Chak de phatte

June 19, 2008

I’ve always wondered what it actually means, but never got around to asking anyone. Then, I came across a few explanations at Devraj’s blog :

Chak de phatte
… this first one from the Urban Dictionary :

Chak De Phatte -though loosely translated as pick up the floorboards is more of a war cry than a housekeeping call. The origins of the phrase lie in the times when the Khalsa i.e. the original warrior Sikhs were formed, they would cross canals and attack Mughal camps in a blitzkrieg attack and then just as they came would retreat leaving the enemy helpless. The sport of tent pegging also evolved from this camp raiding where the riders would remove the pegs of the tents trapping the occupants under, what then used to be a very heavy fabric. While escaping back to their base the Khalsa warriors would dismantle any temporary bridges constructed by them(made out of ‘Phatte’) to prevent the Mughals from chasing them and sometimes to prevent the enemy from escaping, hence the cry ‘Chak De Phatte’. The phrase then acquired the meaning: to complete the route. And is now used as in the figure of ‘Bring the house down!’.

Chak De Again
Think I’ll take Sidhu’s word for it (in this case, he may actually know what he’s talking about):

The intricate meaning of the word is Chak De Phatte, Nap De Killi. Killi is a small lever that you pull. And when you pull it, the water starts gushing into the fields through a motor. Now that Killi is always invariably hidden under a well. And that well is covered by wooden planks. So you lift the phatta, i.e. Chak De Phatta, and then you pull the killi. And then the water starts flowing, gushing into the fields. So it’s got everything to do with positivity,’ said Navjot Singh Sidhu, former Indian cricket player.
And a third, which attributes the origin to bhangra bands in the UK:

‘Phatte’ is also synonymous with wooden floor boards. So when desi bands in the UK needed a cool phrase to hook their music (bhangra) on, they used a literal translation of ‘beat up the floor boards’ or chak de phatte.

(these are excerpts, I suggest you head over to Dick & Garlick and check out the post, and a lot more)


4 Responses to “Chak de phatte”

  1. V Says:

    aaj aapke dwara kaphi gyan mila… mein kritarth hoon…

  2. Ghazala Khan Says:

    Interview Request

    Hello Dear and Respected,
    I hope you are fine and carrying on the great work you have been doing for the Internet surfers. I am Ghazala Khan from The Pakistani Spectator (TPS), We at TPS throw a candid look on everything happening in and for Pakistan in the world. We are trying to contribute our humble share in the webosphere. Our aim is to foster peace, progress and harmony with passion.

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    Ghazala Khan
    The Pakistani Spectator

  3. astralwicks Says:

    gudus has arrived. did he go anywhere?

  4. gudus Says:

    he he think they got the wrong guy, or maybe its something to do with the bhuna gosht recipe…still wondering if I should accept the interview…did a google, both ghazala and the interview are legit, there’s a series up on pakspectator with quite a few bloggers…hi ghazala, if you reading this, give me a day or so to reply…thanks

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