Jatt! "What is a Jatt?" Jatt is a caste that is present predominantly in the state of Punjab in both India and Pakistan. Jatts are typically people who own zameen ( land) and partake in agricultural endeavors . Jatts are people that are known for their masculinity and fearlessness. Jatts can also be called Kharkoos. This is a term that describes an individual who does kharaak, "loud sound that can startle and scare , " others (Sevea, 2014, page 134). Also " ( …the code of masculinity, encapsulated by kharaak includes qualities such as ability to bear and use weapons, outdo one's enemy in loud oratorical exchanges and, and most importantly, take revenge , " ) (Sevea, 2014, page 135). With this being mentioned, Punjabi Film typically includes a character that is of the Jatt caste . This character that is a Jatt , adds to the films , as well as relates to a majority Punjabi audience. From the article , "Kharaak Kita Oi," by Iqbal Sevea, he mentions examples of Pakistani Punjabi Film and how they focus on the protagonist being of the Jatt caste . He goes in to detail using films such as Maula Jatt and Weshi Jatt to reflect the masculinity and power of a Jatt .
Jatts are people that typical ly show dominance over subordinate castes, but also to people of their own caste . For example, in the film Chann Pardesi , Jagirdar ( Joginder Singh) a wealthy Jatt shows his power by handing over zameen ( land ) to Nek a worker in his fields who also belongs to the Jatt caste, for raping his future wife. Jagirdar demonstrated that he had the ability to resolve is unforgiving mistake by buying out the other Jatt because he had more money and land . So lat er on in the film when Nek found out the truth about the zameen ( land) and how his son was not his own blood, he left. He left the village as he showed his pride was worth more than the land he was given . Most Jatt people, especially men place their pride on the highest pedestal and will go to extreme lengths to restore it i f lost or played with . Also within this movie, Nek is portrayed as a kharkoo as he tries to take revenge on Jagirdar. Nek comes back "riding horses and firing guns," (Sevea, 2014, page 135), and does gain his pride back.
Another key quality besides Jatts' being Kharkoos and seeking revenge is that they like to protect their women's izzat ( honor). Izzat is usually determined by how the women of the family are treated by others. Usually a women's izzat is tainted if some man tried to take away her purity. With this being said, Jatts protect their women like expensive diamonds . So if a woman's izzat was at stake a Jatt would try his hardest to protect it. In Putt Jattan De, the opening scene showed a women being chased by a guying who was trying to harass her. Then Jagga Jatt comes to her rescue and basically says that the bad guy would have to go through him to get to the girl. The Jatt shows his masculinity and how he will do anything to keep her safe.
Overall, Jatts are known as people who possess hegemonic qualities. They have this dominance and attitude to them that can be spotted by those who are not of the Jatt caste. Many individuals are compared to Jatts and this is also said by Sevea whe n he says, "…the value of other caste groups [is] judged on the basis of their likeliness to Jatts," (Sevea, 2014, page137). As previously said the likeliness of a Jatt is the masculinity, fearfulness and the ‘kharkoo' quality they possess that the rest of the others are being compared to. In Punjabi Films, Jatts a re a key part as they typically play the protagonist and other lead roles. This has been seen through all of the films presented in class so far.




References:
Sevea, Iqbal. ""Kharaak Kita Oi!": Masculinity, Caste, and Gender in Punjabi Films."  BioScope: South Asian Screen Studies