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Jat/Tarkhan Relations ?

DushtHarami

SPNer
Jan 14, 2013
3
2
Hello,
Would someone be kind enough to briefly explain the relations between these two groups? Also, are there certain last names that can be either Jat or Tarkhan?

I am adamantly opposed to this caste nonsense but something has come up and I need information on this subject.

Thank you and God Bless!
 

spnadmin

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DushtHarami ji

I can tell from your comment that you are probably running into some whisper of controversy surrounding Jats and Tarkhans.

This issue is not easy to describe, or at least for me to understand. In essence, there has been historical tension between the 2 groups. Depending on your source you will read and hear very different, even clashing reasons. There are many debates on Internet sites that go absolutely nowhere.

Rather than give an answer (not that I cannot, just that I will not) I suggest that you do some research. Not a lot is necessary. But then you will be able to see that the situation is not clear-cut. Especially as pertains to the actual caste or varna of the Tarkhans. The exact varna for the Tarkhans has a complex history, and their varna actually differs according to where in India Tarkhans are found. Not all are Sikh.

Best thing to do is use Google, and use the search term "Jats and Tarkhans" after which do some further follow-up. I have started this for you. Here are the results from a first shot at finding Google links. Wishing you luck! Our members will surely also have some answers for you.

https://www.google.com/webhp?source=search_app#hl=en&sugexp=les;&gs_rn=1&gs_ri=hp&gs_mss=Jats and T&tok=NAMEVq4Rd9TRcnthVoS6GQ&cp=13&gs_id=23&xhr=t&q=Jats and Tarkhans&pf=p&tbo=d&output=search&sclient=psy-ab&oq=Jats+and+Tark&gs_l=&pbx=1&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_cp.r_qf.&bvm=bv.1357700187,d.dmQ&fp=70f902665fe3d8c&biw=870&bih=464&bs=1
 

Gyani Jarnail Singh

Sawa lakh se EK larraoan
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Simply put..Jatts are FARMERS..land tillers...and Tarkhans are Carpenters...wood workers..
Not all who claim to be JATT (myself included) have an inch of land to till....and not all tarkhans have a wood the size of a pencil...a Trakhan may be an accountant..a librarian..a lawyer..one was the Indian President (Gyani Zail singh )...and so may be a Jatt...an accountant..a pharmacist..a doctor a teacher..a pilot..an engineer ( My four kids are those type of jatts - Electrical engineers, IT engineers, Mechanical engineers and several of my relatives are doctors etc..and we are all JATT !!..and we have tiny Gardens in our Houses..so no tilling..just paying a gardener to cut the grass)

And By the way..the GURU..SGGS advises us that its NOT what you do (supposedly) or what you EAT..or what you WEAR...that counts..its WHAT YOU DO..your ACTIONS that matter !! Actions that lead to daya compassion..Dharam..pyaar..love..humanity..love of nature..animals..trees..kindness..contentment..sabar santokh..no anger no lobh no greed..no hostility..etc etc..ALL THOSE COUNT a lot !!....BOTTOM LINE !!japposatnamwaheguru:
 

DushtHarami

SPNer
Jan 14, 2013
3
2
Thank you both for your comments.

As a followup, so if a family comes from a history of farming but they have a Tarkhan last name, would that make them Jatt or Tarkhan?

Thank you again.
 

spnadmin

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It really is impossible to tell based on this much information. Although much of the time clan names are a clue to the "caste" there is much overlapping of names. Although Jats typically were farmers, and Tarkhans historically were craftsmen, some Tarkhans also farmed, particularly in the earliest eras of their history in India. If you can share, could you tell us whether the family itself considers itself Jat or Tarkan, and why?

Here is a Tarkhan list of surnames https://sites.google.com/site/surnamesslist/tarkhans

Here is a Jat list of surnames https://sites.google.com/site/surnamesslist/surnamesinjatts

There are examples of overlap, and this is true for all caste/gotra groupings. So neither name nor traditional family occupation will be foolproof, a 1000 percent litmus test.

The Tarkhan picture becomes more complicated when a family that considers itself Tarkhan is also Ramgarhia. Ramgarhia is not a caste but a misl, and after the dissolution of the raj and the 2 World Wars, Ramgarhia went to Africa where many became farmers. Later some left Africa, and migrated to England and Canada, where they then entered professional occupations, and were neither farmers nor craftsmen.

Sorry, it seems there is no clearcut answer.
 

DushtHarami

SPNer
Jan 14, 2013
3
2
It really is impossible to tell based on this much information. Although much of the time clan names are a clue to the "caste" there is much overlapping of names. Although Jats typically were farmers, and Tarkhans historically were craftsmen, some Tarkhans also farmed, particularly in the earliest eras of their history in India. If you can share, could you tell us whether the family itself considers itself Jat or Tarkan, and why?

Here is a Tarkhan list of surnames https://sites.google.com/site/surnamesslist/tarkhans

Here is a Jat list of surnames https://sites.google.com/site/surnamesslist/surnamesinjatts

There are examples of overlap, and this is true for all caste/gotra groupings. So neither name nor traditional family occupation will be foolproof, a 1000 percent litmus test.

The Tarkhan picture becomes more complicated when a family that considers itself Tarkhan is also Ramgarhia. Ramgarhia is not a caste but a misl, and after the dissolution of the raj and the 2 World Wars, Ramgarhia went to Africa where many became farmers. Later some left Africa, and migrated to England and Canada, where they then entered professional occupations, and were neither farmers nor craftsmen.

Sorry, it seems there is no clearcut answer.
Thank you for your informative response.

The family with 100% conviction considers itself Jat and has a long farming tradition. What's more they are all married to other Jats and wouldn't even consider marrying another caste. It is said they "behave" like Jatts, whatever that means.

The only 'Tarkhan' thing about them is their last name which is considered both Jatt and Tarkhan but mostly Tarkhan.
 

spnadmin

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There is your answer then. They have a farming tradition in the family, think of themselves as Jats, ans their name can be either Tarkhan or Jat. I would go with Jat and let the question be.
 

Dalvinder Singh Grewal

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Jan 3, 2010
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I will request you not to give space to such material which goes against the tenets of Sikhism. It is long since the Sikh has crossed these boundaries and merged as one; however a few cases always exist who want to escalate the past for their present benefit. I only can say that I have found Jatt and Tarkhan of yesteryears were much more closest friends than even their brothers often; we knew no difference among ourselves. Now Jatts and Tarkhans are the things of the past. They both are service communities as none of them has much of their own to develop upon.
 

spnadmin

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Davinder ji

All your words are correct. However, we have many threads on this subject and the questions keep coming.

Just yesterday an older discussion was revived.

http://www.sikhphilosophy.net/hard-talk/8550-how-many-sikhs-have-married-out.html

On every thread like that one or more people make it clear that caste is not a part of Sikhism. But we cannot ignore that culture continues its practice, as wrong as it is.

Many young people, who have no control over the family into which they were born, do have questions about caste. This forum is a place where kids caught in a conflict at home over caste can find documented information instead of Internet rumors and exaggerations. At home they may be greeted with an atmosphere of silence in spite of much tension among family members. By saying, There is No Caste in Sikhi, does not clear up the situation at home.

Knowing more about caste also causes one to understand history and current conflicts in Sikh communities. Knowing about Ramgarhia conflicts with others in England for example triggered my own study of misls, castes and blatant misunderstanding of who Ramgarhia are and what their contributions have been across the globe..

These questions will not go away by not talking. To say nothing accomplishes nothing. It is totally against Sikhism. We should not ignore these issues. The same can be said for many other things. If we never published threads about honor killing of women, that would also be ignoring what is true. Each person has to come to his and her own way of putting an end to caste in life. So better to learn and not to judge.
 
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spnadmin

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Sikhi is about simple living, give up what you don't really need. And if you still need a 'caste' Guru Sahib has blessed us with humanity.
I am so happy that Kanwlajit Singh ji has brought this aspect of the issue up. When anyone digs deep into the history of caste and caste/clan names in not only Sikh history, but in the history of Punjab, the picture is extremely complex. How castes were formed, whether or not a particular caste was Khastriya or Jat or something else, whether two castes were actually the same caste and then split up, whether the Muslim overlords encouraged the creation of a new caste in spite of the fact that Islam rejects caste, whether Khatris are a separate caste or a subdivision of the Jatt caste, whether Khatris and Khastratiya are the same thing or not the same thing, and on and on and on. I am not exaggerating. There is a great essay about this troublesome evolution of a depressing idea. All of these developments were ongoing before the times of Guru Nanak. He had to have been aware of it. And I picture him sizing the situation up and saying, "This entire issue is a hoax, designed to confuse, divide and demoralize the human soul. Let us put an end to it now!" Some paid attention, and others did not. Thanks Kanwaljit Singh ji. The notion of caste was from the beginning a tool to keep some people on top and others on the bottom.
 

Gyani Jarnail Singh

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not only was caste...a ... TOOL TO KEEP PEOPLE IN subjugation...THE numerous subdivisions are simply becasue the Clever BRAHMIN KEPT ALL OPTIONS OPEN for HIMSELF...thus while a Jatt may only marry a Jatt for example..a BRAHMIN could marry anyone..and the UNION would create a NEW SUB-DIVISION !! all perfectly legal and A-OK !!
Thus a Brahmin could marry a SHUDRA WOMAN if she was pretty enough to excite him...and the progeny would be Brahmin+Shudra=new sub caste !! THIS is how the hundred thousand sub castes came about...

A(brahmin) + B (shudra) = C (Brahminshudra)...Next sub...C (Brahminshudra) + Brahmin= D....next sub division..A+D=E...C+D=F...etc etc etc etc...just imagine the permutations...

Then the others also began to intermarry...and more permutations emerged (illegally because ONLy the Brahmin had the power of LEGITIMACY)..ha ha but who cares..???

Back HOME in PUNJAB...the Caste is very clear...a Shudra is known to everyone...BUT when the Shudra and his Jatt neighbour BOTH MIGRATE (illegally ) to ..say the UK/Canada etc etc..and BOTH work at BRICKLAYING..and earn the SAME POUNDS...and when BOTH RETURN to PUNJAB VILLAGE...now the tables are turned..the Poor shudra is as RICH as the JATT..economic power !!!makes for TROUBLES..as have been reported in caste based clashes at GURDWARAS....etc etc..dera ballan murder in vienna etc etc...

2. Second change that now emerges..in CANADA..everyone is not only EQUAL..everyone is UNKNOWN...so we get people who are Low caste in Punjab..calling themsleves GILL DHILLON etc..and pretending to be jatts....but IF ever asked their NATIVE VILLAGE..the cat is out of the BAG !!! This FAKE "high Castes" are also a new emergence...and movements are afoot to make the Low castes PROUD of their low caste..thats why we get songs like PUTT CHAMARAAN DE to EQUAL the traditional Putt jattan sardaran de...but its NOT working..INFERIORITY COMPLEXES take generations to go away...so the FAKE GILLS grow....

IF we all follow the SGGS faithfully a nd IN SPIRIT..as well as LETTER..these problems will die a natural death...
 

Kanwaljit.Singh

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Jan 29, 2011
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How castes were formed, whether or not a particular caste was Khastriya or Jat or something else, whether two castes were actually the same caste and then split up
There was a similar thread on Quora, do back end developers think less of the front end developers? Do non-PhD's face bad treatment from PhD's in a company?

People think they are A and the type B are bad for them. No one makes a ruckus when another person of type A deceives them. We make labels and divide people, failing to see oneness of existence. Diamond is pure and perfect, because it is one big piece.

Whether the Muslim overlords encouraged the creation of a new caste in spite of the fact that Islam rejects caste
Hmm I thought most people took up names like Khan, Ali, Muhammad. Keeping it very traditional.

Poor sikhs, they have the unique names Singh and Kaur. But a Manpreet Singh Sidhu would be reduced to Manpreet S. Sidhu. Or even if he becomes a Manpreet Singh, he will not find manpreet.singh@gmail.com as user ID. So he will settle for manpreet.sandhu@gmail.com. Somehow the moniker comes back to us. Is it dangerous for us? Not theoretically. But still..

The notion of caste was from the beginning a tool to keep some people on top and others on the bottom.
And it is a bottomless pit. Even the low class are divided into high, med and low lower classes. The low lower classes can't have brides from high lower classes. And other things continue in their own partial universe.
 

spnadmin

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Very eloquent Veer Kanwaljit ji. So maybe our young people will like cave-divers explore all the facets of the pit, collect their evidence, turn it over and over, see there is a higher logic than where they had been, climb out, and say, Gurmukẖ jāṯ paṯ sabẖ āpe. Sure was dark and lonely down there!
 

Luckysingh

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Dec 4, 2011
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jatts consider them as higher caste or superior ones and they see others like tarkhans as backward class....
Some of my family claim that I am a jatt by birthright, even though I know more about woodwork joints, saws, T-squares, dowells...etc..etc.. more than most tarkhans when compared to jatts.

However, I find that having a little bit of skill of every caste and trade makes me the Ultimate Higher Caste that simply cannot be matched !

I call this ultimate status........The SIKH of the Guru.icecreamkaur:singhbhangra::grinningsingh:
 

spnadmin

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SP ji If only I were as smart and as witty as you clearly are. My entire life would have been quite different. Oh well, since you did intend the post to sound insulting, I must keep it deleted. Thanks for the clarification.

p/s Audio feed from SPN is blocked by my firewall, making it difficult to know how your comment would sound. I had to go by how it looked.
 

Scarlet Pimpernel

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Spnadmin , when it come to most things I'm lucky ,not smart ,but to add something smart from a philosopher “man is in the world, and only in the world does he know himself’ .Merleau-Ponty

Dharami Ji asked 'briefly explain the relations between these two groups?' surely when it comes to relations its a personal matter ,I don't need anyone to tell me what relations are like as I don't follow group behaviours,my relations with my brother in law are great because I try relate to him as a person in his own right ,my nephews are beautiful hybrid Jatkhans.The only group you need to worry about is your blood group and even that can be cross matched.
 
Last edited:
Jul 30, 2011
26
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Some of my family claim that I am a jatt by birthright, even though I know more about woodwork joints, saws, T-squares, dowells...etc..etc.. more than most tarkhans when compared to jatts.

However, I find that having a little bit of skill of every caste and trade makes me the Ultimate Higher Caste that simply cannot be matched !

I call this ultimate status........The SIKH of the Guru.icecreamkaur:singhbhangra::grinningsingh:
that is the point...if we r making caste system on basis of mere profession how it makes sense of differentiating them into high or low caste !! we have exaggerated this very simple thing into complicated one(so called caste system)
 

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