The Indians are proud of their country and want to see the country prosper economically worldwide, but the caste system is holding the country back. Indians show a level of ambivalence about the country’s heritage and traditions. While a majority thinks that the country is being held back for its caste system, viewing it as the barrier to the social harmony in India, some feel that the people in India don’t take their religion seriously enough, while the other believe that young people have lost the touch with their heritage and traditions.
The Hinduism is the major religion in India, 80.5% of the population identifies themselves as Hindu. The caste system lies in this religion, under five divisions, namely Brahmans, Kshatriyas, Vaisyas, Sudras and Dalits or untouchables. Caste system is a social stratification based on ones heredity and, within within the caste group, members are restricted in their choice of social participation and occupation. Even marriages are performed within the caste classified.
The occupational barriers that existed between Indian castes began breaking down under the economic pressure in the 20th century, while the social distinction still exists. The discrimination of the Dalit minority has become an important human rights and political issue in this country. The Dalits are among the poorest of the Indian population, reason being the prior caste barriers that held them back.
The educational system also neglected the lower castes previously and it still prevails in many part of the country. These things affect the economic structure of a vast population in India. The lack of access to the services and decision making leads to poor education, health and status, which leads to poor economic condition and high illiteracy rate which in turn leads to increased poverty.
Though under the Indian constitution, discrimination on the basis of caste is illegal. Efforts have been made to eradicate this caste system as this is a barrier to the country’s global image.
India is a country going through huge social change because of its rapid economic growth. The poverty rates in the country have been reduced but the gap between the rich and the poor appears to be getting wider. To combat these situations we need to eradicate the bit of caste system practices that is still performed.