As the majority of its population is rural, village
is the unit that determines the social and economic set up of the Punjab.
Every village is linked in one way of another with the adjoining villages.
Agriculture being the main occupation of the people,
their economic dependence upon each other mainly pertains to their agricultural
activities. All of them carpenters, blacksmiths, oilmen, sweepers and
others invest their interests in agriculture. Carpenters and blacksmiths
make and repair agricultural implements for the farmers. Labourers lend
a hand at harvesting and in return get wages. Similarly, barbers, water-carriers,
cobblers, potters and all others earn their living by serving the farmer
in one way or another.
Many villages have grown up in the middle of large
fields. A village in the Punjab generally springs up on the land of an
ancestor, his offspring forming the nucleus. Many villages of Majha are
divided into pattis, and each member of a patti is said to have descended
from a common ancestor. In some villages each patti has its separate Panchayat
to sort out is quarrels and bring about reconciliation. But in case of
interpatti disputes, the Panchayat of the main village decides the issues.
Working classes like Labourers and backward classes
like sweepers live in mud houses on the out skirts of the village, or
in some remote corners. The artisans and craftsmen like, carpenters,
blacksmiths, cobblers etc. have their own separate locality.
Although the villages of Punjab are inhabited
by different castes and creeds, the people of one village do not marry
into the same and in this respect each village in an exogamous unit. matrimonial
relations are transacted in nearly villages only. If a distant village
has to be chosen, it must be of the same geographical strip. In the urban
there is no such consideration.