54 thoughts on “The Jatts do descend from Scythians”

  1. Two questions :-

    1. The Scythians samples we have so far are all characterised by heavy East Asian & possibly Siberian admixture. Do we see that among the Jatts & Rors ?

    2. Could the latest date of west eur – South eur admixture as per Adler not be because of the Rors admixing with an AASI heavy group from further inland ?

  2. 1. The Scythians samples we have so far are all characterised by heavy East Asian & possibly Siberian admixture. Do we see that among the Jatts & Rors ?

    i should have put quotes. i have no idea who these ‘scythians’ are. but it’s something weird. i just used the word scythians since the jatts use that word.

    2. Could the latest date of west eur – South eur admixture as per Adler not be because of the Rors admixing with an AASI heavy group from further inland ?

    yeah. if i get what you are saying the proto-jatt have a group without any ASI (or almost so) and then mix later. this is possible. seems to indicate LOTS of structure, more than we see today, but it’s possible.

    1. Yes, I agree the 50 generations ago admixture event seems to be when the Ror picked up more AASI type ancestry. That seems a lot more probable than admixture with any western source as nothing entered Haryana around that time, historically speaking.

      The AASI could even have been picked up by marital alliances with the neighboring Gujjars, who do seem to be more southern shifted compared to the Ror

  3. It looks like these “scythians” are mostly the AMT/AIT type folks rather than Kanishka/White huns folks. Is there any major population/ demographic change post Guptas ? I ask because i read about a theory that the Rajputs are also descended of some “foreigners”? Is this supported by genetic data?

      1. All the ancient Scythians samples that we have so far have East Asian admixture. And we have Scythians samples from a vast geographic region so it looks unlikely that there was a Scythian group somewhere hidden substantially different from what we have so far.

        This is one of the reasons, Narasimhan et al rule out steppe migration into South Asia from groups later than 1500 BC because they begin to show East Asian admixture from that time onwards.

      2. Because they do, especially after 1200 BC (iron age). All Iron age central Asian migrants have elevated east Asian (or Siberian), making it difficult to sympathize with iron age central Asian intrusion into India less likely.

        “We therefore considered an alternative model in which we treat them as a mix of Yamnaya and the Han (Supplementary Table 25). This model fits all of the Iron Age Scythian groups, consistent with these groups having ancestry related to East Asians not found in the other populations. Alternatively, the Iron Age Scythian groups can also be modelled as a mix of Yamnaya and the north Siberian Nganasan “

    1. Kanishka may actually be very similar to the Ror as he comes from Loulan, which is a corrupt form of Roran (refer to Professor Luders’ work on transference of the name Roruka from the Indus valley to the Tarim Basin)

  4. I think Pakistanis are White Europeans and Indians are Black Indians.

    chakk day phattay
    napp day killi
    subah lahoray
    shamm nun dilli

    Ya Allah! Labbaik ya Rasul Allah!
    I have finally seen the noor-ul Islam again. I am Muslim again, alhamdullilah!


    1. Jaggu

      What about the Pakistani Christians, they look quite dark to me.

      You need to get into the Sri Lankan mindset
      Indians+Pakistanis= Tamil

    1. LOL. Probably for the first time some group from the North is trying to take its lineage from a deccan group

      1. To me the Maratha origin theory always sounded dubious. Come to think of it, Battle of Panipat (1761 AD) is not that far back in History. In fact when Grant Duff wrote his famous History of Mahrattas in 1826 AD, which can be considered a modern era text, he was able to interview an actual Maratha survivor of the battle.

        A momentous historical event like a mega-battle will easily survive in the cultural memory of a people for multiple centuries. For example, Sikhs remember abundant and specific details about their various battles with Ahmad Shah Abdali, which were fought in generally the same period in history. In comparison, Rors do not remember even a single detail about the Battle, apart from the general claim of being the descendant of the soldiers of this battle. The genetic study simply validates which was obvious to keen observers.

        That aside, more such studies can help clear the fog around the origins of many such novel communities, such as Koorgis of Karnataka and Chitpawans of Konkan, which have all claimed fancy foreign origins.

  5. I realized it only after I had a second look at the authors’ list for the paper, that its second author is Anurag Kadian, a close personal friend of mine.

    I have spent years discussing this topic threadbare with him. He collaborated with Toomas Kivisild in Cam, while doing his MBA at Judge… If he’s reading this blog: nice work Kaddu!

    1. Thanks for pointing that out! Name (and nickname) rang a bell, so I checked him out, and we were contemporaries back in college (not the same class though.) I wouldn’t have expected an engineering grad to write a genetics paper, but I guess it exhibits his versatility.

      Small world.

      1. Goodness me! Kaddu was with me at Kgp and then later my PhD coincided with his MBA at Judge.

        If by “college” you mean IIT as opposed to rimco, it seems we are contemporaries too 🙂 Which hall of residence?

        PS: Kaddu is a Renaissance man, if ever there was one. Ranked #1 in NDA (terrific OLQs), Grasim Mr India finalist, and could produce ultey chhakkey (his expression for a GPA of 9.0 or above) seemingly at will. He is an old and dear friend.

        1. Yep, Kgp Class of 2001, LLR Hall. I was one year senior to him. What class (and hall) were you in?

          I have no doubt we (and Kaddu) have Facebook friends in common. 🙂 And now that my memory has refreshed a bit more, I do recall him as having serious academic prowess.

          1. I’m ’03 / RP.

            Since you were at LLR that explains how you knew Kaddu…. 🙂

            (Since you were at LLR I presume you know Appu and Khokhar too?)

          2. So looks like your batchmate is being published in science journals, and you are being published in a blog haunted by ne’er-do-wells and crank historians 🙂

          3. I’m probably both!

            Slapstik seems to have done pretty well out of life; banking, physics, family, politics and linguistics..

            Can’t ask for much more than that!

          4. @snake charmer

            I never had terribly high expectations of myself mate 🙂

            You remind me of random mohalley waley uncle-ji ?Bachchey dekho Verma ji ka ladka kahaN pahunch gya aur tum abhi bhi yahaN gappeiN maar rahey ho…

  6. Are Scythians from sistan and Baloch province Iran?

    Are they the same as the sakas that sent a large army to fight in the Mahabharata war? They fought under the leadership of kamboja king sudakshina–king of Turin.

    1. I think we are looking at the Kauravas and Pandavas here rather than any participating hordes such as the Kambojas or Sakas

      I may be wrong but that’s what I think

      1. Kamboja and the Salas fought for the Kauravas in the 18 day kurukshetra war. They played an important role.

        1. I’m not denying the role played by any supporting groups in the war itself but rather basing my view on the archaeological evidence reported on the subject population till date.

          The two reports of the ASI that relate excavated ancient forts to the Rors are the 1871 report from the Agra circle and 2004-05 report from the Baghpat area (very close to historical Hastinapur and pretty much a part of the ancient Kuru region).

          The other thing I mentioned about professor Luders’ work that shows a migration from Indus valley to Tarim Basin also ties in with historical Uttar Kuru (North Kuru)

          1. Very interesting Anurag. You are bright.

            The Mahabharata is a dramatized and exaggerated telling of historic events, a type of historical fiction if you will, albeit I believe with a lot of actual history embedded. It only relates to a few currents at one time in history. 99.99% of history is not directly covered. [Including everything before and after the story of the great Bharata–Shantanu to the passing of Krishna.]

            Therefore the Mahabharata does not tell us about many important aspects of history.

            “The two reports of the ASI that relate excavated ancient forts to the Rors are the 1871 report from the Agra circle and 2004-05 report from the Baghpat area (very close to historical Hastinapur and pretty much a part of the ancient Kuru region).”

            I am not certain that this was the actual site of the ancient Kurukshetra battle. There were many great wars and battles fought near Kurkshetra (both before, during and after the Mahabharata)

            This said, I look forward to learning what archeologists and scientists find with great interest.

            The other thing I mentioned about professor Luders’ work that shows a migration from Indus valley to Tarim Basin also ties in with historical Uttar Kuru (North Kuru)

            Tried to summarize an infinitesimally small portion of the narrative stories about Uttara Kuru here:


            Where do you think Mt Soma was? Siberia? Europe?

  7. the huns (from the baltic region) invaded many parts of the world, including india.
    As most invaders they bred with the local females

    1. Sara, do you think the Hun became Arya and twice born after coming to Arya Varsha? What “Gotra” were they given? It appears that many immigrant groups became incorporated into the Arya system. Many were also incorporated into twice born systems.

  8. Hi AnAn,

    I agree with the identification of Mount Mujavat, from where came the best Soma, with Muztagh Ata. The reason being it more or less supports my idea of Proto-Aryas having migrated from Indus Valley (Roruka) to the Tarim Basin area.

    Loulan (Roran) has been known to have yielded a lot of Vedic texts and related materials in past explorations apart from the famous mummies.

    The location of Muztagh Ata at the northern side of the Tibetan plateau pretty much makes it easily accessible via a route running from the Sindhu-Saraswati area to East Turkestan. There might have been a route bifurcation that led exactly to Muztagh Ata but the basic point I’m getting at is that the broad region of Tibet and Xinjiang was well known to these people

    1. Fascinating hypotheses. I need to reflect on this.

      One point to remember is that Soma is described as far from any known places. This is not to imply that your hypothesis on Muztagh Ata is wrong.

      A question if I might?

      What do you think Tushara refers to? I don’t know for sure. But I think this might be how “EPIC” period (Ramayana to Mahabharata) SAARC referred to Xinjiang. Alternatively this could be the ancient SAARC name for China . . . but that is a larger claim since we don’t know for sure that there were large trading and information transfer routes between China and SAARC during the “EPIC” historical period.

      Wrote about the ancient Arya historic connection between Xinjiang and SAARC and Turin:

      Excuse my ignorance . . . is Xinjian part of historic Turin? When I refer to historic Turin I implicitly include Xinjiang.

      1. That’s a nice question to ask. Strictly speaking, I would personally never club Xinjiang with Turan.

        My reasons are as follows,
        1) Iranians say Turanians were originally Iranic but in Loulan, Xinjiang we found only Vedic texts and nothing related to Avesta

        2) The Tibet to Mongolia strip, including Xinjiang, historically used Indic scripts. The Tibetan script is still very Indic but Mongols now use Cyrillic; Xinjiang we know is now a part of China

        3) Then again, we know Kanishka was from Xinjiang and his coinage shows him worshipping Indo-Aryan deities. Luders’ and Stein’s works also show his people Rouzhi (Yuezhi) to be related to the Indus Valley emigrants to Loulan

        In every way, Xinjiang is more Indo-Aryan than Iranic. So, if Turanians were indeed Iranian to begin with as claimed by modern Iranians then Xinjiang simply doesn’t fit in in that framework.

        On the other hand, genetics and this discussion on East Turkestan above raise further questions about the validity of the Iranian claim on Turan in general

        1. Another excellent comment Anurag Kadian.

          Can you share your thoughts on what geographic area “Tushara” referred to?

          I have long believed that Xinjiang, Tibet, Turan, Eastern Iran, SAARC and South East Asia formed an open architecture open system Dharmic ecosystem. Dharmic in a way we would recognize today.

          What religion and culture do you think Iran had pre Zorathustra? I suspect it was Dharmic too. Many post modernists cultural marxist Indologists have suggested as much too. Implying that the Iranians worshiped the Danavas and Daityas wherass most SAARC people preferred to worship the Adityas (which large exceptions such as Kerala).

          What are your thoughts regarding this?

          The only ancient Iranian texts I have read relate to Zorastrianism. I see deep commonalities between Zorastrianism and the rest of eastern philosophy to the point I would categorize Zorastrianism as a part of eastern philosophy.

          Most Zorastrians live in India. Most of the people who pray as Zorastrian temples are Hindus. In fact Hindus in many cases would be surprised to learn that the places they worship at are not part of their own tradition.

          One of the most important and spiritually charged places in Kolkatta for Hindus (and Buddhists/Jains/Sikhs of course) is the “Agni Mandir”. Which happens to be a Zorastrian temple.

          If ancient Iran was part of the Dharmic ecosystem than the question of Iranic versus Sanskrit does not arise since Iran and SAARC would be part of a common civilization. This is my guess, but I don’t know for sure.

          [As an aside in Kolkata Taoism and Hinduism also blend well (Chinese community). Many Hindus believe that the Mahapurusha Loa Tsu–founder of Taoism–was known as “Bhoga Nather” among Hindus. Hindus regard Lao Tsu as one of the greatest spiritual masters who ever lived, along with Jesus and Buddha.]

          1. Very interesting comments and hypothesis related to the open architecture. I’d say the idea works, broadly.

            Coming to the question of Tushara, I’d say Indian texts leave me a bit befuddled. The way they drop the name in association with people like Sakas, Pahlavas, Yavanas, Bahlikas etc. I lose all sense of direction.

            The reason I say so is because Pahlavas would be in present day Iran, hopefully; Yavanas would be in present day middle east if the Arabs were not Central Asian to begin with. Bahlikas I take to be present somewhere in the Uzbek area or perhaps the border of Afghanistan and Uzbekistan.

            Now, the word Tushara on its own tends towards snow, winter, mist etc. It could be any cold country. Was it definitely Xinjiang, I can’t say. It could even be Siberia or Russia (Asian parts)

            On the other hand, with Mujavata as Muztagh Ata, Xinjiang as Uttara Kuru goes perfectly

          2. Excellent comments Anurag. You channel my own frustrations with textual clarity completely:

            Agreed about Bahlikhas. Might write article about them in the future.

            Agreed about Pahlavas being Iranian. Some Iranians claim descent from Arjuna, abhimanyu, Parakshit, Janamajeya.

            Yavanas might refer to Greek Turkic Lebanese people. Could they also refer to Milan’s wise Serbian ancestors who had a heavily vedic Sanskrit influenced culture?

            Where do you think narakashura and his son bhagadatta came from? Many Hindus insist Baghdad. I suspect Burma or Tibet are far more likely.

            I need to rethink where tushara is perhaps. It’s location always befuddled me.

    2. Anurag Uvach:

      “The location of Muztagh Ata at the northern side of the Tibetan plateau pretty much makes it easily accessible via a route running from the Sindhu-Saraswati area to East Turkestan.”

      Russian Linguist Igor Tonoyan Belayev is already on to this migration route based on Tibetan phonological and morphological similarities.


      “A brief note on the two older Indo-European words – for “earth” and “man” as compared to Tibetan – 2017″

      In his own words:

      “We propose here a very special thing. Modern mainstream researchers in Indo-European studies take more and more shots at connecting proto-Indo-European originally to North Caucasian languages even to a degree of sprachbund though the basic phological (sic) systems and morpheme structures of the two systems are completely different. On the other hand Tibeto-Burman basic phonology and reconstructed morphology is “suspiciously” similar to that reconstructed for proto-Indo-European (in many respects).”

      Mayuresh Kelkar

  9. Hi AnAn,

    Bhagadatta was from Pragajyotishpura, which is supposed to be modern day Guwahati according to many people.

    But I’m partial to your observation that he maybe from Burma, perhaps. The reason I favor your idea is that he is supposed to have attended Yudhisthira’s Rajsuya Yajna at the head of a powerful army of Yavanas and Mlechchas.

    In such a scenario, it is hard to envision him being from Guwahati, which was well within Dharmic limits and not a part of the Mleccha zone.

    So, as you said it is highly probable that he was from the Burma area and the Yavanas accompanying him might have been from the Yunnan province, which borders Burma, of present day China.

    I now suspect that many references to Yonnas etc. actually talked about people from Yunnan rather than from the west

  10. I think it is unlikely that Guwahati was Pragajyotishpura although I have heard the theories.

    Bhagadatta was the biggest “get” that both the Pandavas and Kauravas were trying to win to their side for the great war other than Krishna himself (Bhagadatta had a far more formidable army than the army that Krithavarma and the Narayanas brought to the Kauravas {at Krishna’s behest}). It was unclear which army Bhagadatta would join.

    Bhagadatta was one of the “BIG 3” of the Kaurava Army. An unstoppable nuclear weapon that could change the momentum of any battle at will. A genius (very broad measure of intelligence) without peer. And one of the most good and spiritual human beings alive. Much loved by children and retirees. Friend of Indra.

    Arjuna fought him for 7 days and nights (before the Kurukshetra war and Rajasuya yajna and without Krishna’s help) and could not overcome him.

    A basketball analogy would be freak of nature prime Shaq where the referees allowed heavy contact in the paint without calling fouls.

    Burma and Yunnan could be right. Note that Bhagadatta ruled a vast empire. Maybe not even geographically contiguous. Would you rule out Tibet? Bhagadatta and Narakasura appear in many Maha Puranas and appear to have come from beyond some enormous mountain ranges.


    Separate note, many Tirthas are described in the old texts. Many of these are probably far to the west, north, east, south and south east of modern India.

    1. Hi AnAn

      Since you’ve spent more time thinking on the Bhagadatta issue, I’d agree with you on not being able to rule out Tibet altogether. Because I actually couldn’t rule it out on thinking it over further.

      Although, Sichuan province comes up as another possible location of Pragajyotishpura. I don’t have any archeological evidence or scripture to back this up but since we are just mulling over possible solutions, I thought this could be one as well as I’m once again going off neighborhood to Yunnan province as he had a massive army of Yonnas backing him up

      On the other hand, if we consider the potential of identifying Banasura with Asur Banipal, then even the Western Asian area seems to hold at least some promise of a possible solution

      What do you think, AnAn?

      1. Sihuan province and the Yunman is growing on me although I can’t provide much evidence for this.

        “Banasura with Asur Banipal”
        Wow. No idea where Banasura was. Banasura was a Daitya and not a homo sapien. Some might say that he was another type of hominid but I don’t think so. Daityas are probably a reference to what today we would call either:
        —or a deep substrate of subtle intuition within the brain and nervous system (from which grosser thoughts arrive), or an object of subtle absorption, mystical experience, astral travel

        Because of this, it is hard for me to think about them in terms of a geographic area, although their vibrations might be stronger in some geographic areas (and I don’t want to elaborate on what this means).

        I have no idea where Banasura’s main empire was. Another lokha? Another planet/moon/solar system? Perhaps related to the brain and nervous system in a way that AI sensors can measure.

        1. But Banasura’s daughter married Aniruddha, Krishna’s grandson

          So, Banasura seems highly likely to have been a human

  11. More media coverage of the Ror story


    ““Our study, based on DNA profiling of over 200 persons in Haryana and Pakistan, reveals that Rors have strong genetic similarities with the Pathan and Kalash communities in Pakistan. The study indicates that Rors may have moved from the Swat Valley, a peripheral region of the Indus Valley region, about 1,500 years ago,” said Chaubey, senior author of the report”

    “Kadian said the Maratha theory was questioned within the community and it was important to end the confusion.”

      1. Hi Vikram,

        I don’t think the Swat valley is alluded to in any folklore of this population.

        In fact, their bards talk of a place on the Gujarat, MP, Rajasthan border as one of their earliest strongholds. I identify this place as Mahismati in Indian scriptures.

        Not to say the Pathan, Kalash affinity is to be ignored but in my opinion that works on a more ancient scale (Gandhari marrying Dhritrashtra etc.) as well as more recent case of Hindu Shahi kings of Kabul who had tried convincing Ghaznavi not to attack Thanesar

    1. Hi Snake Charmer,

      I wouldn’t deny that association. Do you have any specific questions?

      Please let me know 🙂

      1. Any idea when the Rakhigarhi DNA paper is going to be out? Perhaps the most eagerly awaited paper in the history of genetics.

        1. Frankly, I’m not even eager anymore

          Whatever rumors I’ve heard aren’t very encouraging. They say they finally managed to extract DNA from just two remains

          That would be so statistically insignificant even when it comes out

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