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Essay on “Casteism And The Reservation Policy” Complete Essay, Paragraph, Speech for Class 10, Class 12 and Graduation and other classes.

Casteism And The Reservation Policy

Indian culture is a combination of the characteristics of the numerous races that settled in India in different periods of time. Modem Indian society, based on such a composite culture, can, therefore, claim to be neither homogeneous nor uniform. While the variety that the different races introduced in Indian culture has been beneficial in certain cases, it has not been so in others. Some features of the culture, like casteism, have proved to be particularly harmful to society, as well as to its egalitarian mentality.

Ironically, casteism was introduced to ensure healthy community living. It was inspired by the ideals of division of labour, and was meant to benefit the whole society. Human communities, since the beginning of history, have been built on the bases of occupations and pursuits, like agriculture, industry, trade, education, entertainment and even spirituality; each of which contributed in its own way to the well-being of the community. In time, as these occupations became hereditary; with a farmer’s son becoming a farmer, and a teacher’s son, a teacher; divisions were created in the communities on the lines of professions and occupations. Though initially, all occupations that were useful to the community commanded due respect all around, prejudice against some, and preference for others, developed in the minds of the people, to create friction within the communities. Before long, casteism was transformed from being a device for healthy balance within communities, to being a tool to exploit large sections of the people. In other e people forced casteism to become

Casteism, as it is understood today, is certainly an anachronism in modern lifestyles and outlook. Successive governments, both at the national and state levels, have been working hard to eliminate it from society. But because it is deeply ingrained in the people’s minds, it is extremely difficult to remove it. It is indeed unfortunate that, even after fifty years of independence, casteism continues to play an important role in all fields of social activity in India.

The governments’ attempts to wipe out casteism have fetched them, at best, mixed results. The policy of reservation for the oppressed castes in education, employment and social initiatives has enabled many people belonging to those castes to attain high social status and respectability. However, owing to the selfishness of those benefited, and the craftiness of certain vested interests and political parties, the benefits of the policy have not been distributed as widely among the people as desired. Those who benefit by the policy tend to hold on to its facilities, depriving others from their caste the right to those facilities. In the prevailing situation, since caste is the main criterion for reservation, it is possible for those whom the policy has benefited, to let their children enjoy its benefits as well, even if they are sufficiently well-off, both economically and socially, to educate their children without the concessions of reservation.

The reservation policy will not serve its purpose unless it ensures that, those who are economically well-off are eliminated from. its reckoning. It will be better implemented if it restricts its facilities to only one generation of a family, but with no restriction on the number of beneficiaries in that particular generation. If either of or both the parents in a family have benefited from the policy, in the form of education or employment, their children should not enjoy the privileges of reservation. The parents, by virtue of the benefits they enjoyed, should be able to bring up their children without outside support. Such a scheme will ensure that reservation does not pass from one generation to the next as a right or an inheritance. It will also ensure that opportunities pass on to others in the community; eventually benefiting the entire community. Moreover, since according to this scheme, the benefits of reservation will spread evenly within the community, rather than stagnate or concentrate in certain pockets, the practice of reservation can probably end sometime in the future; unlike the present practice, which may never end.

Another advantageous innovation will be to link the reservation policy with that of population. In fact, such a linkage can benefit both the policies. Though political considerations will make the linkage infrastructure, it nevertheless deserves due notice.

A community, the strength of which shows a declining trend, may be allowed to retain its quota of reservation benefits, while another that shows an increase in its number, may be penalized by a cut in its quota. The surplus created as a result of such a penalty may be awarded to the first community as a bonus. This innovation will ensure that all communities will actively involve themselves in the exercise of population control.

The flaws in the governments’ policy on reservation have caused many social problems. When the policy was originally formulated, it was not perhaps necessary to include the economic criteria in determining eligibility for reservation. Poverty was a common and widespread feature of all the oppressed castes. But since the economic scene of the country has changed considerably since Independence, poverty can no longer be considered synonymous with the backward castes. Owing to the benefits of reservation, many people belonging to the backward castes, who were poor, have now become well – off.

Another drawback of the reservation policy is its emphases on concessions and privileges rather than on facility and encouragement. Facilities and encouragement will appeal more to the natural and sincere interest of the people than to their greed and pride. Privileges and concessions, on the other hand, will only substitute one type of discrimination with another, they will not eliminate discrimination altogether.

The policy, to realize its true aims, should be managed sensibly and justly. The leadership should have the wisdom and courage to take bold decisions in the larger interests of society. Unless it comes up with innovative ideas and workable solutions, the leadership will end up creating problems rather than solving them.

Now is the time for us to see castes in their proper perspective. Caste is an entirely notional, human concept, with no relation to a person’s abilities. Much more than caste, it is the economic background of the people that determines their ability to come up in society.


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