QUESTION 15: "Can the caste system be eradicated from India? If so, how?" - GLOBAL AMBEDKARITES


Thursday, February 4, 2021

QUESTION 15: "Can the caste system be eradicated from India? If so, how?"



 "Can the caste system be eradicated from India? If so, how?"

Answered by Shekhar Bodhakar

That's a great ‘two in one’ question. Asking this question implies that you have a desire to end the caste system (maybe because deep inside you realise WHY it must be annihilated) and just want to know the “HOW TO”

Yes, as impossible as it may sound, the caste system can be eradicated in India. It's a worthy mission and is an absolute MUST if India is to survive as a progressive nation. It's a mammoth task to annihilate caste from society. So we need to work with diligence. The reason why it seems caste cannot be annihilated is because in order to annihilate something, the desire to do so must be there and it appears that currently most Indians do not have that desire. There can be only two reasons for that:

1. They are, or they think are, benefitting by having caste identities. 

2. They are unaware of daily occurrences of caste related atrocities 

Even anti caste discrimination activists want equality in castes. This implies they are not really fighting for annihilation of caste but just for equal rights. This means indirectly, not necessarily intentionally, they are strengthening people's belief in caste identities. The government too is not interested in making laws that would eradicate caste. The best way forward is if YOU, the individual, declare yourself as casteless and encourage others to do the same. It is WE, the people who must take responsibility for it's eradication.

Only complete Annihilation of caste identities will end casteism. If there were no castes, there couldn't be a system based on caste. Therefore there couldn't be any caste discrimination.

Some people believe that it's impossible to annihilate caste and so think it's pointless to even attempt to do so. They've been brainwashed to believe that. To them I say, “even if ONE person can become casteless, that means it's possible for others to become casteless too.”


It's a matter of educating the masses.

1. Understand WHAT jati/caste is

2. Understand WHY it must be annihilated

3. Understand HOW to annihilate it, from within yourself.

4. Understand the obstacles and Declare yourself as casteless

5. Walk the talk and systematically PROPAGATE the above.


1).  WHAT is jati/caste?

Since in foreign cultures there is no equivalent word or system to represent the jaat/jati system (except those sprouting from the culture of the Indian subcontinent), it is not wise to use a European/foreign word/translation as substitute for the words jaat/jati.

The sociologist G. S. Ghurye wrote in 1932 that,

Despite much study by many people, we do not possess a real general definition of caste. It appears to me that any attempt at definition is bound to fail because of the complexity of the phenomenon. On the other hand, much literature on the subject is marred by lack of precision about the use of the term”

It would make sense to simply use the word ‘jati’ instead of caste.

JATI, in the Pali Language means birth, defined in the Hindi-English science dictionaries as SPECIES (not caste). In Hindu culture, the word JATI was used as a biological term and is still used today in biology lessons when teaching classification of living things in Hindi medium schools. Using the word ‘caste’ waters-down the idea of ‘species’.

In Google translate, SPECIES is correctly translated as JATI

But “Jaati” or “jati” is wrongly translated as “caste”.

Scholars commonly use western terms for words of Indian origin having no actual English equivalent. Translation of ‘jati’ as ‘Caste,' is one such word. I believe this translation gives an excuse to the upholders of the jati system to say that “caste and the caste system” is a European /British construct. It also gives them an excuse to ask such questions as

Where was Dr. Ambedkar wrong in designing the caste system?  Would this question make any sense if the word 'caste' (in this question) was replaced with  the word 'jati' or 'Varna'?

JATI means SPECIES, not caste. So let's use the word JATI if you think classifying human into SPECIES is abhorrent.

Since the first if five steps to eradicate caste is "knowing what caste is" please read..

What is the Indian caste system and how does it work? (In modern India).

If you do not know what something really is, you cannot eradicate it.

2). Understand WHY the concept of belonging to a “Jati” must be annihilated.

Unless a person understands WHY caste should be annihilated, s/he will not be searching the HOW to do so.

A decent human being does not need to be reminded that the whole concept of classifying humans into jatis /species must be annihilated. It is because Hindus had Jati identities, that gave rise to untouchability resulting in atrocities of unimaginable magnitude. The so-called “Untouchables” were not even seen to belong to the human species. They weren't even fit enough to be kept as slaves, for then, there would be that risk of physical touch. They were the Avarnas, ie the Varnaless.

Even though untouchability is outlawed according to the Indian constitution, it is still in common practice today, especially in rural areas. When it is practiced, the authorities often turn a blind eye due to the fact that hardly anyone in position of power is casteless. If there were no jati identities, there wouldn't be caste discrimination and untouchability would automatically die a natural death.

3). Understand HOW to annihilate the caste mentality, from within yourself first.

UNDERSTANDING what jati IS and WHY it must be annihilated is more than half the battle won in annihilating it from within yourself.

UNDERSTAND that in reality no one really has a jati. The only people who socially benefit from a Jati identity are the so called “upper castes". So, unless you're an casteist "upper caste", why should you have /believe in a jati identity?

UNDERSTAND that the caste system is the most vile system of social control in history and the whole purpose having a caste identity is discrimination. By 'complete' annihilation I mean completely eradicating it ALSO from the psyche of those (mainly from low jatis) who, yet understand and want to reject the caste system but, subconsciously continue to behave as if belonging to a particular caste. Brainwashed to the core, they develop caste behaviour.

ASK YOURSELF, “Are there ANY benefits to yourself and society of having a jati identity and if yes, who benefits?” and continue asking yourself that question until YOU are convinced that there is no morally accepted reason to continue having caste identities.

4). UNDERSTAND the obstacles and DECLARE yourself as casteless:

SHUDRAS: Referring to anyone who calls themselves Hindu with their Varna identity is not derogatory. I'm saying this because many think 'Shudra' is a derogatory word. It is not. However, referring to anyone as an untouchable is considered derogatory. If it's acceptable to call a Brahmin a Brahmin, why not call a Shudra a Shudra since they too fall in the same four Varna system? Call a spade a spade. A Shudra is not a Varnaless untouchable. Shudras, for their benefit, should declare themselves to be casteless (Varnaless and jatiless) too.

UNTOUCHABLES: Those who think of themselves as untouchables need to understand that they are Varnaless and originally were considered casteless. Though they had their own sets of beliefs and worshipped their ancestors and nature, they were considered religionless too. Today they are free to follow any religion of their choice (or remain athiests) and can therefore discard their untouchable identity. Those who choose to stick with their untouchable identity are themselves greatly to be blamed for the consequences.

Today it is becoming fashionable to self-identify oneself as Dalit, giving a false sense of security. Dalit' is only a change of label. They might as well continue to call themselves untouchables. Again, call a spade a spade but only because of political correctness it is considered “decent” to call the untouchables dalits. If referring to someone who is seen /known as an untouchable, "an untouchable" is constitutionally and morally wrong, then so should calling them “dalits” be wrong too, since commonly (but wrongly) the meaning of dalit is perceived to mean ONLY those whose ancestors were treated as untouchables.

The marginalized communities, for their benefit, should declare themselves to be casteless and not dalits or untouchables.

What is the exact meaning of hindi word, "Dalit"?

5). Walk the talk and systematically PROPAGATE the above

This is the answer to the second question, “If so, HOW?” Propagate the above four points after declaring yourself as casteless.




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