In South Asia, Mughal and Turk are both interchangeable and sometimes used to identify the same ethnic Persian Turko-Mongol people.
In referring to the Mughal recruits into the British Imperial Army regiment, J.M. Wikely advised;
...there is little difference between the Túrk and Moghal. The word 'Moghal' even where it is used in an ethnic sense, is frequently misapplied, so as to comprise of many tribes of real Túrki race...The best known clans are - The Barlás, Chagatta and Kiáni|30px|30px|J.M. Wikley, Major of the British Imperial Army of India, Punjab Musalmans Regiment
The first British colonial census of Punjab returned 3,861 Mughal Kayanis of the Rawalpindi district.
Denzil Ibbetson further elaborates;
Others say that the Mughals proper, and especially the Chughattas and Qizilbashes are Kayanis|30px|30px|
Mughal Kayanis - A well-known Janjua chief of Ratala tehsil Gujar Khan, Mirza Atta Mohammad Khan was known by the title of Mirza (Persian title of Prince of the blood) and was a renowned tribal chief of Ratala during the early to mid 20th century. His great grandfather Raja Abdullah Khan (descendant of Malik Darwesh Khan), being displaced by the upheaval of the Sikh conquest of Garjaak and Darapur took his remaining army and conquered the region of Ratyal from a Ratyal chief who was loyal to the Sikh empire. His domain was over seven large villages consisting of Mughal Kayanis, Jatts and Gakhars. He defeated the Ratyal Chief and renamed it Ratala.
In view of the above, the existence of a tribe identified and acknowledged as Mughal Kayani is clear.
The Malik Kayani kings established a renowned rule as well actively encouraged architecture of amenities for their cities;
"Even now the skeletons of towns and cities dotting the Helmund valley at intervals along its lower reaches attest to the greatness and riches of that Kaiani kingdom which was swept away by the ruthless hand of Nadir Shah...."|30px|30px|Indian Borderland by T.Hungerford Holdich
Interestingly, the Jamshidi tribe of Northern Afghanistan also claims Kayani descent and is counted as one of the four most important tribes of Northern Afghanistan, or the Char Aimak. They are ethnically very closed linked to the neighbouring Turkmen tribe with whom they share their greatest marital links. Forts remnant of their past, namely the most famous one being the Fort Kaurmach or Guchmach, known locally as the Jamshidi Fort.
Gakhars also claim Kayani origin.
The Rawalpindi Gazetteer of 1904 records their existence as a Mughal tribe resident in Rawalpindi.