World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article


Jatav, also known as Jatva/ Jatan/ Jatua/ Jatia.[1] is a social group that in India are considered to be a part of the Chamar caste, one of the untouchable communities (or dalits), who are now classified as a Scheduled Caste under modern India's system of positive discrimination.[2]


In the early part of the twentieth century, the Jatavs attempted the process of sanskritisation, claiming themselves to be historically of the kshatriya varna. They gained political expertise by forming associations and by developing a literate cadre of leaders, and they tried to change their position in the caste system through the emulation of upper-caste behavior. As a part of this process, they also claimed not to be Chamars and petitioned the government of the British Raj to be officially classified differently: disassociating themselves from the Chamar community would, they felt, enhance their acceptance as kshatriya. These claims were not accepted by other castes and, although the government was amenable, no official reclassification as a separate community occurred due to the onset of World War II.[3]

In order to uplift the caste status, a Jatav caste organisation named "Jatav Pracharak Sangh" was formed in 1924 at Agra that wedged a fierce campaign to achieve Kshatriya identity for Jatavs. They pressed hard for their claim and strived intensively for few years. But in the castes federal system of India, changes seldom occur and in case of untouchables or scheduled castes there are no chances at all. Unfortunately this powerful effort could result nothing, but it achieved benefits in other fields like politics.[4]

According to Indian Anthropologist Kumar Suresh Singh-

It is also felt that they were originally Jats. [5] The Chamars revolted against oppression of the upper castes and appealed to Raja Kishan Singh to identify them as Jats, but the Raja agreed to recon them as Jatav instead of Jat.[6]

According to the theory propounded by Adi Hindu Movement, untouchables are original Indian inhabitants, hence finding no favour from Arya Samaj and its followers like Jatav, some of whom identify them as Neo Buddhist.[7] In 1990, a huge lot of Jatavs was converted to Buddhism. [8]


  1. ^ Singh, Kumar Suresh (1993). The scheduled castes. Anthropological Survey of India. pp. 326,329,331. 
  2. ^ Chandel, M. P. S. (1990). A Social Force in Politics: Study of Scheduled Castes of U.P. Mittal Publications. p. 51.  
  3. ^ Singer, Milton; Cohn, Bernard S., eds. (2007). Structure and Change in Indian Society. pp. 216–217. 
  4. ^ Chandel, M.P.S. (1990). A Social Force in Politics. Mittal Publications. pp. 51,52.  
  5. ^ Singh, Kumar Suresh (1993). The scheduled castes. Anthropological Survey of India. p. 326. 
  6. ^ Singh, Kumar Suresh (1993). The scheduled castes. Anthropological Survey of India. p. 331. 
  7. ^ Singh, Kumar Suresh (1993). The scheduled castes. Anthropological Survey of India. p. 997. 
  8. ^ Singh, Kumar Suresh (1993). The scheduled castes. Anthropological Survey of India. p. 328.  

Further reading

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.