ISBN: 8176295132 Publisher:Deep & Deep Book Format: Hard Bound No. of Volumes: 1 Language: English Physical Description: xviii+189 pages Year of Publication: 2004
The bane of the caste system has been the hierarchical stratification of the privileges and ritual statuses which were totally ascribed. While the higher castes enjoyed higher ritual status, socio-economic privileges, education and learning, the lower castes were deprived of all good things in life. The subsequent scriptures including the Puranas, Geeta and Manu's Dharmashastra rationalized all such inequalities attributing them to Karma. The rigidity of the caste structure and its attendant ramification of socio-economic inequality are based on the endogamy that is practiced which ensures privileges to higher castes on a permanent basis. The privileges that once enjoyed by higher castes are preserved to their progeny through inheritance, while handicaps are sustained by the lower castes on a permanent basis. The privatization and globalization processes are making the situation more alarming by further widening the gap between the haves and the have nots, the terms that could be generally substituted for upper and lower castes. The only way out is to sensitize the lower castes of their miserable plight and to enlighten them about paths and possibilities of their redemption. The post-independent Indian state too had undertaken many ameliorative programmes but the caste still remains a massive deadweight on the Indian society obstructing the birth of a new humanity informed by equality, freedom and fraternity. In this book a number of scholars have put forward their ideas and reflections on how to eradicate the caste and to facilitate the birth of a new humanitarian social order.