Caste System and Social Stratification in India

8 Pages Posted: 28 May 2012

See all articles by Rahul Tiwari

Rahul Tiwari

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: November 18, 2010


The Castes are hereditary endogamous group with fixed traditional occupations, observing commensal prohibition and social restrictions on interaction. It is believed that there are about 3,000 castes in the country. These castes are grouped as upper castes (like Brahmins, Rajputs, Baniyas,Kayasthas,etc.), intermediate castes (like Ahir,Sunar,Kurmi, etc.) and lower caste (like Dhobi, Nai, etc.). The castes are linked with the four varnas (Brahmins, Kshatriyas,Vaisya, and Sudra) for determining the status in ritual hierarchy. I am of the opinion that the caste system in Hinduism has been unduly highlighted by the media and state that one way to discredit any system is to highlight its excesses, and this only adds to the sense of inferiority that many Indians feel about their own culture. Caste system is often portrayed as the ultimate horror, in the media Thus Caste system is going to stay permanently in India and all slogans denouncing the system is a pure and mere eye wash. caste system although was not sanctioned by Vedas made inroads into the society and got entrenched. With Government policies, further irreparable damage has been done to the society and it would be impossible to eradicate the evil. Vested interests have developed due to various reservations where merit is thrown to winds.

Suggested Citation

Tiwari, Rahul, Caste System and Social Stratification in India (November 18, 2010). Available at SSRN: or

Rahul Tiwari (Contact Author)

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