Farmers ranked just after the ruling samurai class because they produced the food that everyone else depended upon.
Thus, though the two systems seem quite similar, the beliefs from which they arose were rather different.
India's caste system arose out of the Hindu belief in reincarnation.
A soul's behavior in its previous life determined the status it would have in its next life.
In the Indian caste system, however, merchants and land-holding farmers were lumped together in the Vaisya caste, which was the third of the four or primary castes.In the Indian system, the four primary castes are: Brahmins, or Hindu priests; Kshatriyas, the kings and warriors; Vaisyas, or farmers, traders and skilled artisans; and Shudras, tenant farmers and servants.