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The Vokkaligas () are an Indian caste or social group found mainly in the Old Mysore Region of southern Karnataka state. In Tamil Nadu they are known as Okkaligar and use Gowder as a title. The Vokkaliga belong to the Vaisya (cultivator) varna in Hinduism, sometimes classified as satvic.


Vokkalathana in Kannada language means tilling land and Vokkaliga means one who tills land. Alternate etymologies include the work vokku ("to thresh grain out of the ear stocks").

People belonging to Vokkaliga community are known as Okkaliga of Utkala Kingdom. Many more people of different communities use Gowda as surname. Vokkaliga have names such as Gowda, Gowder, Gounder, Reddy, Rao, Naidu and Naicker as the title after their name in the States of Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu and these names are being used in the modern time to identify the group to which a person belongs

A Gowda, also spelled Gowdaru or Gauda or Nayaka (=Head/Chief) is not a name of any caste. Gowda is a leader of a group or head of territory. The Gowdas claim to be landlords and village head men and are known to be the dominant and powerful person in the community in the past, and times have changed and now...
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