A "pargana" is a former administrative unit of the
Indian subcontinent, used primarily, but not exclusively, by the Muslim kingdoms.
"Parganas" were introduced by the
Delhi Sultanate, and the word is of Persian origin. As a revenue unit, a pargana consists of several "mouzas", which are the smallest revenue units, consisting of one or more villages and the surrounding countryside. Under the reign of Sher Shah Suri, administration of parganas was strengthened by the addition of other officers, including a "shiqdar" (police chief), an "amin" or "munsif" (a civil arbitrator and revenue official who assessed and collected revenue) and a "karkun" (record keeper).
The Mughal emperor
Akbarorganized the empire into " sarkars", roughly the equivalent of districts, and "sarkars" were organized into " subahs", or provinces. In the Mughal system, "parganas" served as the local administrative units of a "sarkar". The chief administrator of a "pargana" was a "parganait" or "parganadar"; other "pargana" officials were the "shiqdar" (magistrate), "amil" (assessor and collector of revenue), "bitikchi" (chief accountant and registrar), "qanungo" (keeper of revenue records), and the "fotahdar" or "khazinadhar" (treasurer). Individual parganas observed common customs regarding land rights and responsibilities, which were known as the "pargana dastur", and each pargana had its own customs regarding rent, fees, wages, and weights and measures, known as the "pargana nirikh".
As the British expanded into former Mughal provinces, starting with
Bengal, they at first retained the "pargana" administration, but, under the Governorship of Charles Cornwallis, enacted the Permanent Settlementof 1793, which abolished the "pargana" system in favor of the " zamindari" system, in which "zamindars" were made the absolute owners of rural lands, and abolished the "pargana dastur" and "pargana nirikh". British administration consisted of districts, which were divided into tehsils or taluks. "Parganas" remained important as a geographical term, persisting in land surveys, village identification, court decrees, etc.
The "pargana" system persisted in several
princely states, including Tonk and Gwalior. Parganas disappeared almost completely after the independence of Indiaand Pakistanin 1947, although the term lives on in place names, like the districts of North 24 Parganasand South 24 Parganasin India's West Bengalstate.
* Hunter, William Wilson, Sir, et al (1908). "Imperial Gazetteer of India", Volume 12. 1908-1931; Clarendon Press, Oxford.
* Markovits, Claude (ed.) (2004). "A History of Modern India: 1480-1950". Anthem Press, London.
* [http://banglapedia.search.com.bd/HT/P_0091.htm "Pargana" article on Banglapedia]
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Pargana — In the Delhi sultanate, a unit of 100 villages corresponded to a pargana headed by a chaudhuri. The term pargana is possibly the same as pratijagaranaka, used for a territorial unit in Paramara inscriptions. See also Sarkar … Historical dictionary of Medieval India
pargana — n. (also pergunnah, pergana) (in India) a group of villages or a subdivision of a district. Etymology: Urdu pargana district * * * pargana, ganna variants of pergunnah … Useful english dictionary
pargana — [pə gʌnə] noun a group of villages or a subdivision of a district in India. Origin Urdu, lit. district … English new terms dictionary
pargana — par·ga·na … English syllables
Santhal Pargana — Admin ASC 2 Code Orig. name Santhāl Pargana Country and Admin Code IN.38.1257331 IN … World countries Adminstrative division ASC I-II
pergunnah var. of PARGANA. — perhaps adv. 1 it may be; possibly (perhaps it is lost). 2 introducing a polite request (perhaps you would open the window?). Etymology: PER + HAP … Useful english dictionary
Gonda district — is one of the districts of Uttar Pradesh, India, and Gonda town is the district headquarters. It is also headquarters of the Devipatan Division. The district lies between 26º 47 and 27º 20 north latitude and 81º 30 and 82º 46 east longitude The… … Wikipedia
Amethi — Infobox Indian Jurisdiction native name = Amethi | type = city | latd = 26.15 | longd = 81.82 locator position = right | state name = Uttar Pradesh district = Sultanpur leader title = leader name = altitude = 100 population as of = 2001… … Wikipedia
Dumka — This article is about the municipality in India. For its namesake district, see Dumka district. For the Slavic musical form, see Dumka (musical form). Dumka city … Wikipedia
Deoghar district — This article is about the district. For its eponymous headquarters, see Deoghar. Deoghar district देवघर जिला Location of Deoghar district in Jharkhand … Wikipedia