Disowning caste / religion
#1
Hi! A quick question to all you folks. Can you disown your caste / religion (officially) in India without any legal consequences. Especially say if you are a Scheduled caste and you do not want to claim benefits anymore (college application, etc..), can you do so without any legal formalities. Or is it legally wrong? Any ideas?
Reply
#2
since caste is on govt forms it is best to legally change it with an affidavit by changing your surname.
Since caste is something you are born into your surname acts as a marker.
Reply
#3
(18-May-2011, 12:02 PM)nastikashiromani Wrote: since caste is on govt forms it is best to legally change it with an affidavit by changing your surname.
Since caste is something you are born into your surname acts as a marker.

I see the point you are making with the surnames, but I don't see it as addressing the issue directly. The surname connection is tenuous for many of the modern Indian surnames, and yet caste prejudice continues.
"Fossil rabbits in the Precambrian"
~ J.B.S.Haldane, on being asked to falsify evolution.
Reply
#4
(17-May-2011, 09:59 PM)mohankarthik Wrote: Hi! A quick question to all you folks. Can you disown your caste / religion (officially) in India without any legal consequences. Especially say if you are a Scheduled caste and you do not want to claim benefits anymore (college application, etc..), can you do so without any legal formalities. Or is it legally wrong? Any ideas?

As others have suggested on facebook, the law states than anyone wishing to move to the open "casteless" category is free to do so with no paperwork necessary.

Just as an aside, let's keep in mind that its not always that the only reason why someone doesn't convert from an SC/ST to the open class is because of the reservations in colleges and free public schooling, even though a vast number of them are too poor to be able to go to school or college without aid. In much of rural India the "lower" castes actively conform to their caste customs because of their superstitious beliefs, and there is social pressure and threat of violence from the "upper" castes if the former try to change their identity. Many of these people have no property or possessions, and they have no choice but to remain where they are, slaves to their birthright unless their economic conditions improve. And even when some of these people make it out of poverty, they sometimes find that all the establishments in the villages and towns where they grew up will not serve them.
"Fossil rabbits in the Precambrian"
~ J.B.S.Haldane, on being asked to falsify evolution.
Reply
#5
@Ajita, Very true. I recently visited my dad's native village and could see everything in action. I'll try writing something up with some of the images I took. Hence I felt that if change had to come, it has to come form the urban population where atleast the social pressures are lesser.

Coming back to the original question, I've tried contacting IAS officials, lawers and from what I've heard, you can be prosecuted for mis-stating your caste. And the supreme court has done so in the past. What they advised me is to write to the institution asking them to not grant me any benefits (since that is my primary motive) but to mention the caste in the column. They said that its not optional until the government of India makes it optional.

Since it is my personal education, I've decided to go ahead and mention "my caste" in the column and to write the insitution a cover letter stating that I do not want to be considered for benefits. But I'd like to research more on this. Could any of you actually link me a constitution article or a IPC law that states that deals with this. Or a court ruling on this subject could also be useful. I've been searching for the last few days but I'm not able to hit the nail.

Thanks guys.
[+] 1 user Likes mohankarthik's post
Reply




Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)