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Class Division in Pattni Samaj

Divisions in Pattni Samaj

It’s nice to see that our Pattni Community is progressing but at same time please think about one important issue.
It is very unfortunate that our community have too many divisions. We have the rich, the middle and the poor. It is very important to ask one important question that when a craftsman makes some jewellery and goes to so call our own people to sell. What really then happens?

The answer is “ooh!!! We can get it cheaper”!!

So fair enough, he would go to sell to some other jeweller from other cast. Here that jeweller would receive a friendly welcome.

He would say “oh come come. It’s nice to see you. The craftsman gets the asking price and also gets the respect.
So what are Pattnis supposed to do? The Pattni craftsmen have no choice but to trade with other caste.

How fascinating to see that when an outsider comes to a Pattni jeweller sells 14ct gold as 22ct and gives it our people, he will gladly take it and also say a big thank you as well.

Let me give a small example: - 100gms - 100days - £100. That makes 1 pound per day i.e. 85 rupees per day. By the way that is what a beggar in India can get in a day!! When we go to the hair dresser, we bow down, say thank you as well and pay the asking price - not your price is it?

We talk about progress which is very nice. However Mr. Pattni Samaj, think where we are heading. I am fully aware that some one will answer to this and argue that my views are wrong. Am I really?

By the way it is good to see our younger generation progressing. They are doing well in various other fields. Good luck to all of them. So all our young ones - keep it going. At least you guys will progress.

God Bless You All.

From Editor:-

Dear Vasantbhai
Thank you for your mail.

It is quite evident that your mail is full of passion and sincerity. However it is the Editor’s duty to edit any mails received for the website and make it more presentable without offending anyone. That is the only way one can get their message across positively. I hope you will agree with this edited version of your mail.

You made some sweeping statements - on the website, Pattni Samaj and the jewellery business all rolled into one. I have tried to respond on each issue separately so that we all have a clear understanding of each issue. Following are my comments…..


Re: Progress and Class Division in Pattni Samaj

The Progress of Pattni Connection (PC) website:-

The main idea behind creating this website was to start a mode of communication. Several websites were launched by Pattni Samajs, Associations and individuals in the past which unfortunately were discontinued due to various reasons.

Initially our idea was to start a small site for a small group of Pattni friends so that we can all communicate amongst each other. PC’s design, launch and also the finance was an individual effort. We have not asked for any funds for this website from our Samaj.
The news of the website spread and became an instant success. Many members came forward to support the site. It was then that we realised that PC can play an important role to serve our Samaj. The rest is now history. We put in countless hours in launching and maintaining this site. This is a genuine effort to selflessly serve our Samaj and dedicated the site to our Pattni Community.
Who Owns the Pattni Connection website?
It belongs to you – the Pattni Members, Pattni Samajs and the Pattni Associations.
It doesn’t belong to any individual. It belongs to you all.
So Vasantbhai, surely this is called Progress in our community. Is it not?

Future of our PC website
It is our intention to carry on serving. However if a Pattni Samaj or Associations anywhere in the world feels this website as a Private Enterprise and would like to launch an “Official” Samaj website, then our philosophy is quite simple

No matter what, our Samaj should always come first. Committee Members will come and go. I was also once a committee member but now am an ordinary member. However all our Pattni Associations and Samajs are the lifeline and the backbone of our community.

So to all of us at Pattni Connection website, for the sake of our Samaj and in order to give an opportunity for the “Official Site” to grow, we would not hesitate to back down even if we have to either ‘freeze’ or shut down this successful website and bow out gracefully. However if and when this situation arises, we shall surely consult with all our volunteers, leaders and the Samaj Committee members before making a final decision.

Re: Re: Progress and Class Division in Pattni Samaj

Pattni Samaj and the Jewellery Business

It would very unfair to blame our entire Samaj for any difficulties we face in the Jewellery business. Pattni Samaj consists of ALL members – the majority of the members in the UK, USA and many other countries are not even in the jewellery trade.

So to blame the entire Samaj is unfair. If a comment is against the jewellers then it should be directed to them rather than blaming the whole Pattni Samaj.

Jewellery Business:

Some of your points mentioned may be valid that we sometimes don’t support our own Pattni brothers in the business and prefer to deal with outsiders. This topic has been discussed many times in the Parajiya magazines published in India.

I would invite members for their views. Please let this discussion be positive.

Re: We lost our trade

Dear Editor
I shall be grateful if you can publish my letter unanimously. By disclosing my name I’ll loose my job, whatever the little work get will stop and will also be criticized for my comments.

I would also like to refer about those smaller people, karigars who make and supply jewellery to the shops. Let me try and put it little bit differently. Say for example if no one was making these lovely items around the world what will the shop keepers display? May be they themselves perhaps!!

Yes I do understand that business all over the world try to get items cheaper because they want to make money. That’s why they are in that line.

The thinking they see is :- the small craftsmen does not need to eat, no need for clothes, no need for housing, no need for a car, no need to pay for gas, electric and water, petrol, insurance tax and no need to feed their children……. because they only have to eat 1gm of gold to live on. It’s because we are treated like illiterates. This is how we feel within our community just because we do not have anything big to show off.

However at same time we want to be part of this community. We are one community and are interrelated and connected one way or the other by marriages and so on. Since we are all related in many ways then why I feel that unfair advantage is taken of these small crafts people and also looked upon with some bitterness?

It will be the Pattni jewellers who will be better off themselves by supporting the small workers and encouraging them. That’s the way to progress by helping each other to achieve the goal... but in today’s society like ours who cares..............

I did not wish to write this e-mail but it does hurt to see this happening. I hope I did not bored you from all this.

When this Pattni Connection website was launched I felt at last we Pattnis have something going here. And believe me it is.

I asked one young man if he would be interested in developing this site and to make it more appealing, He started laughing and made me laugh as well until we both had tears in our eyes then he said, “Sir these Sonis can’t even afford to pay 2.00 paisa for the work you do, how are they going to afford my fees........??”

You work for almost nothing why should I do the same? They go to a bar and spend 300 and go for entertainment spend 3000 but when you go to sell your jewellery they wont even pay you 1 paisa more,,, so I am sorry sir with respect.........I feel sorry for you Sonis. Really it’s a shame but life must go on...”

Well, he is right. We lost our trade and our special language that we had as well. By the way the person putting these comments forward is 85 years old and been in trade since he was 12 ........

(Name supplied to the Editor)