The very idea of consolidating intermediate caste groups against Dalits (Dec. 3) is regressive. A person belonging to a particular caste considers himself superior to a man belonging to another, and to him the sight of the latter wearing jeans, t-shirts and sunglasses is obnoxious.
One who attributes the failure of love marriages to caste in this age of globalisation must be truly ignorant of today’s socio-economic dynamics. No right-thinking person or group will rally behind a leader who seeks to plunge society into casteism.
Almost all political parties nurture caste outfits. During elections, new caste outfits are created; they are even encouraged. These outfits have grown in number and are locking horns with one another. All right-thinking political parties should resolve that they will not entertain a caste-oriented approach to candidate selection or alliance formation. Till such time as our governments continue to ask for a person’s caste for various reasons, the caste system cannot be abolished.
The demand for the dilution of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act is growing in some parts of Tamil Nadu. Political outfits that have no mass base seek to capture power by creating animosity among people or exploiting the differences that already exist. Law-enforcement agencies find it difficult to curb the growing menace.
Stringent laws alone are not enough to contain such divisive tendencies. Civil society, religious leaders, philanthropists and educated youth should expose the parties that indulge in the politics of caste.
Caste unrest is our own making. Instead of eradicating caste from our society in the last 65 years, politicians and vested interests have strengthened the system to their benefit.
I am no supporter of PMK leader S. Ramadoss but I feel he has raised some valid points, including the demand for the dilution of the SC/ST Act.
V. Tilak Subramanian,
There is no point in blaming Dr. Ramadoss for trying to consolidate intermediate castes or opposing inter-caste marriages. Political leaders who oppose him should first throw away their community certificates and declare Tamil Nadu a casteless society.
Let them not attack Dr. Ramadoss while continuing to enjoy the benefits of caste-based reservation.
Keywords: TN caste issues