The Hindu Jajmani System: A Socio-Economic System

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Jajmani system can be defined as an Indian social system in which upper caste and lower caste people interact in an economic system where lower caste performed various works for upper caste and in return get paid in terms of grains. The term Jajmani is derived from the term ‘Yajman’ which is a Vedic term meaning a patron who employs the services of a Brahmin for performing sacrifices and other religious ceremonies. But the major basis of the system is caste. The concept of Jajmani system was first brought in to light on papers by William H. Wiser in 1936 in his book titled “The Hindu Jajmani System: A Socio-economic System Interrelating Members of a Hindu Village Community in Services” where he described in detail how different caste group interact with each other in the production and exchange of goods and services. If we look into the history of India, the caste system has very unique features and position in Indian society. The caste system is more deeply rooted in the rural Indian society than the urban Indian society. In each and every caste, the customs, the traditions and rules differ as per their own terms of history. Each caste has a specialised occupation.…show more content…
This is because the Priests’ services are needed during the performance of religious rituals, and later they are provided with the social support by their Jajmans and also get financial benefits sometimes for their services from jajmans. The priests, who provide services to the jajmans, also need the services from people of other castes. “In such situations, the lower castes make their own Jajmani arrangements either through direct exchange of labour or by paying in cash or kind. The middle castes also loke the lower castes, either subscribe to each others’ services in turn for compensation and payments or exchange of services with one another.” (Gould,

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