Research Project on Khaps by Raj Kumar Siwach

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Colloquium on Khap Panchayat


Dynamics of Justice Delivery Mechanism of Kinship Based Community Organizations: A Study of Khap Panchayats in Modern Indian Democracy

Department of Public Administration

Ch. Devi Lal University, Sirsa (Haryana)

Dr. Rajkumar Siwach (PI)

Dr. Sultan Singh (CI)

Department of Public Administration

Ch. Devi Lal University, Sirsa (Haryana)


Part – A

Part – A
1. Broad Subject: Public Administration
2. Area of Specialization: (i) Voluntary Organizations and Social Welfare (P.I.) (ii) Good Governance through Panchayati Raj Institutions (CI)
3. Duration: Three year
4. Principal Investigator:
(i) Name: Dr. Raj Kumar Siwach
(ii) Sex: Male
(iii) Date of Birth: March 02, 1969
(iv) Qualification: MA, Ph.D
(v) Designation:Reader
(vi) Address: Office: Dept. of Public Administration, Ch.Devi Lal University, Sirsa :Residence:E-7, CDLU, Sirsa
5. Co-Investigator(s):
(i) Name: Dr. Sultan Singh
(ii) Sex: Male
(iii) Date of Birth: 15-01-1972
(iv) Qualification: MA, Ph.D
(v) Address: Office: Dept. of Public :Administration, CDLU, Sirsa, Residence: 2, Type E-II, :CDLU,Sirsa
6. In case of a retired teacher, please give the following information: NA
7. Name of Institution where project will be undertaken:
(i) Department:Dept. of Public Administration, CDLU, Sirsa
(ii) University/college:Ch. Devi Lal University, Sirsa, Haryana
8. Whether the University/College/Institution is approved under Section 2 (f) and 12 (B) of UGC Act? YES
9. Teaching and Research Experience of Principal Investigator:
(a) Teaching Experience: 14 years
(b) Research Experience: 17 years
(c) Year of Degree awarded: 1997
(d) Title of thesis for doctoral degree: Role of Voluntary organizations in Social Welfare in Haryana
(e) Publications (During last five years, List enclosed in Annexure) (i) Papers Published: 14 Accepted: 01 Communicated: 00 (ii) Books Published: 01 Accepted: 00 Communicated: 00

Part – B

Part – B
Proposal for the Research Work
10. (i) Title of the Project
Dynamics of Justice Delivery Mechanism of Kinship Based Community Organizations: A study of Khap Panchayats in Modern Indian Democracy
(ii) Introduction:

In every society certain activities are undertaken by the government for public interest and ordered social relations. This phenomenon of Government, in the views of MacIver, (1965) emerges within the social life and is inherent in the nature of social order. He further remarks: “Man’s social nature is a complex system of response and needs. In relation of man to man everywhere there is the seed of the government. It takes different institutional shapes according to the interplay of these relations.” The origin of Government, in the simplest societies lacks formal ministers or agents but operates through folk myths. The existence and living of human mankind requires social order which always permeates every form of government. Government, in essence, is an aspect of society.

In this background, we can say that community governance based on kinship relations and social needs has been an organizational arrangement for accomplishing commonly agreed aims. This, through different historical periods, bear numerous names like phrateries, guilds, sabhas, samitis, sanghas, Panchayats and Khap Panchayats.

Evolution of Kinship Based Village Councils in the Study Area

The origin, growth and development of village communities in the Haryana can be traced back to post-Harappan period. The archaeology and history of the Harappan-Hakra civilization of the pre-Vedic period of the region is as fascinating and captivating as the Vedic and post-Vedic civilization during which the region witnessed setting up of thousands of village estates settled and populated by roaming pastoral communities known as Goetes or Maha Jats of yore. It came to be developed into small village republics later forming into loose Ganas at local level and Janapadas at regional levels. The entire region from eastern Afghanistan to the fertile doab touching the interior vastness of the Gangatic plains in the east and from the foothills to the Himalayas to the northern sandy plains of Rajpootana, intermittently dotted by the isolated hillocks of the Aravallis, was occupied by the Jats.

Many ancient village estates settled during those times lost continuity but were resettled sometime after 1200 AD by migrating hordes of the Jats that never returned to either the pastoral culture and life or their old settlements. This paved the way for the people to develop themselves into more civilized communities and improved cultural life to be regulated by the village councils comprised of the old and wise men. The early centuries of the historical period, beginning the reign of the Chandragupta Maura, sometime in 313 BC, to the end of the reign of King Harshvardhana in 656 AD, witnessed numerous new village republics settled across the vast region laid on both sides of Uttrapath, and also the village councils known as Kshatraps reaching to a status of maturity.

An all India form of Sarvadeshiya Khap known as Puga also came to be established which remained in force during the entire period of the life of the kingdoms of ancient India. Its activity was heard more in western and southern India than the north Indian plains in which it came into action only at the time of the invasion of Mahmud of Gazhni. However, during the Islamic and Mughal period once heard murmurs about their sporadic activities and low lying profiles due to fear of reprisals against the alien rulers. The basis of the Khap is essentially kinship relationship. It came to be developed as of purely temporary character coming into shape only when an issue is referred to it for decision of a dispute. The organization and character of a Gotra Khap and Sarva Khap cannot be equated with a Gram Sabha, professional guilds and modern Panchayats but understood in the light of very strong tribal affinities, familial lineages and kinship relationships that not only determine norms but have also regulated the social life of the Jats for more than millennia (Ludlow, 1858, Mathai 1915, Shastri 1944 and Singh 1994).

In modern Haryana, western Uttar Pradesh, Delhi and north-eastern Rajasthan, the Gotra Khaps and their federations have played a vital role in securing the racial character, preserving the social values, customs and conventions and take punitive measures when disputes were brought before them for obtaining justice. The successive governments of the day didn’t dare to intervene into their affairs until they came out in open defiance of state policy adversely affecting their tenancy rights to land tilling, religious and social life and modesty of womenfolk. Until a strife is fully flown, everything was peaceful in the countryside but the peace was broken only when it disturbed the wider social fabric with which a new kind of open society through the processes of democratization are sown in the name of absolute freedom in the garb of human rights of an individual.

A spate of events in recent times reported about killing of young men and women in the name of honor by kith and kin was attributed to Khaps. These Khaps were blamed to be the perpetrators of the crime in the name of protecting the honor of the tribe for violating the traditional norms governing matrimonial alliances among Jats and a few other castes in the above cited region.

Whether or not, the Khaps should be seen as perpetrators of crime in the light of the views expressed by official agencies of the State, opinion leaders and attitude makers which recently attained wide coverage in the media – electronic as well as print. Thus, the issue that needs to be examined in depth for establishing truth is, not only about the true character and functioning of the Khaps but also the biological, sociological and psychological reasons that go into the genesis of the problem. In order to avoid chaos in a particular social group (Jats) constituted by several thousands sub-groups (gotras) causing an unreviewable process of destabilization and strife, the role of the State intervention for maintaining law and order needs to be examined. Without hindering the growth of democratization of the rural communities and the diversity of the cultural conventions of this vast group comprising sizeable population in the North, Northwestern and Central India, brainstorming intellectual activity by the scholars of the day is also essential to enquire into in what way civil liberties and human rights can be protected.

Origin of the Research Problem

The origin and development of the research problems have multidimensional aspects concerning the society as a whole. Because, the Gotra has universal application. To Engels (1884), the Latin word “gens” has similar connotation “genos” of the Greeks, “gan” of the Aryans, Sanskrit “Janas”, Gothic “kuni”, Nordic and Anglo-Saxon, “kyn”, English “kin” and Middle High German “kunne”, all imply kinship descent. This “gens” based custom also played a vital role in social life of the tribes by prescribing headman, matrimonial rules, inheritance of property, councils to settle disputes, adoption, ceremonies, common burial places and brotherhood unity bound together by ties of kins. He said that “the genes was the foundation of the social order of most, if not all, barbarian, peoples of the world, in Greece and Rome we pass directly from it into civilization” (p.39).

The documentation and published literature (in the media, semi-scholarly and scholarly journals) on this issue is inadequate having great deficit in comprehensive exploration of the issues that may have scholarly involvement of faculties of various branches of knowledge such as Sociology, Public Administration, Law and Justice, Economics, Anthropology and Biology. The eruption of the issue of branding Khap Panchayats as ‘silent spectators’ of the heinous crime of killing of young lovers or married couple belonging to the same gotra or diverse castes has becoming topical for specific type of debate in social, political and judicial circles. It necessitates a fresh and systematic look at the problem before the society and the issue of governance of clans turning ‘rebels’ or becoming ‘renegades’ in the light of the modern law that evolved otherwise, becomes a regular problem of governance and order in society.

It is proposed to identify the study area on several zones comprising territorial jurisdiction of gotra Khaps, particularly those in which the incidents of honor killing or annulling of matrimonial alliance came to be reported after the Khap Panchayats remained dormant/silent or took cognizance and announced verdicts that was socially and legally trounced by the affected parties or forced upon them or termed unconstitutional by media trials. In the hot spots where the incidents actually occurred or/and faced social trials, first hand information will be collected on actual prevalence of conventions and customs relating to fixing of matrimonial alliances and the type of punishment prescribed by Khap Panchayats in the name of tradition. The actual status of the extent and depth of knowledge with the local society or gotra headmen also need to be looked into because it was the main factor on the basis of which abuse of liberty and social status was used to defy convention or violate the traditional norms followed for ages.

As customary prescription for fixing matrimonial alliances among Jats, three gotras (in ascending order) from the side of the bridegroom’s family and three from the bride’s should need to be essentially avoided. In addition, the Bhaichara gotras are also avoided as per the standard practice followed for centuries. Due to sharing of tenancy rights, land tenures and cultivable land or grants of properties to kins it happened that a single village estate came to be inhabited by several gotras of the same clan preventing inter-mixing or exogamy in regard to matrimony. It sowed seeds of Bhaichara and restrained people of from entering into matrimonial alliances even if it were another gotra because it was accorded status of a brother and his children treated as his own children .

Therefore, brother and sister could never become husband and wife because it would be incest and nothing else. The clue to openness that caught by the younger generation by the forelocks came from the numerous Bollywood movies that provided inputs for leaving indelible impact on the virgin minds for considering free-mixing as the right course for an adult man and woman.

In addition to the foregoing, a fertile milieu provided by rapid urbanization of the neighborhood town that hardly takes notice of the kinship relationship as determined by gotras or tribes in village communities made the younger generation understand that sex was not taboo and it was something negotiable between the two opposite sexes. The disputable situation that prompted violations of traditional norms in which incest (as defined by sages and indicated in the preceding lines) was prohibited, arose when the family of a young man from the dominating gotra in a village estate found it cumbersome to search an ideal bride or a bridegroom. On the other hand, the young man noticing the desperation came forward to renounce the rules that prohibited incest and opted for a young woman on the sly from his own village estate for establishing matrimonial type of relationship. This was categorized as clear violation of the traditional norms, which provoked the relatives to either take immediate violent action ending in ‘honor killing’ or renounce the couples for ever banishing them from the village from cohabiting in their vicinity for fear of reprisal from the society.

From structural point of view, the hierarchical order based on the age formed the leadership of a Khap in a family that may have governed a cluster of villages of the same clan of one gotra. For instance, at Ahulana in district Sonepat could be the best in which case it had run in a single family since the Gathwals (Maliks) came to settle this nuclear village and in due course of time other estates sprang from it. Clusters of villages belonging to the same gotra forming single territorial jurisdiction are numerous in several regions comprising the above named States of the Union of India that are mostly inhabited by hundreds of Jat clans. These includes Tomars in Barot district of UP, Tewatias in Faridabad, Sorots in and around Hodal, Phaugats in an around Dadri, Sangwans in an around Charkhi Dadri, Sheorans in and around Loharu, Nains in and around Narwana, Rathis in Bhaprauda and surrounding villages, Jakhars in Ladain and several other surrounding villages, Ahlawats in Sheria and half a dozen other villages adjoining the nuclear village, Dalals in Chhara, Asauda and Mandothi encircling Silothi, Hoodas in Sanghi, Khidwali, Kiloi, Asan and Ghuskani, Kadiyans in Chimni, Beri and 10 other villages adjoining each other, Dahiyas in Barona and 42 other large and small villages forming a continuous territorial hegemony and Deshwals in Ladhot, Baliana and Dulhera, etc. (Ludlow, 1958; Shastri, 1944; Singh, 1994; Sant, 1957; Tiemann, 1962, Muzaffar, 1965 and Datta, 1999).

One of the basic tenets of qualifying to be nominated as a member of the Khap Pnachayat has been the Headmanship that came naturally to the Parvar Mukhiya of the first family of the village, which normally was the one that founded the village estate. The natural right of becoming a headman was foregone only in specific circumstances. The clan could have several headmen and the senior most would naturally earn the title of the Head of the Khap except in his absence or incapacity or his becoming insane. In that case the Headman would be nominated by consensus. The Headmen of Gotra Khap drawn from each village down to the Thola level would decide a dispute by themselves brought before them for hearing and settlement. But for debate and decision on larger and common causes that affect the whole of the race or several clans and social groups, the supreme body would be constituted by nomination from the Headmen of each clan. It, thus, earned a universal character, validation of authority and right to hear appeals. ‘Bhaichara’ constituted the major pillars upon which the superstructure of Khap Panchayats could securely rest and which kept the traditional professions of cultivation and rearing of cattle flourishing.

After taking the holistic view of the problem, the present study shall address the trends of the Headmen and path trod by them which were under the scanner for enraging the sensitivities of various organs of the State on account of ‘community governance’, ‘kinship’, ‘customary law’, ‘incest & taboos’, ‘lineage based clan leadership or headman ship’, ‘gotra’ and the ‘system of informal delivery of justice and mechanism of its validation’.

The number of gotras of the Jats ranging from 3179 to 4830, which makes to appear it like a matrix in which it may become difficult to find a safe path to tread for matrimonial alliances . But despite a crack here and another there, it has been amazingly successful in its history of more than two and a half millennia. The beauty of the system is not breaking of it but making it stronger by weaving a new matrix in which the role of geneticists, bio-statisticians, sociologists, legislators, legal experts and administrators cannot be underrated in any sense. The wisdom is not in destroying the age-old and time-tested system in the name of unbridled freedom that may smash the social harmony in future but in setting up scientific enquires for gathering sufficient evidence to verify the truth hidden in ancient wisdom of inventing ‘gotra’ –a sort of classification of origin of families and species of human race that now represent an enormous number of over 7 billion. As concurring evidence it would be interesting to study the social system that has been followed in ancient and mother civilization such as Egypt and China vis-à-vis modern societies such as Germany, Scotland and Japan.

The Khaps Panchayats have been often accused of following a feudal outlook in respect of assemblage, management of proceedings of the meetings, complete absence of record keeping, deliverance of justice and re-validation or/and ratification of decisions. Besides, autocratic imposition and intolerance were some of the other adjectives that were affixed to create abhorrence to the existence of Khap Panchayats in the regions dominated by Jats.

With above things in view, the proposed study will undertake to investigate and test independent, dependent and intervening variables in the measurable way, which in the research methodology are termed as hypothesis or postulates. The perusal of the accessible literature unravels the knotty problem by not only helps the investigators to tread on specific direction but also accumulates their knowledge in the chosen area.

Interdisciplinary relevance

The research problem selected for the proposed project is wider in scope having interdisciplinary dimensions. In Public Administration, there has always been the symbiotic relationship between administrative behaviour and social values under the garb of administrative ecology. The phenomenon of governance has widened its domain by encompassing civil society, NGOs and community organizations in assisting to deliver public services fairly and efficiently .The traditional authority as propounded by Max Weber still dominates the officials conduct and operations of administrative machinery. This kind of traditional authority in the Khaps is represented by the elders, who issue orders, not on the basis of written rules but on the basis of customary beliefs. Ever since the resurgence of the traditional authorities of the Khap Panchayats in the countryside, the feeling is being evolved that the authority of the constitutionally elected Panchayats is being undermined has caused reverberations in upper echelons of the hierarchy of governance. The process of decentralization of governance through the constitutionally elected Panchayats and the recent initiatives of the Government is being threatened by the Khap Panchayats, is an issue that need to be analyzed to absolve the later from interfering into the domain of democratic governance.

There may be variables in time and space, visible as well as hidden, that need to be identified for quantifying their effect in shaping the rules of governance in the traditional as well as modern civil society in which the kinship, Culture, ethics, legitimacy of matrimony, clan, socialization, taboos and lineage find place of dominance in the core areas of Sociology.

The recent verdicts pronounced by the subordinate Court of Law at Karnal in the Manoj of Babli honor-killing case and its endorsement by both the Punjab & Haryana High Court and the Supreme Court of India have far reaching consequences for the future of governance by traditional modes. It asserts on us a responsibility to view the relationship and linkages between law, constitution, custom and jurisprudence in an entirely new perspective. The psephologists are conducting studies to gauge the role of numerical strength of different castes and communities in the first –past-the –post system of vote bank Politics. They can get insights from dynamics of voting behaviour based on political expediency to please social groups for supporting traditional but contentious issues. The origin, growth and evolution of social institutions that constitute the core curriculum of the History also touched upon by the selected problem.

The economic conditions of production and reproduction paved the way for the growth of society and government. The earlier jajmani system of barter based economic relations in the villages which is not in the vogue now has weakened the web of traditional ties cemented by agricultural tasks. The profit motive still happens to be the hidden agenda behind honour related crimes.

The kinship terminologies and relationships has always been the subject of enquiry for the Anthropologists. It is relevant here to understand deeply the meaning and uses of Bhaichara norm and incestuous relations, if couple falls within this zone. The influence of urbanization, modernization, globalization and human rights has weakened the joint families and kinship based lineages, consequently, loosing emotional attachment of children to parents and their family of origin. These days, the theme of incest has attracted the attention of social and natural scientists because sanctions associated with it have begotten violence, social discord and anomie. Under such circumstances, the relationship between regulation of sex and marriage and efficacy of administrative response need to be probed scientifically.

The gotra concept needs to be studied scientifically. This will invite the entry of Genetics in the field of Social Sciences to measure the effects of blood related marriages and genetic disorders of such inbreeding affecting physical and mental growth.

On the whole, a Synthesis Theory stemming from multi disciplines of human behaviour, shall explicate the comprehensive scientific explanation of the causes, conditions and consequences of incest taboos and exogamous rules within family and outside the families.

Review of Research and Development in the Subject

Both Indian and foreign scholars from the disciplines of Anthropology, Public Administration, Biology and Medicine, Statistics and Pubic Law have evinced keen interest in investigating the evolution of governance by Headmen with traditional method of organizing themselves into bodies such as Khaps in northern India. Valuable information, though inadequate, was compiled afresh, reviewed and analyzed necessitating further enquiries into the problems created by parallel method of clan-governance in society that often erupt between such bodies as indicated and the government of the day, thereby putting constraints on the administrative machinery for keeping peace as means of co-existence and harmony. So, it becomes necessary to examine the phenomena both at international and national level.

International status

In view of Engels (1884) the civilization history of mankind shows that in Greece and Rome the gens, equivalent to gotra, determined the foundation of social order. This base of blood ties played a crucial role in keeping the families together by prescribing marriages rules forming tribal organizations and other socio-political and economic relations.

Some anthropologists have dealt this subject under Totemism. The numerous social groups of the tribes developed communistic organizations for adjudicating disputes. With the passage of time different civilizations grew and evolved social groups and popular assemblies, which may not be the replica of the Khap Panchayats but performed, more or less, similar functions by delivering administrative and judicial services. These were phratries and gentes among Indian tribes of America, agora and phratries among Grecian Gens, curia among Romans and genealogiae (village community) and commune in Germans.

To be specific about other regions, during later period, Zirga in Pakistan, Loya Zirga in Afghanistan, kinship clubs in Arab Countries, cousin clubs in USA and Dozoku in China acted as primitive community associations. The documentary evidences of African tribal system of community governance provide revealing insights into the working, procedures and judicial powers of these traditional bodies. These ecclesiastical courts have, besides other issues, over zealously addressed the customary rules of mate selection through matrimonial alliances. They resort to regressive penalties for enforcing the decisions in the name of honor. The victims are served severe punishment in the forms of beheading, death by pelting of stones, chopping off the limbs such as the nose, ear and legs, acid attacks and gang rapes. According to UN, 5000 deaths per year are reported in Dharki, North West Frontier Province, Baluchistan, Multan, Punjab (Pakistan), Jordan, Afghanistan, Egypt, Gaza and West Bank (The Tribune, 2010). The studies, mentioned below, provide insights into tribal justice prevailing in African countries.

Fortes and Evans (1940) have analyzed the community based traditional adjudication system of African tribes. They have found that the punishment is regarded as the direct expression of public sentiment. In the primitive societies the social order is maintained within territorial frame work by the organized exercise of coercive authority through physical force.

Schapera (1956) has studied the system of government and politics in the tribal societies of South Africa. He, for this purpose, cited the elaborate organizational structure of Bartu Tribe where the chief acted as legislator as well as judge to settle disputes. Under him, there were sub-chiefs in districts headmen in sub districts, village and wards.

Gluckman (1955) traces the judicial system of Lozi people of Rhodesia in Africa. The genealogy of the Lozi judges is presented and their judicial operandi is discussed. They reconcile disputants not at the cost of glossing over wrong doing. They acted sensibly and conformed to customs known to all litigants, witnesses and judges. The social stereotypes were in practice to judge the crimes. The judges never used detectives finger prints but customary behavior was tested by judicial cross-examination of direct and circumstantial evidence.

National Status

From Manu onwards all the ancient sages of India studied gotra and determined it one of the principle tenets of the social order in India. Throughout the history of the Indian sub-continent the blood ties played a crucial role in keeping the families together by prescribing rules of matrimony in societies that retained their tribal identities despite adopting many modern ways of life in their socio-political and economic relations. Similar evidence has been in existence even in many highly modernized societies. In the Muslim world the tribes followed their own system of identification, which was recorded by the western scholars in the nineteenth century when expeditions were planned in central Asian countries and the Arab world. In respect of Indian sub-continent kinship relationship and gotras were recorded in numerous district gazetteers and settlement reports produced by the British Indian officers for every region including those inhabited by various clans of Jats, Pathans and the Baluchs (Ludlow, 1958; Sant, 1957 and Muzaffar, 1965).

In India Sabhas, Smities, Sanghas, guilds, sreni, nadus, puga, gana, pancha-mandali, panchalika or panchali, and Nagara find references in various texts, inscriptions and epigraphy. Majumdar (1969) evaluated the system of governance as practiced in the villages and said that the powers of village council had the sanction of society and was not handed over to the community by a fiat of ruler. No rules were laid down by the state. Every village community had the freedom to develop its own institutions. The powers of governance were derived by the tacit consent of the community or sometimes a group of persons.

The concept of Bhaichara has been widely discussed in the work of Baden-Powell (1899) in the light of practiced customs of peasantry communities. It connotes customary sharing as well as the modes of allotment other than the ancestral share system. To quote J.D. Mayne, the Bhaichara means villages where the land holdings are barren causing the loss under adverse circumstances and which is shared between heirs equally not on the basis of ancestral shares but on common agreement. It was common feeling to share common holding when exact lineage was not known.

Based on the Census report of 1881, Ibbetson (1883) documented the geographical prevalence of gotras and castes of the Punjab region. He had made great effort to record and enlist the impressions retained as ‘smriti’ about the origin of various gotras of Hindus, tribe names of the Muslims and the Jat Sikhs in Sirsa tehsil and districts of erstwhile Punjab in addition to Delhi. He took note about the historical significance and oral accounts of the origin of gotras such as Cheema, Waraich, Ghuman, Kahlon, Goraya, Chathe, Virk, Sindhu, Bhullar, Maan, Aulak, Gill, Dhariwal, Dhindsa, Gandhi, Kang, Sohal, Bains, Dahiya, Halania Ghatwals (i.e, Maliks or Ghatwals of village Ahulana near Gohana in dist. Sonepat), Jaglan, Latmar, Huda, Dagar, Jakhar, Sangwan, Sahrawat, Golia, Rathi, Khatri, Dalal, Deswal, Dhankar, Phogat, Beniwal and Nain .

Mookerji (1920) traces the evolution of local self governance as reflected in culture, instincts, traditions and habits of the guilds and collective assemblies. Thus, the origin of local self governance grew out of fluid and inchoate condition of tribal life and ancient communities way of living. There were qualifications and disqualifications for the leaders of local bodies including honesty, self-restraint and free from avarice. The authority was binding upon members and recognized and respected by the ruler or the King. If we understand the meaning of Khaps and Sarva Khaps as they exist today then such bodies in the peninsular south India were known as “Nadu” or “Nagaras” or “Kottam” and other commercial corporations and guilds.

Lewis (1958) has studied the Rampur village of Delhi dominated by Dabas gotra. He had analyzed the kinship patterns in the village by taking into account terms like gotra, thola, pana and kunba. By kunba, he meant a group of near-relatives, which traced their origin to a common ancestor up to two generations backwards. It is a sort of localized patrilineage. For him, gotra referred to the non-localized, exogamous, patrilineal and named as kinship clan. It is evident that he was not clear about these terms as the lineage was wrongfully equated with horizontal expansion of the clan within the same habitation i.e. within the periphery of a village. In Rampur Dabas in which Deswal and Kharb Jats also have substantial presence Panas and thollas were named after the ancestral headmen as can be verified from the revenue records revised by the British Indian administrative officers during the land settlement survey accomplished in 1860. The oral accounts of the origin and migration of these people belonging to diverse gotras as recorded by the Settlement officer may not be true but it is fact the headmen were appointed as Lambardars or representative of Government of the village. He was responsible for collection of tax, maintenance of law and order, reporting officer on the village watchman, defend interests of village and its communities, could arbitrate in caste and familial disputes and preside over ceremonial functions.

Pradhan (1966) had extensively studied and analyzed the lineage of the councils of Jats, which were mainly guided by consideration of morality. This work accomplished in the Kashyap clan of Jats of Muzaffarnagar district (UP) mainly dealt with Baliyan Khap comprising a cluster of 84 villages. The material was also collected from the villages of Shoran, Sisuali and several adjoin village estates in Meerut Division (administrative unit) including Khap Salakhain or Desh, Khap Badanu and Khap Meerutwasa. The research study entitled ‘Socio-political Origin of the Jats of Meerut Division’ was submitted for the award of Ph.D. degree to University of London in Dec. 1961. While dealing with economic and demographic history of the selected villages, the study examined the internal structure and functions of the clan and the Khap Panchayat at the grassroots level–patti, thamba, thola, guwand (neighborhood villages) and Sarva Khap Councils. The powers, jurisdiction and working of Khap Panchayat in matters of local disputes have been intensively examined by quoting 50 instances

Sangwan, in his unpolished theses (1986), has evaluated the role of the Panchayat of the ‘Meham-Chaubisi’ (a Council of the Headmen of 24 villages settled in the neighborhood of Meham in district Rohtak. This Council came into being in 1858 in the aftermath of events of the Mutiny of 1857) in the elections held for the legislative assembly of the State and noted that the Council exercised its legitimacy of social kind while resolving to support various candidates which contested from 1952 to 1986.

In a case study, recording the proceedings of a Khap comprising 15 villages in Bhiwani district of Haryana, Dhagamwar (2009) clamored for designing of an extensive program on the analogy of the awareness campaigns for universal immunization against Polio, HIV/AIDS or Family planning to disseminate information on the issues of bigamy and polygamy which still persist in India. She recorded the events of dispute settlement by the Khap Panchayat held on January 27, 2002. The case study obviously revealed the fact of bigamy and frivolous litigation by a close relative of the family to siphoning off substantial amount received as a help from brother-in-law. Yadav (2009) has analyzed the reasons of making the Khap Panchayats as the target of public ire. For him, these included propagating feelings of alienation and overbearance of the and autocratic behaviour and atrocious decisions flung on the victims by the functionaries of the Khap Panchayat declaring that it was a case of incest that is taboo for near blood relations of with a kin.

Dave and Tanwar (2010) in their study analyzed the perception of people towards constitutional Panchayats and Khap Panchayats. The Headmen of these Khap Panchayats were elderly, experienced, dominating, commanding and respectable individuals having adequate knowledge of gotra system. The Khaps are formed through tribal affiliations of historical standing, which the urbanites view as anti-women, self styled decision making bodies perpetuating as age old customs, rituals and hierarchal orders through emotional appeals. The respondents opined that in patriarchal society the women have neither knowledge of issues adjudicated by the Khaps, nor the courage to speak out.

While sharing the extending tentacles of the Khap Panchayats, Singh (2010) felt the need of concerted efforts by the polity, civil society and media to tame these anachronistic feudal institutions. Due to electoral consideration, he expressed that the state polity has bowed to clout of these Khaps and has been providing them overt and covert support.

Not only in Haryana but also in the other states caste based traditional institutions play a dominant role in local politics and governance. In a study of 30 villages of Mysore, Dharwad and Raichur districts of Karnataka by Ananthpur (2007), the empirical data showed the influence and interaction between Customary Village Councils (CVCs)and the statutory Gram Panchayats (GPs). These CVCs having routed in the traditional practices, values and power relations occupy the apex position over other caste Panchayats and street Panchayats.

Brough (1953) investigated the most important problems connected to the clan system of Vedic Brahmans, which even today follow the exogamous system in the performance of rituals and marriages. Until Sutras (4th BC) the explicit prohibition of marriage within ‘gotra’ does not appear in the literature. Relying on various scriptures and rituals, the author makes an account of the gotras. He believes that misinterpretation and ignorance of the sources like Panini’s Yaska-a gotra name, Nirukta, Katyana, Patanjali, Kachappa-Jataka gotra parivar manjari of Pursottama pandit, Pali books, Devanna Bhatta Pravara-dipika. Parvara Darpan of Kamalkara bhatta and documents of India office Library eggeling No.’s 1777, 1778, 1779, 1780, 1781.

Phaugat (2002 and 2009) cited several reports appeared in national and international Journals on bio-medical sciences which, by and large, provided empirical evidence to demonstrate the rate and extent of occurrence of congenital diseases and genetic disorders in consanguineous marriages among various communities. Whether the Jats have succeeded in preserving their gene-pool for keeping the off springs healthy, is a question yet to be scientifically answered, the author asks. He also carefully analyzed the content of several media reports for their accuracy and said that the reporters should acquire basic knowledge about society before attempting to file reports.

Sheoran (2010) has studied the working of active Khap panchyats in Haryana. He said that in the southern part of the state, these bodies are called

Pal. In the northern part comprising Ambala, Panchkula, Kurukshetra and Pehowa the Khaps have not been constituted. With regard to jurisdiction, each Khap covers between 5 to 757 villages. On the basis of his presented data, the total numbers of Khap Panchayats in Haryana has been calculated as 149. Their area wise number is enumerated as many as 102 in Hodel, Palwal and Mewat, 9 in Gurgaon, Rewari, Mohindergarh and Jhajjar, 8 in Rohtak and Sonepat, 9 in Bhiwani, 1 in Sirsa, 7 in Hisar, 2 in Jind, 3 in Kaithal, 3 in Panipat, 2 in Karnal and 3 in Yamuna Nagar.

Dalal (2010) opined that the tradition of consultation and reverence to the wisdom of the elders laid the foundation of the Khaps. He also examined the relevance of Khaps while citing some examples. He defined the Khap as a unit organized for political and social purposes to exert social control in rural areas. Their working procedure is accessible and democratic. Starting from 643, the history of the Khaps is divided into four phases. The resolution of Khap Panchayats Mukhiya Samelan held at Rohtak on September 8, 2002, also discussed. Baxi, et. al. (2006) have made a comparative analysis of the working of ‘governance of politics’ represented by the state statutory bodies and ‘governance of communities’ comprising caste Panchayats and jirgas in India and Pakistan. The authors have opined that caste Panchayats and jirgas (tribal councils) in the name of familial honor torture, kill, abduct or lynch women and men for transgressing the religious, class and caste based normativities.

Singh and Tyagi (2010) have apprehended that the tradition of Khap Panchayats face the conspiracy by the certain vested interests which earlier were designed by the Britishers to influence thinking, attitudes, interests and ethics of the citizens. For this purpose, the authors blame media and narrow interpretation of freedom to marry and peeped into why these Khaps have been termed as, “talibani”, “rustic”, “feudal” and “conservative”? The lopsided view of “Honour Killings” is not justified, the authors assert. Such conspiracy hatched by Western and Urbanization, Capitalism and industrialization to target rural folk and the family life.

The tension of repressive social forces operating in Haryana, Chowdhry (2005) feels, is unleashed by the growing number of unmarried, unemployed men and elderly men. This group strengthens casteism, cleavages, exploitation which in turn leads to greater aggression and violence. This, she terms the ‘Crisis of Masculinity in Haryana’ whose relation with power redefine the contours of social tensions. Such masculinities, in collusion with caste Panchayats dominated by a core group of elderly men, are legitimized and sustained through a public show of masculine collectivity, aggression and solidarity. The brief review of literature points out that the problem needs further exploration and elaboration. Only two studies were undertaken in the area, one in Political Science discipline and another in Sociology. The former lacks empirical data and conducted in the late sixties. Since then, the social and political landscape of the villages has changed dramatically. Another study was confined to role of the Khaps in the election process in Rohtak district. In addition to above limitations of these studies, the rural power structure has changed considerably in the wake of constitutional provisions and reservation to women, SCs and BCs in the Panchayats. An examination of independent and dependent variables shows that the constitutional ideals of equity and social justice are derailed by the orthodox belief system. Because, the folklore prevail over the changing conditions of socioeconomic change. This knowledge gap and inconsistency require fresh probe. Hence, the study is proposed.

Significance of the study

The Indian society has been passing through transitional period because the custom driven regressive tendencies are at loggerheads with liberal and progressive ideas. The women and youth are bewildered by the power of the rights conferred by traditions, customs and conventions which are wielded by the Headmen of the respective Khaps.

In fact, neither the tradition, nor the modernity, but the contemporary social and economic situations need to be understood in order to avoid narrow and lopsided perspective. As misdiagnose of tradition and misunderstanding of modernity have led the crises. Each society has prescribed taboos for incestuous relations. The tradition of prohibiting marriages on specific Gotras of Jats is also prevalent among Gisu of East Africa who adhere to minimum patrilineage within descent group. The perusal of historical records show that village based traditional institutions of dispute settlements, barring few, had promoted the culture of consensus, compromise, participation and informality which are even absent in the today’s august democratic bodies.

In order to separate the wheat from chaffs approach, this study is undertaken to evaluate the past in the context of the present concerns. The central issue of this project raised a central question: Can we create the public space for dialogue and discussion to accommodate and tolerate dissent, disagreement and contrary views?

The tribal thinking of nepotism, xenophobia and patronage arose out of hegemonic power, capital and influence perpetuated injustice and exploitation of the powerless and penniless. Not only Khap Panchayats in Haryana, UP and Rajasthan but ‘Katta’ Panchayats in Tamilnadu, Customary Village Councils in the Karnataka, Parsi Panchayats in Mumbai and kinship based rules in Bihar, Jharkhand and Keralas have been generating the clash, i.e. how to promote and nurture the reasoning of rationality in the domain of public affairs to adjudicate social tensions.

The aggressive demands raised by the Khap Panchayats have posed a crisis of governability to enforce law and maintain order because the ruling elites do not take the stern action against any social group which happens to form a large chunk of vote bank.

The leaders of different various political parties and social outfits too have expressed staggering responses to tackle the menace. Strikingly, the intellectuals are sharply divided over traditional institutions’ relevance and validity. The stunning silence by the youths who are the victims, is also a matter of grave concern.

The leaders of the various Khap Panchayats also exhibit self contradictory ideologies on contemporary social issues. The institutional bickering and factionalism have created the leadership crisis. On the whole, the public domain presents insidious vacuum characterized by apathy, silence and tolerance by numerous segments of the society and suzerainty by the dominant group.

Documents produced in the past were based mostly on the research organized on sporadic basis and at smaller scale that yielded a bit valuable but inadequate information. Fresh attempt at research for looking into the problem may help in formulation of future policies needed to tackle problems of social strife, prevention of the occurrence of crime in the name of ‘honor’ or the ‘clan’, thus saving upon precious resources of the State on wasteful spending on unproductive subjects that often divert attention and the energy of the state that may be required for the material and intellectual progress of the people.

In the absence of not commissioning large-scale studies by the concerned departments of the Govt., it becomes imperative to take up open-ended research initiatives for scientifically investigating the problem in a land in which several hot spots have existed in perpetuity offering challenge to governance. We need to develop specific tools of governance for the future that may inactivate or dormant in retrogressive and retro-democratic actions of the clan-psyche. It may be envisaged that field testing of the tools will need extensive State support and a mechanism of delivery that may be incorporated in the existing machinery of governance by behavioral modifications of State functionaries by the way of modules of training and strategies for awareness campaigns. The role of the mass-media and law making agencies for their specific tasks also need to be explicitly surveyed and the course charted for crisis control and management. In view of the above cited issues, the investigators intend to present a blueprint of recommendations before the government and policy makers so that the citizens of India can enjoy the fruit of justice, liberty, equality and fraternity.

(iii) Objectives:

The following shall be the objectives of the study:

  • 1. To assess the origin, growth and development of institutions, in particular the Khap Panchayats and, in historical perspective, understand their role in self-governance in perpetuity.
  • 2. To understand the interface between constitutionally created Panchayats and socially evolved Khap Panchayats.
  • 3. To study the composition, functional nature and appointment by consensus of nominees on the Khap Panchayats and to study if a pattern such as hierarchy, emerged out of these procedures.
  • 4. To understand the political, judicial and administrative responses of the respective organs of Government of the day towards the Khap Panchayats, particularly in response to a call for management during development of a crisis-like situation.
  • 5. To have an appraisal of the procedural norms of the Khap Panchayats to announce decisions and the directives.
  • 6. To assess the symbiotic relationship between formal law, custom, modernity and tradition in the context of contemporary socio legal and economic issues.
  • 7. To examine the extent and indulgence of gotra system on various modern processes of democratization and to understand and assess its manifest implications for maintaining harmony in society .
  • 8. To refresh and validate the socio-scientific functionality of the gotras of the Jats as an indispensable reference tool in fixing matrimonial alliances in terms of classical norm vs mores of the free society and consequential implications.
  • 9. To validate the predisposition and the level of exposure of the young persons towards traditional customs empirically followed by the Jats.
  • 10. To recommend ways and means for developing administrative and legal tools (Code of Conduct) for maintaining a harmonious relationship between different institutions/ organizations of society and state in a permanent and continuing mode.

(iv) Research Methodology

The research methodology is a systematic procedure to set up an enquiry for an identified problem of both principal and subordinate nature. In recent past, there has been great social and administrative commotion on this issue that have penetrated every fabric of society in north India with unknown and unproven consequences that are yet to surface. Lack of valid and scientifically indexed literature has sufficiently necessitated of a fresh academic enquiry with a wider scope of the study as propounded in the objective enlisted above.

a) Sampling Procedure

This study is proposed to be conducted in the States of Northern India viz. Haryana, UP (western districts), Rajasthan (northern districts) and Delhi in which the Jats with more than 4,800 gotra titles dwell in fairly larger numbers in village estates as per the data enumerated during various censuses beginning in 1864.

From the above named states and the territories, focus will be on the hot spots of the Khaps activities, traditional seats of the Khaps such as the nuclear village/mother village/originating village and the Head village of a gotra, particularly from which troubleshooting was reported in the recent past. These may constitute as primary sampling units, out of which the sample collection locations have to be identified and mapped. Occurrence of incidents relating to the Khap Panchayats and the epicenters of trouble will be taken as one of the major indicators of selection of a particular site.

It came to be noticed that Kaithal, Karnal, Jind, Bhiwani, Hisar, Rohtak, Jhajjar and Sonepat districts in Haryana; Saharanpur, Muzaffar Nagar, Meerut, Bulendshahar, Aligarh and Mathura districts in UP; NCR Delhi viz. Nazafgarh, Narela, Mehrauli, Munirka and Mahipalpur in addition to Sikar, Jhunjhunun, Nagaur and Bikaner in Rajasthan need to be visited for obtaining information relevant to the project

In view of the objectives of the study and nature of research problem, the following shall comprise the sample of the study.

  • 1. Victims
  • 2. Members of families of the victims
  • 3. Nominees of Khap Panchayats
  • 4. Leading persons in the Khap
  • 5. Members of other Castes
  • 6. Women participants as lead observers
  • 8. Members of nominees from the Constitutional Panchayat to Khap Panchayats / Sarva Khap Panchayats.
  • 9. Community based apolitical organizations such as Arya Samaj and NGOs as members including social activists
  • 10. Social Scientists and analysts, Biomedical scientists and scholar-researchers from other inter-related disciplines
  • 11. Officials from the judicial wing of the State
  • 12. Officials from the Administration
  • 13. Advocates and representatives from Bar Associations
  • 14. Politicians of different political parties
  • 15. Media persons, authors and independent scholars which have worked on the problem with a keen interest of their own
  • 16. Archivists
  • 17. Youths

The above list of the sources from which the primary information is desired to be collected, is only tentative, since it can only be finalized on the basis of the convenience and availability of respondents and other conditions in the field faced by the investigators .

b) Tools for Data Collection

Following the study of available records and published narratives, if any, about the demography and social evolution of the selected villages, the origin & growth of gotra and the social traditions as tools of self-governance will be re-discovered, refreshed and recorded on the basis of oral narratives. Since the respondents may represent both the literate as well as illiterate categories of people, a variety of tools such as the unstructured interviews and pre-determined, structured interviews complimented by focused group discussion may become an appropriate and comprehensive research tool for gathering maximum amount of information.

For making the study valid and reliable, equi-proportional representation will be ensured to literate-illiterate, elders-youth and male-female. The techniques of obtaining response in a printed questionnaire, emailing and interviews on telephone may also be used to gather information for the study. Besides secondary data, the primary data will be digitally compiled, analyzed and interpreted with modern computing machines. If need be, the consultation shall be held with specialists and experts in the respective fields.

c) Working Hypotheses:

The following shall be the working hypotheses of the study.

  • 1. Leaders may use caste identity, not as an instrument for social reform and solidarity but as an opportunity to mobilize, organize and exploit inflammatory sentiments for grabbing political power.
  • 2. The governing capacity of the state to maintain public order has often been constrained by electoral motives of the politicians, their staunch belief in the traditions and imminent backlash by other groups of the society.
  • 3. The compliance is based on precedents and faith in the collective wisdom of gerontocracy (members of the Khap Panchayat)
  • 4. It appears as if the ‘punishment’ awarded by the Khaps were sanctified by public sentiments and moral force manifest through reprobation, ridicule, boycott, ritual and supernatural sanctions and impending misfortune.
  • 5. The logic of fairness to judge matrimonial dispute is supported by emotional appeal to foster solidarity in conspicuous absence by open discussion and equality of opportunity for hearing the petitioners/respondents.
  • 6. The unity and cohesiveness of Khaps may depend upon lineage, contemporary socio-cultural issues, political motives, geographical distance and vibrant leadership.
  • 7. The genealogical traces of the gotra identity are inconclusive due to fusion-fission process of migration, feuds, and alliances of communities, thus pushing cognitive links towards assimilation, segmentations and permutation.
  • 8. Due to noticeable variations in marriage rituals and customs of different communities, no universal pattern for family law could be proposed.
  • 9. The village based kinship unity seems to be often deflated by disseminated knowledge, education, industrialization, modern secular and democratic values and awareness.
  • 10. There is an impression that adolescents face identity crisis of overlapping cultural norms and customary taboos often diffused by the mass media and socialization agents.

d) Framework of research questions-

Following questions emanating from the working hypotheses of the proposed study will be addressed:-

  • 1. What will be implications of Khap Panchayats’ insistence on gotra rule in the light of alarming sex ratio in Haryana?
  • 2. Will the strict adherence to spinda prohibition by ignoring social status and educational profile of the families and personally traits of would be spouses, be vital for the success of the marriage?
  • 3. Should matrimonial alliance by will and choice of the self be viewed as violation of traditional norms and need coercion of the most violent form of banishing the couple from the natural homes or the matrimonial bonds of the traditional styles tied up by orthodox rituals continue to be supported?
  • 3.1 If the former is inconsistent with the tradition then what should the humanitarian and rational tenets to be followed?
  • 4. Does the Khap leadership truly represent the interests, numerical strength, kinship loyalty and consensual support of the concerned Khap/community members?
  • 5. Why Khap Panchayats are aggressively taking up the matrimonial disputes ignoring local problems such as alcoholism, unemployment and poverty ?
  • 6. Why marriage prohibiting regulations are taking precedence over positive regulations prescribing when and why one should marry ?
  • 7. Should not the clan genealogist be invited to aid and advise the parents before their children are solemnized into matrimonial alliance.
  • 8. Why the constitutionally elected Panchayats are not intervening to settle the disputes within their domain?
  • 9. Why the gotra restrictions, more often than not, are not strictly followed in respect of matrimonial alliances when prospective male and female happen to be highly educated and belong to influential families of the village/town?
  • 10. Why the medical profile of the prospective mates is not exchanged or shared before the marriage?
  • 11. Why the fines, moral sanctions, excommunication, torture and murder are awarded in the cases of default in gotra matching when the matrimonial alliance has already occurred and progressed into a family?
  • 12. Why the Gotra of only male (father) and not the female (mother) is considered as the Gotra of the siblings neglecting the biological interpolation of the genes of both the parents?
  • 13. Is the gotra rule applied universally in all castes and communities across the country? If so, in what form and up to what extent it is prohibited?
  • 14. Whether the ‘gotra’ theory has scientific explanation to its cultural identity?
  • 15. Does the matrimonial alliance within one community or consanguineous marriages have potential for creating congenital abnormalities or enhancing the chances of acquiring the genetic disorders or the abnormal traits?
  • 16. Would the inter-caste marriages have decreased the potential of congenial defects as compared to marriages in the same caste or community?

V) Year-wise Plan of work and targets to be achieved:

It is proposed that first year of the duration of the proposed Project may be devoted to scientifically exploring the scale and dimensions of the problem following review of the literature, in addition to holding formal as well as informal consultations with the scholars and knowledgeable persons across the disciplines.

In the second year, the field work of study will be undertaken with an idea of taking stock of the problem, to be followed by the data collection with the help of enumerators.

In the last year of the study, the collected data will be inspected, organized, analysed and interpreted and presented in an orderly and scientific manner. Following intense discussion with the scholars, the findings and the recommendations as consequence of the research will be incorporated in the Report.

VI) Collaboration & Consultations:

Scholars from the various institutes such as Indian Council for Social Sciences Research (ICSSR), New Delhi; Center for Policy Research, New Delhi; Indian Council of Medical Research, New Delhi; Institute for Research in Reproduction, Mumbai; Anthropological Survey of India, New Delhi; Indian Institute of Public Administration, New Delhi; Rural Litigation and Entitlement Kendra, Dehradun; Society for Participatory Research in Asia (PRIA), New Delhi; Jawahar Lal Nehru University, New Delhi and Haryana Institute of Rural Development, Nilokheri (Karnal) and Biostatisticians, Sociologists, intellectuals and Biomedical Scientists at PGI, Chandigarh and AIIMS, New Delhi shall be consulted to make the study as valid as possible that could stand scientific peer review as well, will be consulted.

References and Explanatory Notes

  • Altekar, A.S. (1927). A History of Village Communities in Western India, Oxford University Press
  • Baden- Powell, B.H. (1899). The Origin and Growth of village Communities in India, Swan Sonnenschein Co. London
  • Baxi, Pratiksha, Rai, Shrin M and Ali, Shaheen Sardar.(2006). Legacies of Common Law: “Crimes of Honour” in India and Pakistan, Third World Quarterly, Vol. 27, No. 7, pp. 1239-1253.
  • Brough, John (1953). The Early Brahmanical System of Gotra and Pravara. Cambridge Uni Press, Cambridge.
  • Dalal. C.S. (2010). Adhunik Haryana Aur Khap Panchayat Parampara, *Encyclopedia of Haryana, Vol. VIII, Vani Prakashan, New Delhi
  • Dangi Vivek, (2010). A study of proto-Historical settlements in Upper *Ghaggar Basin (A thesis), Department of History, Maharshi Dayanand University, Rohtak
  • Datta Nonica (1999). Forming an Identity: A Social History of the Jats, Oxford University Press, Delhi
  • Dave, Vandana and Tanwar, Reicha .(2010). Role of Khap Panchayats in Contemporary Haryana: An Analytical Survey, Journal of Haryana Society and Culture, Vol. I, No. I, April.
  • Dhagamwar, Vasudha (2009). August 1, Panch Parmeshwar, Economic & Political Weekly. Vol. XLIV, No. 31, pp 13-16.
  • Engels, F., (1884). The Origin of the Family, Pvt. Property and the State, People’s Publishing House, New Delhi.
  • Fortes, M and Evans, Pritchard EE .(Eds.).(1940). African Political System. Oxford Uni Press.
  • Gluckman, Max (1955). The Judicial Process Among the Barotse of Northern Rhodesia, Manchester Uni Press.
  • Ibbestson, Denzil (1883). Punjab Castes: Races Castes and Tribes of the People of Punjab. Cosmos Publication, New Delhi.
  • Lewis, Oscar (1958). Village life in Northern India : Studies in a Delhi Village. Uni of Illinois Press, Urbana.
  • Ludlow John Malcolm (1858). British India – Its Races and its History, Macmillan and Co., London
  • MacIver (1965). The Web of Government. The Free Press, London.
  • Majumdar, RC (1969). Corporate Life in India, Firma K.L. Mukhopadhyay, Calcutta. 42
  • Matthai John (1915). Village Government in British India (Reprint), Low Priced Publications, Delhi-52
  • Mayer, Adrran C. (1960). Caste and kinship in Central India. Routledge and Kegan Paul, London.
  • Mookerji, Radhakumud (1920). Local Govt. in Anciet India, Daya Publishing House, New Delhi.
  • Muzafer S. Ali (1965). The Geography of the Puranas, People’s Publishing House, New Delhi
  • Phaugat, Ranbir Singh (2002), Toot Rahi Hain Khap Panchayatain, Hari Bhoomi (Chaupal), Rohtak
  • Phaugat, Ranbir Singh (2009). Document on Society, Science, Khap and Media, Grameen Bharat Adhikar Manch, Rohtak.
  • Pradhan M.C. (1966).The Political System of the Jats of Northern India, Oxford Uni Press.
  • Sangwan, Khajan Singh (1986). An Unpublished Ph.D. Thesis entitled, Rural Elites and traditional Khap Panchayats: A Case of Meham Chaoubsi in Rohtak District, Panjab University, Chandigarh.
  • Sant Ram (1957). Hamara Samaj, Vishweshvaranand Vaidic Samsthan, Hoshiarpur (Pb.)
  • Schapera, I. (1956). Govt. and Politics in Tribal Societies, WATTS, London.
  • Shastri Yogendra Pal, (1944)., Pracheen Rajya Vansha & Jat Kshtriya Itihaas, Samyukta Prantiya Jat Kshtriya Sabha, Kankhal (Haridwar), UP, India
  • Sheoran, C.B. (2010). Haryana Main Khap Panchayat Parmpara, Encyclopedia of Haryana, Vol. VIII, Vani Parkashan, New Delhi.
  • Singh Dalip Ahlawat, (1988). Jaat Veeron ka Itihaas, Village and PO: Dighal, Dist. Jhajjar.
  • Singh K.S., (1994). People of India – Haryana (Vol. XXIII), Anthropological Survey of India
  • Singh,Gyan and Tyagi(2010). Nirankush Raj Bananm Lokshahi Khap, Tehrik Prakashan,New Delhi.
  • Tiemann, G.A.( 1962). The Jats: An Ethnographic Survey (an unpublished Thesis), St. Catherine College, Oxford, UK
  • Ananthpur, Kripan (2007, Feb. 24). Dynamics of Local Governance in Karnataka, Economic & Political Weekly, Vol. XLII, No. 8, PP 667-673
  • Chowdhry (2005, December, 3-9).Crisis of Masculinity in Haryana: The unmarried, the unemployed and the aged .The Economic & Political Weekly, Volume XL, NO. 49, pp. 5189-5198
  • Yadav Bhupender (2009, Dec. 26). Khap Panchayats: Stealing Freedom, Economic & Political Weekly, Vol. XLIV, No. 52, 16-19
  • Singh Ranbir (2010, May 22) The Need to Tame the Khap Panchayats, Economic & Political Weekly, Vol. XLV, No. 21
  • The Tribune (2010, September 10). Chandigarh.
  • 1. The Bhaichara norm generally becomes the bone of contention when the specific gotra belongs to majority of the village inhabitants. In addition, the gotras of those ancestors are also considered the same and identical, who had harmonious and friendly relationship in the past. These ancestors are/were/have been bhais (brothers) on the basis of customs of marriage or social intimacy or by ritual of dharambhai (brother by religion) or by common place of residence or common village of residence of ancestors
  • 2. There is no authentic exact document revealing the exact number of Jat gotras. In Jat Privesh magazine (Karnal, Haryana) January 2011 Issue, a list is given which show 3179 gotras whereas, in India Today (New Delhi) May 24, 2010 issue, 4830 gotras are counted, yet more are to be explored, p. 34.
  • 3. Many spellings of the Gotra names that appear here may look erroneous but are as original as depicted by Ibbetson in his Book – Punjab Castes.
  • 4. The gotra viewed as an impediment to harness the energy of the Khap system towards complete democratization of the incidental set up in the light of the provisions of the Constitution of India).
  • 5. The other issues requiring immediate attention include adultery, equity, scientific enquiry and temperament, gender issues, female foeticide, domestic violence, women and child health, malnutrition, environmental health and hygiene and preservation/ conservation of the symbols of our common culture and heritage

11. Financial Assistance Required [In Rupees (I.N.R)]

A. Equipment and services
(1) Books and Journals ..... 50,000.00
(2) Equipment
(a) Desktop (One piece) ..... 40,000.00
(c) UPS –One piece ...... 1800,00
(d) All in One (copy, print, scan etc.)-One piece..... 11,000.00
(e) Data Card (4 GBX4) ..... 3,000.00

(f) Pen Drives (4 GB X 2)..... 800.00 (g) Digital Camera (1 pc.)..... 20000.00

Total..... 76600.00
(3) Salary
(a) Project Associate (Rs.9600 x 36months).... 3, 45,600.00
(b) Hiring and Technical Services
(i) Data Entry Operator (Contract basis) @ Rs.6000/- p.m. 72,000.00
(ii) Field Investigators (two) on Per Diem basis for expedition on field work (@Rs. 500/-X2X180 days) .... 1,80,000.00
(iii) Honorarium to Linguists for deciphering Urdu/Arabic record at village Shoram (UP) (Negotiable remuneration) ....5, 000.00
Total: 7,29,200.00

B. Recurring Expenses

Travel and Field Work
Visit base = 6-7 days
No. of visits = 36
Per visit expenditure
Area covered : Haryana, UP, Rajasthan, Delhi Dehat
Minimum distance : 250 km up and down
Maximum distance : 1000 km up and down
Average distance : 750 km up and down
Total Transportation Expenses @ Rs. 10/- per km 7,500
Boarding and Lodging Expenses @ Rs. 1000/- per day 7,000
Total Expenditure per visit 14,500
1. Total of all :visits 5,22,000
2. Institutional Overhead Approval Recurring Gant 60,000
3. Contingency 50,000
Total of Recurring expenses 6,32,000

Gross total (Fixed and Recurring) 13,612,00.00

12. Whether the teacher has received support for the research project from the UGC under Major, Minor, scheme of support for research of from any agency? NO
13. Details of the project/scheme completed or ongoing with P.I NO
14. Any other information which investigator may like to give in support of this proposal which may be helpful in valuating. NA
To certify that:
(a) The University is approved under Section 2(f) and 12-B of UGC Act and is fit to receive grants from the UGC.
(b) General physical facilities, such as furniture/space atc. are available in the Department.
(c) We shall abide by the rules governing the scheme in case assistance is provided to us from the UGC for the above project.
(d) We shall complete the project within the stipulated period. If we fail to do so and if the UGC is not satisfied with the progress of the research project, the Commission may terminate the project immediately and ask for the refund of amount received by us.
(e) The above Research Project is not funded by any other agency.
Name and Signature:
Principal Investigator : Rajkumar Siwach
Co-Investigator: Sultan Singh
Registrar: Manoj Siwach
(Signature with Seal)


List of Books and Papers Published during the last five years

A. Book

1. Soochna Ka Adhikar Adhiniyam, 2005 aur Pardarshi Shasan Tantra, Central Law Publications, Allahabad, 2010

B. Papers

1. Child Development Services Through I.C.D. S.: An Analysis of Rural Health Issues in Haryana, Kurukshetra, February, 2010, pp. 3-17.
2. Revamping District Administration in Haryana : A Discourse Analysis, Management in Government , New Delhi: Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances, Government of India, vol. xxxi, no. 1-2 January –December 2009, pp.,53-62.
3. Functioning of State Information Commission Haryana: A Critique, Prashasnika: A journal of Administrative Processes, Jaipur: The HCM Rajasthan Institute of Public Administration, Vol, XXXVI, No.1-2, January-December, 2009, pp.94-112.
4. Role of IT in District Administration :A Case Study of Sirsa District, In Chahar , S.S. (ed.) District Administration in India in the Era of Globalization, Concept Publishing Company, New Delhi, 2009, pp. ,327-352.
5. Implementation of NREGS in Haryana : A study of Social Audit (Joint), Kurukshetra, April, 2009
6. Gaon Ke Sandarbh Me Suchna Ka Adhikar (Joint) (Hindi), Kurukshetra, April, 2009
7. Evolving Capacity Building Strategies of NGOs for Financial Sustainability, Indian Journal of Social Work, Vol. 70, Issue 3. July-September, 2009, pp. 467-486.
8. Shasan Mein Media ki Bhoomika, Sanchar Shree ,An International Bi-lingual Journal of Mass Communication, Dept. of Journalism and Mass Communication, Lucknow University, Lucknow, Vol. 29,April-June 2008.
9. Women's Empowerment through NGO at the Grassroots Level in Haryana: A Case Study, Indian Journal of Regional Science, Kolkata, Vol.XXXX, No. 2, 2008, pp.111-122.
10. The Symbiosis between the Panchayats and Human Rights: Rhetoric and Reality, Local Government Quarterly, July-September 2007. Vol. LXXVII, No. 3, pp 5-11.
11. Implications of Economic Reforms for Democracy in India, Indian Journal of Politics, Vol. XLI, No. 1 and 2, January-June, 2007, pp. 203-220.
12. Interlinking of Rivers for Geo-Economic Change: A Discourse, Research Hunt, An International Multi Disciplinary Journal, Vol. I, Issue II, Nov.-Dec. 2006, Bhopal, pp. 65-72
13. Capacity Building of Panchayati Raj Institutions for Rural Development: Role of NGOs, in, Surat Singh & Mohinder Singh, Rural Development Administration in 21st Century: A Multi-Dimensional Study, Deep & Deep Publications, 2006, pp. 409-419.
14. The National Rural Employment Guarantee Act, 2005: Tasks Ahead, In Nizami (ed.), Nehru's Socio-Economic Ideas and Globalization, Icon publishers, New Delhi, 2006


Justification of Financial Assistance

The amount referred for books and journals shall be used for procuring classical as well as rare books and scholastic articles appeared in the journals/magazines of various disciplines pertaining to the research problem. The actual cost of these books as compared with the present price may be low but the cost to lay our hands to these may be higher.

For equipments, it is clarified that the PI, so far, is not using any equipment of the university for the research purpose .The All in One is proposed to collect information from distant places where the record is kept by any person /institution in form of letters ,diaries, memorials and written notes etc. The Digital Camera is required to record lively debate and discussion of the Khap Panchayats that may happen during the field visits. It shall enhance the scientific validity of the documents cited in the thesis.

The requirement of Project Associate and Data Entry Operator is already justified in the Guidelines. With regard to Field Investigators, it is submitted that the proposed study is the empirical one. This necessitates the vital role of Field Investigators for filling up questionnaire/ schedules from the respondents. The shown amount is tentative and varies as per the circumstances. The services of the Linguists are required for deciphering the historical royal letters and correspondence written in Urdu and Arabic language by the then Kings/Rajas which are kept in the archives at the village Shoran (UP). As no scientific and valid study has been undertaken in the specific area of the proposed project, resulting in the lacking of secondary sources of the data, so, it becomes imperative to organize field visits to elicit opinion and information from the respondents as shown in the sampling process. The PI, CI and Project Associate and Field Investigators shall collect first hand information from the sampling places and epicenters of Khap Panchayats. These sampling places fall in various villages of Haryana, UP, Rajasthan and Delhi, which by large, cover 8 districts of Haryana,6 districts of UP,4 districts of Rajasthan and few places NCR Delhi. The number of visits is not exhaustive but merely suggestive, which may vary as per the ground reality and nature of research problem. Besides, the amount incurred on fare to visit Institutes as shown in the proposal vide No. (vi )entitled Collaboration and Consultation excluded in the estimates. The PI shall make every effort to spend the funds in compliances with the sound principles of the financial property and guidelines, rules and regulations of the U.G.C.

Brief khap questionnaire

File:Brief khap questionnaire common.pdf