Jat Gil (Muslim traditions) in Pakistan


Population
Main Language
Largest Religion
Christian
Evangelical
Progress
Progress Gauge
* From latest Pakistan census data.
Current Christian values may substantially differ.

Introduction / History

Gil is a prominent Muslim Jat gotra (clan or lineage). There are different opinions as to the origin of the Jats, but most seem to recognize them to be from Indo-Aryan tribes native to the Punjab region that straddles modern Pakistan and India. There is a theory suggesting that they may be the predecessors of Gypsies. They probably reached Egypt with the Muslim conquerors, lived in Afghanistan before the Muslims, and invaded China with the Mongol Army. They also proved to be a threat to Tamarlane in Persia and Uzbekistan in the 1400s.

There are very few records concerning Jats prior to the 1600s. They rose to prominence following the 1669 Jat uprising against Mughal rule, and they ruled various princely states throughout the 18th century. For centuries the Jat lifestyle was designed to foster a martial spirit. Whenever they lost their kingdoms, Jat people became landlords who were ready to defend their land against any invaders.

After 1858, under the British Raj, the Jats were known for their service in the Indian Army, being categorized as a "martial race" by the British. For a couple hundred years Jats were a force that could not be ignored by South Asians or British imperialists.


Where Are they Located?

Muslim Jat communities are usually from Pakistan's Punjab Province, but they can also live in other provinces as well. Gil Jats are also found in five of Indian's northern states.


What Are Their Lives Like?

Muslim Gil Jats have a very good self-image. "Men may come and men may go, but I go on forever," is a well-known Jat proverb. They are brave, hardworking people who possess both the desire and ability to rule. It has been said that no Jat wants to be ruled. Rather, he desires to have power over a group if not over an area. They take great pride in their ancestry. In fact, all the Jats in a particular village consider themselves to be the descendants of the man whom they believe founded it by the power of the sword.

Conservative by nature, the Jats rarely marry people from other people groups. From about 1650 AD onwards marrying within same clan became more common. The modern-day litmus test that Jat people use in marriage is if the girl and boy must not have the same great-great-grandparents (not related for four generations). If they are from the same clan but are not directly related for four generations then it is considered acceptable for them to marry.
Physically, the Gil Jats are usually taller and heavier than most of their neighbors. Because of their larger build, their reputation for violence, and the fact that they control much of the land and village income, they are generally feared by other communities.

Most Jats live in rural areas, and they are usually landowners. A small percentage are traders and laborers. Today, the Jats are well read, and some occupy high positions in academic and technical arenas.


What Are Their Beliefs?

Though Jats were all originally Hindu, some Jat clans like the Gils converted to Islam. Most of these Islamic Jats trace their conversion to Sufi saints like Baba Fariduddin Ganjshakar in the 12th century. Muslim Jats have their own culture, which includes poems, songs, and stories of romance.

Though the Muslim Jats are Sunnis, they are known to have a strong tradition of worshiping many local saints. Jats observe many ceremonies, especially rites of passage such as circumcision and initiation into adulthood. Like other South Asian communities of good standing, Muslim Jats have a negative view of Christianity, because it is associated with people of low status and caste.


What Are Their Needs?

Many Jat communities need clean drinking water and proper health care facilities. Christian medical teams and humanitarian aid workers are needed to work among them and show them God's love in practical ways.

Missionaries, Christian broadcasts, and evangelistic literature are needed to effectively reach the Jats with the light of the gospel. Most importantly, they need people who will begin to intercede for them, tearing down the strongholds that are keeping them in spiritual bondage. Only then will their hearts be prepared to receive the good news as it is presented to them.


Prayer Points

* Scripture Prayers for the Jat Gil (Muslim traditions) in Pakistan.

* Ask the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers to work among the Muslim Gil Jats.
* Pray that Christian doctors, nurses, and humanitarian aid workers will have opportunities to share the love of Jesus with the Gil Jats.
* Ask God to save key Jat leaders who will boldly proclaim the gospel to their own people.
* Pray that churches and mission organizations will accept the challenge of adopting and reaching the Gil Jats.
* Ask God to raise up teams of intercessors who will faithfully stand in the gap for the Jats.
* Pray for a disciple making movement to emerge among every Jat clan and community.


References

https://joshuaproject.net/people_groups/19862/PK
https://www.jatland.com/home/Gill
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jat_people
http://www.dawn.com/news/1077113
https://www.britannica.com/topic/Jat
https://www.jatland.com/home/Jats
http://www.globalprayerdigest.org/index.php/issue/day/Gill-Jat-People/
https://joshuaproject.net/people_groups/12329/IN
https://joshuaproject.net/people_groups/18777/IN
https://joshuaproject.net/people_groups/17571/IN
https://www.jatland.com/home/Jats#Life_and_culture_of_Jat_People
https://www.facebook.com/JuttWelfareAssociationvahari/posts/409390069112769


Profile Source:   Keith Carey  

People Name General Jat Gil (Muslim traditions)
People Name in Country Jat Gil (Muslim traditions)
Pronunciation jot gill
Population this Country 319,000
Population all Countries 321,000
Total Countries 2
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group Yes
Pioneer Workers Needed 6
Alternate Names जाट, गिल (मुस्लिम ट्रेडिशन्स)
People ID 19862
ROP3 Code 115876
Country Pakistan
Region Asia, South
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 5  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States on file 6
Largest States
Sindh
202,000
Punjab
85,000
Azad Kashmir
22,000
Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa
8,500
Balochistan
900
Islamabad
600
Specialized Website South Asia Peoples
Country Pakistan
Region Asia, South
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 5  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States 6
  Sindh 202,000
  Punjab 85,000
  Azad Kashmir 22,000
  Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa 8,500
  Balochistan 900
  Islamabad 600
Website South Asia Peoples
Primary Language Sindhi (160,000 speakers)
Language Code snd   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 12
Secondary Languages
Punjabi, Western
97,000
Urdu
79,000
Saraiki
34,000
Pahari-Potwari
16,000
Dhatki
8,700
Hindko, Northern
4,400
Marwari
3,400
Hindko, Southern
2,600
Balochi, Western
200
Pashto, Northern
200
Balochi, Eastern
80
Primary Language Sindhi (160,000 speakers)
Language Code snd   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 12
Secondary Languages
  Punjabi, Western 97,000
  Urdu 79,000
  Saraiki 34,000
  Pahari-Potwari 16,000
  Dhatki 8,700
  Hindko, Northern 4,400
  Marwari 3,400
  Hindko, Southern 2,600
  Balochi, Western 200
  Pashto, Northern 200
  Balochi, Eastern 80
People Groups Speaking Sindhi

Primary Language:  Sindhi

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1825-1981)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (1890-1992)
Bible-Complete Yes  (1954)
Bible-NT Audio Online
Bible-NT Text Online
Possible Print Bibles
Amazon
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching (GRN)
Audio Recordings Online New Testament (FCBH)
Audio Recordings Oral Bible
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio (Jesus Film Project)
Film / Video Indigitube.tv Video / Animation
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Sindhi
Film / Video Magdalena (Jesus Film Project)
Film / Video The Hope Video
Film / Video The Prophets' Story
General Gospel website in this language
General Got Questions Ministry
Mobile App Download audio Bible app as APK file from FCBH
Text / Printed Matter Bible: Common Language New Testament
Text / Printed Matter Online Bible text (Scripture Earth)
Text / Printed Matter World Missionary Press Booklets
Primary Religion: Islam
Major Religion Percent *
Buddhism
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.00 %)
0.00 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
Hinduism
0.00 %
Islam
100.00 %
Non-Religious
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
Unknown
0.00 %
* From latest Pakistan census data.
Current Christian values may substantially differ.
Map Source People Group data: Omid. Map geography: UNESCO / GMI. Map Design: Joshua Project  
Profile Source Keith Carey  
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Read more


Avatar

Welcome. I’m a virtual assistant and will try to answer questions about Joshua Project, unreached people groups, the Great Commission and more. How can I help you?

For further help try our FAQ, Definitions or Contact Us pages.