Caste System

Spread the love

Caste System

There are many theories about the creation of the word ‘caste’. India is the classical country of caste. If seen in context, the word ‘Jati’ of Hindi is derived from the root ‘Jana’ of Sanskrit language, which means ‘to be born’ or ‘to produce’. Thus things having the same quality and religion by birth are called a caste. From this point of view, species exists not only in humans, but also in plants and inert matter. According to another belief, the Portuguese first used the word caste ‘caste’ among Europeans, which is derived from the Portuguese word castra ‘castra’ which means ‘lineage’ or ‘race’. The word ‘cast’ is also closely related to the Latin word castus ‘castus’ which means ‘pure’ or ‘unmixed’. Thus, from the point of view of etymology, caste denotes a class whose basis is lineage or race precision or immiscibility which is completely based on heredity. It is clear that a society is affected by this (caste) system if it is divided into several conflicting groups that are genetically specialized and hierarchically hierarchical – if, in principle, this (system) does not accept new individuals. Neither does it accept blood-mixing nor change of professions. Many scholars have considered caste or varna to be synonymous with each other, but in reality it is not appropriate. Although caste originated through the varna system, there is ample mention of this fact.


Caste: Functions or Merits


The caste system has played a very important role in the protection and promotion of Indian society, however, in the process of development of thousands of years, today this practice has become such a box of defects, which is the demand of the present era. Mere legislative and administrative efforts in this direction will not suffice. As long as the feeling of hatred against the caste system is not developed among the Hindu people through educational development and other measures, then this corrupt practice will not allow our society and nation to unite. When we talk about the benefits of Jati-pratha, we are mostly referring to its ideal nature and form. The notable works by which the caste system has become an object of praise are mainly the following

Personal discipline and protection of honor –

The rules of caste keep a person in discipline and prevent him from doing undesirable and anti-social acts. The undesirable person is excommunicated from the caste. Thus caste performs the function of social control.


Mental security of the members –

The caste system provides mental security to its members. Collective feeling is very powerful in every caste. Caste helps man in difficult situations. On the basis of the collective power of the caste, the individual experiences mental security. Caste provides social status to each individual. One does not have to suffer any mental pain because everything is pre-determined for him. He does not have to get into psychological trouble to decide the path, only by following the fixed path is the ultimate dharma.


Cooperation in the group –

Caste-bandhan has tied a particular group in the thread of unity. In a particular caste group, a person considers himself safe and considers it his duty to be helpful to each other. Caste unity has protected individuals from many crises and has given attention to many welfare works like child welfare, management of caste stipends, caste dharamshalas etc.


Keeping occupational characteristics secret –

In ancient times, the caste used to adopt only a certain occupation and was considered expert in it. No caste used to reveal its commercial secrets to other castes. Business secrets were compulsorily kept secret by the members of the caste. Caste does not want to transfer its special skills to other castes. Along with that, the caste continued to provide free training to its people on the basis of the natural environment for their special occupation.


Determination of social status –

Under the caste-system, a certain social status is determined for a particular community, in which the status of each is ensured in the third level. It is clear from all these actions of caste that the caste system is not due as its model. Unfortunately, all these benefits of the caste system have become a story of the past today. The caste-system created with good motives is in front of us today in a very sick form. The caste system has so many faults in it that we want its eradication. Doctor . In the words of Radhakrishnan, “Unfortunately the same caste-system, which was developed as a means of saving social organization from destruction, is becoming a hindrance in its progress today.”




Protecting Society, Civilization and Culture –

Caste system has protected Hindu society and Hindu culture. Despite various political upheavals, wars and revolutions, Hindu society remained safe because of the caste system and distinct cultural elements remained in the four major divisions of the Hindu caste – Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Shudras. This practice always opposed the change of religion and thus the law and order of food, living, dress, marriage system and other rites were among the castes.

Be safe. The caste system kept the social tradition alive. The foreign invaders won the body of India but they could not win its mind. The caste system did an important job of binding the various communities of Hindu society together. In the words of Farniwal, “The caste-system in India has provided a state of society in which any community, whether it be racial or social or occupational or religious, retains its distinct nature and separate entity as its own. as a co-operative part of the whole society.” According to Joad, the caste-system in its best form was the successful attempt to thread different ideas, different sections of this vast country in one session.


The caste system acted as a branch of the political system –

in ancient times, when there was no state like the state, then due to the caste system, all the people of the society performed their duties and were disciplined. Thus, at that time, castes were only as branches of the political system which gave rise to the belief in the democratic system in the society.


The system of simple division of labor in society –

Hutton has written that due to the caste system, all the functions of Indian society, whether in the private sector or in the public sector, run smoothly and people can do their work according to religious belief or Based on the concept of ‘karma’. The members of the caste assume this and people perform their actions on the basis of religious belief or ‘concept of karma’. The members of the caste assume that as a result of the deeds of their previous birth, they have to take birth in a particular family in this birth and have to do special work. Due to this belief, they keep doing dirty work without any hesitation and often do not think of rebelling against their position in the society. As a result, not only does a person get rid of mental conflict and despair, but social unity and peace also remains. Due to the implementation of the principle of division of labor in the caste system, each caste acquires skill in its particular work. Today, the importance of this work may have decreased, but in the past, due to the division of work, the efficiency of work and business could increase caste-wise. Large unions were formed on the basis of caste system, with the help of which good production was done. Those sanghas used to protect their brothers from outside competition.


Work Smartness, Knowledge and Sustaining Progress –

Due to the caste system, occupational intelligence was easily passed from one generation to another. Before the progress of a generation was in vain, the generation who got that progress used to get it. A carpenter’s son became a skilled carpenter and a weaver’s son became a skilled weaver. Thus, when there was no other means to preserve the growing knowledge, the caste system took care of this knowledge and progress.


Maintaining the purity of superbreeding –

According to Sijbik, the purity of reproduction is not maintained as a result of the end marriage method found in the caste system. But it is difficult to agree with this view because the defects related to inheritance arise due to marriage of different castes. Doctor . A silent function of the caste system has been mentioned by Majumdar and Madan. As a result of endogamy, the number of boys is often higher than that of girls. In this way people get mental peace due to caste system. The boys perform the responsibility of maintaining the continuity of the family and performing religious rituals like Tarpan, Pind Daan etc.


The birth of high quality civic qualities –

the caste system gave birth to the spirit of brotherhood and harmony. Human beings of one caste indulge in roti, beti and hookah-water and help each other when needed. They consider the evil of caste as their evil. Thus the lofty ideas of love, service, sacrifice and democracy were strengthened by the caste system.





Demerits of Caste System

Due to the caste system, rights, undertakings and important works are not encouraged – in the caste system, the impression is inculcated in most of the people that their social status has been determined by birth and no matter how hard they work, they progress in them. It’s hard to be. Due to the caste system, Hindus did not pay attention to various discoveries and important rights, because in their view doing so was against caste-religion and rules.


The weakening of Hindu society –

the caste-system has spread such a web of untouchability, discrimination and strict restrictions that a large number of Hindus became Muslims and Christians. Having closed the doors of equality in their society, they were attracted to other religions. There was no option for the outcaste except to renounce Hinduism. The rigid caste system made about 30 – 35 percent of India’s Hindus heretics.

Due to many social problems, many problems have arisen due to caste-system, child-marriage, widow-marriage, aristocratic-marriage, value-pricing etc. In the end, we would like to say that as a result of the caste system, many disruptive elements have been active in the country from time to time and due to these tendencies the country has experienced bitter experiences many times. It is because of caste divide that we lose our freedom.


He couldn’t even protect. Now we have one nation. India is a nation from Kashmir to Kanyakumari and from Assam to Gujarat. Only the spirit of one nation and one nationality can take us forward, only then we can stand on our feet, only then we can give a befitting reply to our enemies, then only we can preserve the freedom of the country and only then we can be so strong and May be able to fight for justice in the world and to counter injustice. Our invaluable nationality is under great threat from casteism. No matter how useful caste may have been in the ancient times, but today we should not be infatuated with it by being subject to any emotion. The caste-system has become so corrupt that it is preferable to abandon it, but the mere abandonment of this practice is not the panacea for our problems and losses. It cannot be accepted that mere renunciation of the caste system will remove the defects found in our social structure. For this, we have to rethink on every aspect of personal and social life, adopt a corrective approach in every field and re-evaluate the entire social structure.


Loss of National Integration –

The caste-system has proved to be painful and destructive for the society and the nation. Due to this, instead of creating national pride in our country, caste pride has arisen. Due to caste-discrimination, the opposing invaders could not be fought firmly. Due to its social strength and unity being divided into many small sections of the society, Sikhs ask for their separate Sikhistan, then the people of Maharashtra demanded a separate demand for Maharashtra and the Gujaratis of Gujarat.


Obstacles in the primary and intellectual progress of the society –

Due to the caste-system, opportunities for economic and intellectual progress were available only to the upper-caste people and Shudras were deprived of it. This is the reason that the children of the backward and low-caste sections of the society never got the facility of study and their talented and capable children could not get into the light. Thus this practice struck the foundation and level of the society.


The development of high-low, rage-hatred, communalism and non-democratic feelings-

-caste-system is basically non-democratic. Instead of equality, it encourages inequality. Due to this the society has been divided into high and low and the basis of this high and low is birth, not karma or ability. Due to this high and low, a large section of the society has never been able to make educational, economic or social progress. The caste system gave birth to communalism and untouchability. Due to this communalism, India first remained in the clutches of foreign invaders and in the end it was divided into two pieces. It was the untouchability of the caste-system that brought the Harijan problem and this caste-system ignited the fierce flame of non-cooperation and hatred everywhere.


Bad effect on politics –

The caste system has made the political future of independent and independent India mostly messy and bleak. The history of independent India is a testimony to the fact that Indian voters tend to think of political problems from a caste point of view. Even at the time of government formation, ethnicity is not considered secondary because ethnicity mites are embedded in the majority party. Sometimes administrative decisions are taken on the basis of caste. In place of ‘the people’s state by the people and for the people’, in many respects ‘state of caste, by caste and for caste’ has become ‘state of caste’. Popular government has become a new medium of caste competition. The rival castes have taken membership of different political parties and have formed into parties or separate factions. The poison-tree of ethnicity in politics is certainly very dangerous for the democratic future of the country.


Decline of military power –

Due to the caste system, the military power of the country suffered a big setback because the work of the castes belonging to the same lineage was considered to protect the country, due to which other castes got alienated from here.


Increase in superstition and conservatism –

Caste rules, bye-laws and various religious rituals and customs gave great encouragement to superstition and conservatism in the society. Due to this the individual’s own freedom was crippled and he had to live according to the caste restrictions and rules.

All the primary resources of the society cannot be fully taken advantage of by the caste system – the profession of each caste is fixed due to the caste system. It is not considered right for a person to adopt a profession outside the caste. A caste person can neither leave the industry of his caste nor can he change the means of earning his livelihood. Therefore, due to the caste system, all the primary resources of the country cannot be fully availed.


The caste system is the enemy of women’s rights –

the caste system is the enemy of women’s rights. The plight of women in our society is to a large extent the result of this system. This practice does not give any freedom to women in matters of marriage and does not consider them equal to men in other fields also.


Exploitation of poor and low caste people –

This practice spreads dissatisfaction due to exploitation of poor and low-caste people. By this practice the rights of those people are taken away and their desires are suppressed.


False pride is born –

in the caste system, a feeling of pride and honor is created among the people of the upper caste and in this practice hard work

Equal respect is not given.



With regard to the concept or definition of caste, it can be said that it is primarily a lesson of the people whose membership is based on heredity. It gets a definite place in the caste hierarchy. A caste is not itself a community or a society, but a community or a group of societies whose society is a predetermined place and it is related to a certain occupation. Some important definitions are as follows
Herbert Risley defines caste, writing, “A caste is a collection of families or family groups that share a common name, which derives from an imaginary ancestor, who may be a human or a deity, of its lineage.” claims origin, which carries on the same birth (ancestral) occupation and which is considered to be a homogeneous community by those who are entitled to such judgment or vote. This definition makes 5 things clear – (i) ) A caste is a collective organization of many families , ( ii ) it has a name , ( iii ) each caste has an imaginary ancestor , ( iv ) it has a definite occupation and ( v ) it is a homogeneous community Is known .
According to Majumdar and Madan (D. N. Majumdar and T. N. Madan), “Caste is a closed class. It is clear from this definition that caste is based on birth. Therefore, the caste in which a person is born is in that same caste. Have to live till the end. In no case can the membership of caste be changed. In this sense, caste is a closed class.
Dutta (N. K. Dutta) has defined caste, covering the maximum characteristics of caste, writing, “Caste is a type of social group, whose members do not marry outside their caste, restrictions on food, profession It is certain that hierarchical division is found, it is not possible to change from one caste to another. This definition reveals 6 characteristics of caste – (i) caste is a social group, (ii) caste is endogamous group, (iii) There are restrictions on food and drink in the caste, (iv) the occupation of the caste is fixed, (v) stratification is found among the castes and (vi) it is not possible to change the membership of the caste. Based on the above facts, it can be said that caste is a dynamic system of stratification which is based on birth and imposes restrictions on food, marriage, profession etc.



Difference between Caste and Class

‘ (1) The caste-system is a closed class while the class-motive is an open or free class. The social status in a caste is determined by birth and there is no opportunity to join any other caste. On the contrary, the inequalities of man are recognized in the class system. In this, equal opportunities are given to the person for advancement. On the basis of his merit, a person can enter from one class to another.

Individual ability and ability are neglected in caste. The situation in the class is quite the opposite. On the strength of his ability, a person can reach the upper class of the society.
3. Caste is seen as a closed system of stratification and class as an empty system. Generally, the nature of classes is assumed to be open, but in reality, each class prevents the members of its lower class from coming into its class and generally establishes relations with the members of its class only. In practice the policy of class endogamy is followed even among different classes. This is the reason that some scholars have not accepted any fundamental distinction between caste and class. Yet it is certain that caste and class in their nature, functions and prohibitions have different notions of each other which can be understood as follows:

4. Caste is a closed form of social stratification whereas class is open. No person except one caste can take membership of another caste. The rules of each caste are also different from other castes. Contrast class membership

The door of the world is open to all. A person can become a member of any class according to his wealth, ability, skill.

5. The basis of membership of the caste is birth. The caste in which a person is born once, remains a member of that caste for life. But the membership of the class is based on the actions and efforts of the individual and he can change his class by his ability.

6. The individual does not have to try to get the membership of the caste, but it is provided by the society. This is the reason why there is stability in caste. On the other hand, class membership is entirely the result of individual’s personal efforts and changes in these efforts also result in a change in class membership.

. 7. Each caste has a definite occupation and it is the moral duty of the members of that caste to earn their livelihood through it. But in the class system, a member can choose any occupation according to his interests and resources.

. 8. Every caste necessarily compels its members to establish marriage relations within their own caste. In contrast, there is no such definite rule in a class. Despite this, members of a class try to establish marriage relations within their own class. 6. The basis of superiority in class is economic whereas the status of caste is determined by the society. The basis of the formation of castes are many religious and cultural beliefs. From this point of view, caste is a system of many rules related to purity and impurity. The class-system does not include any kind of beliefs regarding purity or impurity.

9. In the caste-system, a lot of business is decided by birth. In the class system, there is freedom to choose occupation according to his will. .

10. Membership of caste is innate. It is automatically received by him from the society. In contrast, membership of the class is earned. A person can enter from one class to another only by his own efforts.











Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.