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Re: Re: Re: Saini Caste of Punjab
Sainis differentiated from Malis (neo-Sainis)
Mali caste , in southern districts of Haryana and beyond in the states of UP , MP, and Rajasthan, also started using the surname "Saini" in 20th century. However, this is not the same community as Yaduvanshi Sainis of Punjab This is testified by the fact that census of 1881  does not acknowledge of the existence of Saini community outside Punjab and, despite the insinuations of colonial writers like Ibbetson, records Sainis and Malis as separate communities. Sainis of Punjab historically have never inter-married with the Mali community, or with any community other than Sainis for that matter, and this taboo prevails even today generally. Apart from border districts of Haryana with neighboring UP , Delhi and Rajasthan, there have been little to no cultural or social exchange between Sainis and Malis, as both communities have distinct cultures and histories.
The Sainis of Hoshiarpur, Jalandhar, Ropar and Gurdaspur districts , especially the aristocratic families among them, had historically intermarried only within these districts until recently. Haryanvi speaking Sainis of Haryana generally intermarry within Rohtak, Karnal and Kurukshetra districts only, though it is possible that some poor and less aware Saini families in the border districts of Haryana may have socially bonded with the Mali community in the southern border district of Haryana, neighbouring Rajasthan, Delhi, and UP, a little stronger, and due to the adoption of "Saini" surname by Mali community south of Yamuna in 20th century both may have become further confused with each other.
Owing also to this particular confusion, most Saini families in Punjab prefer to intermarry only within certain districts of Punjab and those of Haryana contiguous to Punjab. Sikh Sainis are even more unlikely to intermarry outside these handful of districts.
Differences acknowledged in the colonial accounts
Differences as per Denzil Ibbetson`s account
Even colonial census authorities, somewhat eager to club Sainis with Malis for the sake of getting easier handle on complex Saini history and ethnography, were forced to acknowledge this stark fact with the remark: "...that some of the higher tribes of the same class (Sainis) will not marry with them (Malis)  .
The mistake colonial ethnographers seem to have made was to confuse occupational communities with ethnic communities. The engagement of Sainis in horticulture, in addition to wheat and rice farming, gave the 19th century colonial administrators , yet untrained in subcontinent`s historical texts and scientific approach to social anthropology, the impression that Sainis were probably related with the Mali community in some way. But it does not appear that the colonial rulers were themselves entirely convinced with this conjecture  as well because all of their accounts fall short of emphatically identifying Sainis as Malis. Instead the colonial accounts used diffuse and open-ended phraseology like "it would appear", "probably", etc wherever they attempted to hyphenate Sainis with Malis. But despite this ambivalence the colonial accounts do not fail to record that unlike Malis:
Differences as per Edward Balfour`s account
In 1885 Edward Balfour, another colonial scholar, clearly identified Sainis as distinct from Malis.  What is more interesting is that Edward Balfour found Sainis to be largely involved with sugar-cane farming instead of vegetable farming while only Malis to be involved with gardening. Edward Balfour`s account thus gives further confirmation, in addition to self-contradiction implied in Ibbetson`s account, that Sainis were understood to be entirely different from Malis in the colonial times.
Differences acknowledged by post-colonial scholars
In Punjab there is no confusion whatsoever about the difference between Mali and Saini community and Sainis are nowhere confused with the Mali community. But in Haryana, a lot of Mali tribes have now adopted `Saini` last name which has made the Saini identity somewhat confused in the state and southwards of it. Marking out the clear difference between Malis and Sainis of Haryana, an Anthroplogical Survey of India report published in 1994 states the following :