Caste is a monster that devours people (“No pink chaddis for PMK,” July 13). We should stop supporting political parties and groups that are caste-based, if arson and violence of the kind let loose in Dharmapuri following the marriage of Divya with Ilavarasan are to end. The Dalits of Natham village lost their homes and possessions for no fault of theirs.

Vaibhav Sant,

Hyderabad

The Ilavarasan-Divya episode reminded me of the massacre of Dalits in Tsundur, Guntur, in 1991. Eight Dalits were hacked to death in broad daylight over an alleged case of eve-teasing.

While Brahmins dominated the government appointments in Tamil Nadu till the DMK came to power in 1967, it was the Nairs’ domination in neighbouring Kerala that was contained by progressive legislation which gave a fair representation to the Ezhavas, a backward caste, in government appointments.

P. Narayana Moorthy,

Chennai

Social reformer Periyar saw the world in black and white — Brahmins and non-Brahmins. He postulated that once the Brahmin hegemony was destroyed, justice would prevail and everyone would enjoy self-respect. Events have proved him wrong. Brahmins have been eclipsed but social injustice prevails and self-respect remains a distant dream. By revealing how fiercely the sub-castes among the Scheduled Castes cling to their hierarchical supremacy, the article has disproved that the caste system is perpetuated only by the upper castes.

J.S. Acharya,

Hyderabad

I greatly appreciate Mr. Anand’s writings on Dalit causes, his commitment and uncompromising energy. The caste system is vicious in which the oppressed is also an oppressor and the exploiter is also the exploited. But the reference to Ilavarasan’s “murder” was unfortunate. Let us wait for the investigators to bring out the truth before jumping to conclusions.

A. Narayanan,

Chennai

The selective blindness of elitist groups reinforces the fact that the eyes cannot see what the mind does not know. The so-called forward looking sections are so obsessed with the pub culture that they have forgotten the real meaning of human development. They fail to see the inhuman conditions imposed by caste practices in rural India, where Dalits do not have the right to live with minimum human dignity. Isn’t it ironical that women’s organisations and secular parties, which vociferously fought back an attack in a Mangalore pub, are hardly heard on atrocities against Dalits?

R. Amit Bidari,

New Delhi

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