Redirected from Hindu NamesIndian or Hindu names are used in India. Not all Indians are Hindu; see Arabic names and Iranian names for additional sources of names used by Indian Muslims. Sikh names are discussed below.
Hindu given names tend to be from Sanskrit, the ancient Indo-European language of India. The sacred texts of Hinduism are an important source, providing, for example, Krishna, Ajit, Shiva and Indra for males, and Lakshmi and Sita for females. Sanskrit vocabulary words are also used as names, such as Gita "song" and Anand "happiness".
Sikh names also tend to derive from Sanskrit, though in most cases they are distinct from Hindu names. They are often dithematic, containing two elements. First elements like har, bal and man are combined with second elements like inder, deep and pal to create names such as Harinder and Mandeep.
Most Sikh men have a surname of Singh (meaning "lion"), while most women have a surname of Kaur (meaning "princess"). This was instituted by the guru Gobind Singh (1666-1708), who wished to diminish the power of the caste system. In some cases Singh or Kaur is the middle name, and it is followed by a family name.