The Meta Qureshi is a notable Muslim community discovered in the state of Gujarat in India and a province of Sindh ‘in the state of Pakistan. They are believed to be one of a number of communities of pastoral nomads found in the Banni region of Kutch. The community is also known as simply Qureshi.
Background of Meta Qureshi
The community traces its descent from a small number of Qureshi Arabs who arrived in the region of Kutch during the 13th Century. They got the name mate, which means cattle owner, when they took up the occupation of cattle breeding. Being Maldhari nomads, they are now distinct from other Gujarati Shaikh groups, who are either town dwellers or settled agriculturists. They have several clans, the main ones are the Bijani, Thariyani, Mosani, Nakiyanbi, Jindani, Baioani, Saliyani, Ladhani and Paryani. All these clans have equal status and intermarry. They are an endogamous community, only marrying other Maldhari Muslim communities, such as the Mutwa.
The Meta Qureshi are a community of Maldhari cattle breeders. They take their cattle to bazaars of Bhuj. In addition to cattle rearing, they also raise goats and buffaloes. Such as other Kutchi communities, several of them have migrated to other parts of India in search of employment. They are Sunni Muslims and most follow the Barelvi tradition. Like other Maldhari communities, they speak Kutchi with several Sindhi loanwords.