HistoryReddy Caste: History, Types & Surnames

Reddy Caste: History, Types & Surnames


In this article, we are going to know about Reddy Caste/Dynasty. Please read the article below to understand its history, category, details, kingdom, and many more. I hope it helps you.

Historically, India is one of the oldest countries in the world that has gone through different dynasties. People from these dynasties still live in India, which contributes to the diversity of customs and culture.

Take a quick look at the box below to understand some early information about Reddy Caste. For complete and detailed information, follow the full article.

Reddy Caste

Classification Forward caste/ Open Category
Religion Hinduism
Language Telugu Language
Country India
States Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka, Odisha, and Tamil Nadu
Region Southern India
Kingdom Reddy Kingdom

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What is reddy caste?

Reddy (also called Reddi/Reddiar/Reddappa) is a caste that belongs to India, settled in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. The origin of the Reddy caste backs to the Rashtrakutas. They have been known as the land-owning aristocracy of the village in history. 

Their community was included merchants and cultivators. Reddy caste was skillful in rulers and warriors, and it’s known in Telugu history. The Reddy dynasty ruled coastal and central Andhra from 1325 CE until 1448 CE.

People believe that the Reddy is composed of the fall of the Rashtrakutas dynasty and the rise of the Kalyani Chalukyas in 900 CE. Kalyani Chalukyas used the soldiers of Rashtrakutas as village chieftains and named them “Reddis.” 

While the Kalyani was still in power, the Reddis gained power, controlled all the villages, and gained sufficient control over the area. This event can be called the beginning of the Reddy dynasty.

In the 12th century, the Kalatya dynasty was founded by Prola, who used the name “Reddy” in all his inscriptions. Kalatiya appointed Reddy chieftains as generals and soldiers in its army, so Reddy chieftains formed a large part of Kakatiya’s army.

As we said above, the Reddy chieftains were masters in warriors and rulers, so they created their feudatories and appeared as solid chieftains of their kind. Although the Reddy chieftains had good power and rule in their areas, they still paid homage to the Kakatia emperors.

Reddy chieftains had enough control over the army; they had their tribes and feudal lords, making them very strong in the struggle. Reddy chieftains also acted as the front line of defense against the Muslim invasions.

On the eve of the fall of Kakatia, many Reddy commanders announced their readiness and separated with the formation of a kingdom. Prolaya Vema Reddy was the first king of the Reddy dynasty; he established the capital of his kingdom at Addanki (now in the Prakasam district). Reddy dynasty was ruling all-around coastal Andhra, Rayalaseema region, at the peak of its period. Major Gaurav Chaudhary: Wiki, Biography, Age

For improving their glory, Reddy created several forts at Kondavidu, Kondapalli, and decided to shift the capital of credit to Rajamahendravaram (now Rajamundry).

Like all dynasties of history, after the peak, the fall will come ahead. In a warrior, the Reddy dynasty lost the war to the Gajapatis of Orissa. It became part of the Vijayanagar empire later. Reddy and Vijayanagar rules always had competition for power, but later, they joined together against the Bahmani Sultans.

Reddys treated Vijayanagar the same way they treated Kakatia. They were paying tribute to the Vijayanagar emperor, paying attention to their private armies, and helping the Vijayanagar army.

Reddys ruled the entire swathes of territory under the “Poligars” title, which cause control over the Seema region. When the Reddy Poligars were still with Vijayanagar kingdom, they tried to improve Reddy’s army, collected taxes, and spend them on the treasury.

Reddy Poligars was strong enough, so when the Vijayanagar fell, they became independent again. However, Reddys started to fight among themselves. In this way, several battles got happened in the Seema region.

In Telangana, Reddys were under the control of the Qutub Shah rulers of Golkonda and then were vassals under the Nizams. Reddys was too bright in their work. During these periods, they were acting under the effect of other empires; they were aligned with the leading rulers but still focused on their power. They dominated all around in the state of Andhra because Reddys were also ruled over coastal Andhra.

Reddys were financially in suitable condition and also had the power to fight and win. As a result, they became independent and formed Andhra Pradesh. T.Nagi Reddy, S.Sudhakar Reddy, and B.Narasimha Reddy were three leaders too crucial for the Reddy caste.

Reddys are making up 6.5% of Andhra’s population, was living in different regions, and owning a big part of the land. Reddy caste was ruling firmly for many years and is known as the most powerful caste in Andhra.

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Reddy Caste types

It is estimated that there are more than 50 types of Reddy caste. “Odlalo unnanni rakalu redlalo kalavu,” what you read, was an old cliche that says that there are as many different types of Reddy caste as there are many kinds in rice.

We listed you some of these types to be familiar with them:

  1. Ayodhi Reddys (in Tamil Nadu)
  2. Motali Reddys ( Rulers like Wanaparthy and Gopalpet was under this type)
  3. Neravati Reddy
  4. Pedakanti Reddy ( Rulers like Gadwal, Domakonda, Papannapeta, Atmakur-Amarchinta, and Boravelli was under this type)
  5. Chawdary Reddy (Saudary Reddy)
  6. Gudati Reddy
  7. Reddy Gandla (Ganali in Maharashtra)
  8. Pakanati Reddys
  9. Velanati Reddys
  10. Namadurlu
  11. Vadde Reddys
  12. Panta Reddys
  13. Gandla Reddys
  14. Ganjam Reddy (In Tamil Nadu, Kerala, and Orissa)
  15. Pokanati Reddys
  16. Nanugonda Reddys
  17. Gone Kapu
  18. Palle Reddy
  19. Konda Reddy
  20. Bhumanchi Reddy

Gudati, Gone Kapu, and Reddy Kapu sub-castes ruled in Hyderabad and Rangareddy. Reddy Gandla, Gudati, and Motati were living in Adilabad and Karimnagar. Gduto Reddy, Motati Reddy, and Gandla Reddy’s occupations were based on oil and beedi leaves.

Reddys are varying in some of their culture and customs. 

To illustrate it, Pedakanti Reddy women don’t use talibottu in their outfits; however, Kapu Reddy women wear saree along with a belt and wear this belt in the middle.


Reddy Caste surnames

Reddy or Riddy surname is originated in India. This surname, used mainly by members of Telugu. Two communities of Karnataka, Reddi Lingayat and Reddy Vokkaliga, used to use Reddy surnames, too.

Reddy caste exists in the South of India. Many of them live in Andhra Pradesh, and some others live in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. In their area, Reddys are known for their excellent power in managing and administration; apart from this, they are also experts in farming.

Historically, the Reddy caste was ruled all around coastal Andhra Pradesh during the 13th and 14th centuries. Here below, some of the well-known Reddy surname owners are listed:

  • Neelam Sanjiva Reddy, President of India, Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Speaker of Lok Sabha
  • Yogi Vemana, Telugu poet
  • Kallam Anji Reddy, Founder, chairman of Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories
  • Prolaya Vema Reddy, King of Reddy dynasty
  • Y.S Rajasekhara Reddy, Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh
  • B. Satya Narayan Reddy, Governor of Odisha, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh
  • Arutla Ramchandra Reddy, Indian freedom fighter and Telangana movement leader
  • Harishankar Reddy, Indian cricketer
  • Keshava Reddy, Telugu novelist
  • Apsara Reddy, journalist

Reddy caste surname is 670th most common surnames in the world. In addition to India, other nations also own Reddy caste surnames such as South Africa, United States, United Arab Emirates, Mozambique, Fiji, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, England, Kanada, etc.

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Reddy Caste in Tamil Nadu

There are 14 sub-castes further separated into 30 sub-castes in Tamil Nadu. These sub-castes are Ganjam, Konda Kappu, Konda Reddy, Ayodhi Reddy, and Thesur Reddy.

Apart from these sub-castes, Panta Reddy, Kajalavaru, Balijavaru, Bongu Reddys, Ponkalai Nattu Reddys, and Elanattu Reddys are some other sub-castes that exist in Tamil Nadu.

Ganjam Reddy is classified as BC (background communities) and Konda Reddy as Scheduled Tribes.


Reddy Caste OC or BC?

Reddys gained lots of power by acting under the Rashtrakutas, Kalyani Chalukyas, and Kalatiyas. Also, one of the Kakatiya’s Kings named Prola has been chosen Reddi as a title.

OBC (Other Backward Castes/Classes) reservation is given to financially backward people in the last 100 years. So, Telugu Reddys in Karnataka are OBC which is called 3A in Karnataka. However, Reddys in Telugu, Andhra, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Odisha, and Chattighar belong to General Category/Caste.

Note: A few people claim that Reddys belong to OC (Open Category).


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