The term Saraswat has been synonymous with the title 'Brahmin'. Goddess Saraswati is the tutelary mother of Saraswats, Lord Brahma being their tutelary father. Saraswats are Brahmins by virtue of which they are intellectuals. The roots of Saraswat Brahmins go up to times of Bhrugu Rushi, the great Sage of Aryans and father of Chyawan Rushi, Dwaadash Rushi Bhargava and Shukra Rushi. Dadhichee was a youngest son of Chyawan Rushi. The two other sons were Aprwaan Rushi and Pramati Rushi. Dadhichee son was Saraswat Rishi. Saraswat Rishi was the first ancestor of the Saraswat Brahmins.

Aprwaan > Ourwa > Ruchik > Jamadagni are branches of the tree, that began from Bhrugu Rishi.

Bhargava Parashuram was the fifth son of Jamadagni Rushi (other four being Rumnnwaan, Sushenn, Vasu and Vishwaavasu). This family tree explains the reason, as why Bhargava Parashuram chose only the Saraswat Brahmins and brought them to the reclaimed land of then Konkan-Goa.

H. A. Rose, on his "A Glossary of the Tribes and Castes of the Punjab and North-West Frontier Province" has summarized the variety of families and tribes of Vedic origin at the time. The Jaitly, or Jetley family is one of the five families that constitute the "Panjzati." The late 19th Century book by Jogendra N. Bhattacharya, "Hindu Castes and Sects" also gives the historical details of this Brahmin family.The "Panjatias" are the highest order of Brahmins in the Punjab. The other families being: Mohle, Jhingan, Trikha and Kumaria. The "Panjzati" were also known as the purohits (chief Brahmins and royal courtiers) of the Dhaighar Khatris and have had very close relations with the Khatris of the Punjab for many millennia. Rose points out the story of Parashurama destroying the Kshatriyas of the world, when a pregnant woman of the caste took refuge with a Saraswat. When the child was born, the Saraswat invested the knowledge of the Vedas in him. The boy married 18 Kshatriya girls and his sons took the names of the various rishis and founded the lineage of the Khatris. It was this that led to the foundation, supposedly, of the Sarawats being the purohits of the ancient Khatris.

© Dr S M Tadkodkar