Democratic Politics (NTSE/Olympiad)  

4. Gender, Religion and Caste

Caste and Politics

Caste and Politics
Caste and politics, have both positive and the negative aspects. Caste division is special to India. In most societies. Occupations are passed on from one generation to another. Caste system is an extreme form of this.
The hereditary occupational division was sanctioned by rituals. Members of the same caste group practiced the same occupation, married within the caste group and did not eat with members from other caste groups.
Caste system was based on discrimination against the ‘outcaste’ groups. They were subjected to the inhuman practice of untouchability political leaders and social reformers like Jotiba Phule, Gandhiji, B.R. Ambedkar and Periyar Ramaswami Naicker advocated and worked to establish a society in which caste inequalities are absent.

Caste system in modern India have undergone great changes due to -
1. Economic development and large scale URBANISATION.
2. Growth of literacy and education.
4. The weakening of the position of landlords in the villages. Due to the old notions of CASTE HIERARCHY are breaking down factors.
The Constitution of India prohibited any caste-based discrimination and laid the foundation of policies to reverse the injustices of the caste system.
Caste system has not disappeared from India :
1. Some of the older aspects of caste have persisted.
2. Even now most people marry within their own caste or tribe.
3. Untouchability has not ended completely.
4. Effects of centuries of advantages and disadvantages continue to be felt today.


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