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Paper Topic:

Caste Inequalities in India


For one to fully understand the inequalities in the Indian Caste System , it is first important to have an idea what the Hindu Caste System is . The Hindu Caste System is comparable to class structures in other countries , except that this Indian system has been rigidly enforced and has lasted for two or three thousand years . The caste system was enforced as law throughout the subcontinent until the adoption of the Indian constitution in 1949 , which outlawed the caste system . However , it remains a deeply ingrained social structure

br particularly in rural India

Caste comes from a Portuguese word , and it is often applied inaccurately to different systems of separating layers of society . The caste system grew out of two main strands of thought : The belief that a hierarchical social structure is part of the divine intention for natural and the need to emphasize the importance of ritual purity and impurity

There are four main castes into which everyone was categorized . At the very top were the Brahmins -- the priests , scholars , and philosophers The second highest caste was the Kshatriyas . These were the warriors rulers , and those concerned with the defense and administration of the village or state . Third came the Vaishyas , who were traders , merchants and people involved in agricultural production . The lowest caste was the Shudras -- the laborers and servants for the other castes . Each caste included many hierarchical subcastes divided by occupation . Below even the Shudras were the Untouchables . These people had no caste at all They performed the most menial of jobs , such as dealing with dead bodies and cleaning toilets . Higher-caste people believed that if they touched one of the caste-less , they would be contaminated and would need to go through cleansing rituals

How were castes determined ? The answer is quite simple . An individual falls into a caste system by birth -- same caste as your parents , and there was almost no way to change it . It is believed by the Hindus that the caste system dictated one 's occupation , choice of spouse , and many other aspects of one 's life

Today , features of the caste system linger throughout Indian society Laws prohibit discrimination based on caste , and the government runs affirmative action programs for lower castes , especially the Untouchables (now called Dalits . But caste continues to play a part in marriages , and some politicians actually campaign for caste-based votes

Many consider the caste system as a bane of the Hindu society for the past hundreds of years . In the Hindu website , it has been noted that , in terms of damage to human progress and suffering , the Hindu caste system did much greater damage for a much longer period to a great many people than the slave system of the western world

According to Aseema Sinha in his work entitled Globalization , Rising Inequality , and New Insecurities in India , India continues to be a country of multiple differences and persistent inequalities . He noted that India 's multilayered diversity and cultural...

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