Saturday, December 24, 2005

New caste System

Well first we should revisit caste system. Each person has certain rights and duties acording to job he does and he can shift from one job to other.But this system became birth based gradually and reasons are not hard to fathom,
1. A child born in family of musician or priest will obviously be attracted towards this profession as environ is same.Moreover if people doing similar job tend to reside in same area then this probability increases.i.e. why ancient India had profession based localities.
2. Parents influence their choices ,moreover as parents are already established in those fields they would not have to start from a scratch,e.g a bania would not have to make contacts to suppliersetc as his ancestors have already done this job.similarly somone doing odd job will have his customer fixed family wise from generations.
3. If your father was good at his profesion peole tend to push you towards the same thing believing that you would also be equally good being his son/daughter.

But actual problem arises when skills required and sophistication attained increases so much that independence to move across job remains only on papers.So when a purohit was required to learn many books by heart this was not possible without a teacher at home, or you could not become a merchant or musician without being in the same environ. and thus caste system became based on birth.

With the arrival of Britishers ,its bonding was slackend a bit as anybody could join army.Anybody could go to free govt schools and become barristor , doctor or clerk. Moreover only location (rural vs urban , british india vs pricely states) was the only disadvantage.
But 60 yrs after freedom we are witnessing arrival of a new caste system. Brahmins are those whose ancestors were able to become technocrates or officals during british time or early freedom.Most of them are settled abroad and if in india they are the elite here.Some of them might be active in wild life conservation, human rights , heritage and such NGOs or writing books etc.They scorn at common indians and are above daily problems of corruption or poverty.
Second is the more enterprisin lot of old business houses.Starting from tats to loacal business czars.Their children do schooling at doon and further class b MBA degrees from USA , fuel the market of imported goos,fashion products and vehicles, run hotels ,go in politics and bag major contracts.
third is the people who are first big in their life.say, IAS officers of first generation or first time minister or politicians or established lawyers ,doctors etc.

Now this system works by creating cultural impediments.For example when i was in school the most prestigious quiz contest in the city was in english ,not only these a major portion was based on hollywood movies and english music and english novels.Such thing is understandable in bombay in delhi but in a city like indore wher till today no talkies shows english movies or you can't find englsih novels except a single shop this was really elitist.CAT can be branded with similar tag.How does your english grammer decide your management qualities.
Our film industry and politicians are the most paternalistic in their future plans.For a actor to enter industry nowadays,without his father being something big in industry is almost impossible.Similarly ost of the mPs across all parties today will force their parties to give tickets to their son or dauhter when they retire.

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