The caste system in India has went through many changes and is still persisting by adapting itself to changing socio-economic and political conditions. Comment.
Caste is a hierarchical institutional arrangement and a hereditary, endogamous occupational group. It is a unique social institution of Indian subcontinent. The traditional caste system was based on the concept of purity and pollution, but its manifestations have changed by adapting to changing socio-economic and political conditions.
Changes in caste system:
- Political reasons
- Political mobilization based on caste are rising. E.g. BSP.
- Lingayats demanding to be considered as a minority community.
- Economic reasons:
- Developmental policies benefitted only a few and they emerged as elites, while others remained backward. This created subdivisions within backward communities.
- Caste based trader organizations, such as Dalit Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DICCI).
- Social reasons:
- Inter caste marriages are increasing but still intra caste marriage through various matrimonial advertisements are frequent in print media. E.g. kayastha matrimonial.
- Caste based reservations in jobs, education, legislative seats, etc.
Thus, caste system in India is still persisting with newer manifestations and adaptations to changing situations in the society.