Topics: Caste, Caste system in India, India Pages: 2 (549 words) Published: March 1, 2006
For over two thousand years Brahman Priests wrote the Laws of Manu, which is instilled in every Hindu's life. The way of life forecast by these written Laws include but are not limited to: whom to engage in marriage, when to fight, how to bath/keep clean, what to consume, and whom to avoid.

There is a plethora of examples of people progressing and being oppressed by authorities. One such man, Girdharilal Maurya has shown progress in his life by being a leatherworker. Being a leatherworker, although highly controversial in the Hindu sect, has helped him buy a plot of land outside the village, and request to use the village well. In a show of defiance, his fence has been ruined, tractor stolen, beat his wife and daughter, and burned his house down. In response, Maurya fled the village with his wife and daughter until two years later under mild protection of a human rights lawyer.

The "ideal" life of a Hindu would be to be born as a Brahmans, composed of priests and teachers. Next are the Kshatriyas, the rulers and soldiers, followed by Vaisas, merchants and traders, and Sudras, the laborers. On the bottom of the pole are the Achuta, the "untouchables" whom are outcasts, impure, polluted, and living in prejudice.

There have been several upheavals in response to the progression of the Hindu from the Laws of Manu. In the 1950's, as noted from the article by Tom O'Neill, states that the "constitution mandates a quota system that reserves seats in the federal legislature equal to the Untouchable share of the population: 15 percent." In 1981 there were riots for 78 days in the state of Gujarat when a high-caste student was denied into a medical school because space was made for an Untouchable.

The current ongoing support to bring human rights to the caste systems will be an uphill battle. The Navsarjan, the Washington D.C. based Holdeen Indian Program, has continual progress in the country that reigns itself as being the "model of developing...
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