Degree of kinship refers to the degree of closeness one has to different relatives. Normally, consanguenial kins are more closely related to each other than affinal kins.
There are mainly three basic degrees into which the kins can be classified :
Primary kins: Some relatives are near, close and direct. They are known as primary kin. According to Dubey, they are eight in number, viz., father-son, husband-wife, mother-daughter, father-daughter, mother-son, younger-elder sisters, younger-elder brothers and sister-brother. They can be classified more minutely into primary consanguineous kin or primary affinal kin.
For example: Ego’s father is Ego’s primary consanguineous kin, whereas Ego’s wife is Ego s primary affinal kin.
Secondary kins: They are primary kin of primary kin. In other words, they are related through primary kin. They are not our primary kin but are the primary kin of our primary kin, hence our secondary kin.
For example, father’s brother (chacha), sister’s husband (bahnoi) are secondary kin. The father is my primary kin and his brother is the primary kin of father. Therefore, father’s brother is my secondary kin, the primary kin of primary kin. Similarly, sister is may primary kin but her husband is my secondary kin.
Tertiary kins: They are the secondary kin of our primary kin or primary kin of our secondary kin .Thus the wife of brother-in- law(sala) called sarhaj in Hindi is tertiary kin because brother-in- law is my secondary kin and his wife is the primary kin of brother-in¬law. Similarly the brother-in-law of my brother is my tertiary kin because the brother is my primary kin and his brother-in-law is the secondary kin of my brother.