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December 19, 2006


Why Do We Have Reservations Based on Caste?

Why did our forefathers moot the idea of implementing reservations in Indian education system and employment?

The idea of reservations was mooted to rectify the Indian social system which was far more debilitating than the Indian economic system. For centuries, spanning nearly two thousand years, a majority of India was persecuted, discriminated and ostracized by a minority community on the name of caste. Caste was and is inviolable to all Indians- it was decided two thousand years ago for all generations to come, and nothing one can do to change that. Contrast this with a feudal system- a farmer can become a landlord in 2-3 generations and thus completely change his social status. In a religious system, one can espouse a new religion to escape persecution. But in a caste system, one cannot change his caste and hence will continue to be discriminated for generations. This inviolable and deeply entrenched caste system in India was used to ostracize and oppress a low caste majority by the high caste minority- by keeping lower castes out of all social systems- education, religion, business, administration, employment, etc, and this was carried out systematically through many centuries resulting in what we call as 'social handicap'.

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