.Chand Publishers, 1969. Christopher Alan Bayly. Rulers, Townsmen, and Bazaars: North Indian Society in the Age of British Expansion, 1770–1870, Cambridge University Press. 1983. Anand A. Yang, Bazaar India: Markets, Society, and the Colonial State in Bihar, University of California Press. 1999. Castes and tribes of Southern India, By Edgar Thurston, K. Rangachari Hopkins, Religions of India, p.192 states: As to the fees, the rules are precise, and the propounders of them are unblushing. The priest performs the sacrifice for the fee alone, and it must consist of valuable garments, kine, horses, or gold; – when each is to be given is carefully stated. Gold is coveted most, for ‘this is immortality, the seed of Agni,’ and therefore peculiarly agreeable to the pious priest.(kerf kerf kerf baderf) Acharya Hazari Prasad Dwivedi Rachnawali, Rajkamal Prakashan, Delhi . External Links Categories: Social groups of India Indian castes Telugu Brahmin communities Social groups of Andhra Pradesh Wikimedi...