Hari Narke

Member Secretary,
Dr Ambedkar, Mahtma Phuleand Shahuji Maharaj writings and
publications committeegovernment of Maharashtra.
Email : harinarke@yahoo.co.in

The Hindu social order was based on the Four Verna system i.e. Chaturvarna Brahmins, Kshatriya, Vaishya and Shudra. These varnas are designed as the different floors of the building without a stair case. This is the ladder of inequality. There is no parallel in world of such a discriminatory and cruel system of human subjugation as the Indian caste system. The caste system has the sanction of all Hindu scriptures.


·  In the very first chapter of Manusmriti, it is clearly stated that Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Shudras were created by Brahma (creator of this world) from his mouth, hands, thighs and feet respectively. Manu claims that the same Brahma, who created this world, also created Manusmriti and taught it to him

·  The Brahmins were created for teaching, studying, performing yajnas (ceremonial sacrifices), getting yajnas performed, giving and accepting dan (gifts). The Kshatriyas were created for protecting the citizens, giving gifts, getting yajnas performed and studying. The Vaishyas were created for protecting animals, giving gifts, getting yajnas performed, studying, trading, lending money on interest and doing agricultural work. The Shudras were created by Brahma for serving Brahmins and the other two varnas without being critical of them.

·  Brahmins are the masters of the entire universe. Besides, Brahmins alone act as a sort of post office for transmitting food to the gods and the dead, that is to say, the gods and the dead eat food through the mouths of Brahmins (apparently because they do not have mouths of their own). Therefore, no one can be superior to Brahmins. All others are said to enjoy everything owing to the Brahmins' mercy. The Manusmriti clearly states that Brahmins alone are entitled to teach this dharmashastra and none else.

·  Manusmruti article 10.129 says, “ Even though the shudra possesses the quality/merit, he/she should be prohibited from collection of wealth or money.”

·  Manusmruti article 8.416 gives the right to the Brahmins to snatch the wealth of shudras. Manusmruti also prevented women giving equal right and freedom.

·  Article 1.91 says, “Shudras are prohibited from taking education. They should serve the above 3 vernas without complaining to anybody.” It is interesting to note that studying, getting yajnas performed and giving gifts or charity are common duties of Brahmins, Kshatriyas and Vaishyas; whereas teaching, accepting gifts and performing yajnas are reserved exclusively for Brahmins. The Shudras, of course, are denied the rights to study, getting yajnas performed by Brahmins

·  Manusmruti was not merely a religious book but it was a constitution of India for 2000 yrs.

·  The Hindu law as codified by Manu is based on the principle of inequality. The punishment for a particular crime is not same for all varnas. In fact, the punishment varies depending on the varna of the victim as well as the varna of the person committing the crime. For the same crime, the Brahmin is to be given a mild punishment, whereas the Shudra is to given the harshest punishment of all. Similarly, if the victim of a crime is a Shudra, the punishment is mild, and the punishment is harsh in case the victim is a Brahmin.

·  If a Brahmin is awarded death sentence, it is sufficient to shave his head, but Kshatriya, Vaishya and Shudra are to actually die. If a Kshatriya, a Vaishya, or a Shudra repeatedly gives false evidence in the court, he is to be punished and expelled from the kingdom, whereas the Brahmin is not to be punished, he is to be only expelled.

·  If a person has sexual intercourse with a consenting women of his own varna, he is not to be punished. But if a person of lower varna has sexual intercourse with a woman of higher varna, with or without her consent, he is to be killed.

·  If a Brahmin forces a dwija to work for him, he is to be punished. But if a Brahmin forces a Shudra to work for him, whether by making or not making payments to him, he is not to be punished, because Shudras have been created only for serving Brahmins.

·  If a Brahmin abuses a Shudra, he is to be fined mildly, but if a Shudra abuses a Brahmin, he is to be killed. On the other hand, even if a Brahmin kills a Shudra, he is merely to perform penance by killing a cat, frog, owl or crow, etc. Thus a Shudra is to be killed for abusing a Brahmin, whereas a Brahmin is to be let off lightly even if he kills a Shudra. Such is the unequal justice of Manusmriti

·  For borrowing the same amount, Kshatriya has to pay more as interest than Brahmin, Vaishya more than Kshatriya and the Shudra has to pay the maximum amount as interest.

·  Manusmriti, a dwija ought to marry a woman of his own varna. A woman of the same varna is considered best for the first marriage. However, a dwija may take a woman of inferior varna as his second wife if he is overcome by sexual passion. But Manu strongly disapproves of Brahmins and Kshatriyas taking a Shudra woman even as their second wife. They become Shudra if they do so.

·  Manu clearly mentions that Brahmin, Kshatriya and Vaishya, collectively known as dwija and the Shudras are the four varnas. There is no fifth varna. He explains the origin of other castes by saying that they are varna-sankara castes, that is to say, castes originating due to the intermixture of different varnas, both in anuloma (upper varna male and lower varna female) and pratiloma (lower varna male and upper varna female) manner. Nishad caste is said to have originated from anuloma relationship between Brahmin male and Shudra female.

·  Chandala caste is said to be owing its origin to pratiloma relationship between Shudra male and Brahmin female.

·  Manu seems to be disapproving of pratiloma relationship more than the anuloma, because he describes Chandalas as the lowest of the low castes. The Chandala, says Manusmriti, must not ever reside inside the village. While doing their work, they must reside outside the village, at cremation ground, on mountains or in groves. They are not entitled to keep cows or horses, etc., as pet animals. They may keep dogs and donkeys. They are to wear shrouds. They are to eat in broken utensils. They are to use ornaments of iron, not of gold. They must keep moving from one place to another, not residing at the same place for a long duration. They must not move around in villages and cities in night hours. They may enter the villages and cities in daytime, with king's permission, wearing special symbols (to enable identification), and take away unclaimed dead bodies.

·  A Brahmin, according to Manu, must not teach the Shudra and woman even if he dies with his knowledge without imparting it to anybody. On the other hand, if anyone studies the Vedas on his own he or she will go straight to hell.


No one is to argue critically about vedas because religion has originated from them. Any nastika (non-believer) or critic of the Vedas, who "insults" them on the basis of logic, is worthy of being socially boycotted by "noble" persons.

Women, that is, even women belonging to Brahmin, Kshatriya and Vaishya varna are not entitled to upanayan and the study of the Vedas. For them, marriage is equivalent to upanayan and service of their husbands is equivalent to the study of the Vedas in the gurukul. Even if the husband is morally degraded, engaged in an affair with another woman and is devoid of knowledge and other qualities, the wife must treat him like a god. A widower is allowed to remarry but a widow is not. Besides, women are not considered fit for being free and independent. They are to be protected in their childhood by father, in youth by husband and in old age by son. They should never be allowed by their guardians to act independently. A woman must never do anything even inside her home without the consent of her father, husband and son respectively. She must remain in control of her father in childhood, of husband in youth and of son after the death of her husband.


In Ramayana,  Ram kills Shambuka simply because he was performing tapasya (ascetic exercises) which he was not supposed to do as he was a Shudra by birth.


In Mahabharata, Dronacharya refuses to teach archery to Eklavya, because he was not a Kshatriya by birth. When Eklavya, treating Drona as his notional guru, learns archery on his own, Drona makes him cut his right thumb as gurudakshina (gift for the teacher) so that he may not become a better archer than his favorite Kshatriya student Arjuna!


 The much-glorified Bhagvat-Gita, too, favors varna-vyavastha.When Arjuna refuses to fight, one of his main worries was that the war would lead to the birth of varna-sankaras or offspring from intermixing of different varnas and the consequent "downfall" of the family. On the other hand, Krishna tries to motivate Arjuna to fight by saying that it was his varna-dharma (caste-duty) to do so because he was a Kshatriya. In fact, Krishna goes to the extent of claiming that the four varnas were created by him only.

In the backdrop of ever pervading exploitative Bramhnical Social Order, Gautam Buddha made a first revolt against the Bramhnism 2500 years ago.  Goutam Buddha was the first one to introduce the concept of social equality and justice. He also gave equal right to both men and women. Through Dhamma, he provided equal opportunities to the people of all the social strata. To counter Buddha’s social equality revolution, manusmriti was introduced by Vaidik Aryans. Dr Ambedkar called this as a counter revolution of India. During the British rule in India, everybody was equal before law which was introduced through criminal procedure code. But civil code was still based on the Manusmruti. All the civil judgments were based on manusmruti during British rule.

Mahatma Jotirao Phule stood against the Manuwad (Manusmriti Article 1.91) and started the first Indian school for Bahujans in 1848.He also demanded reservation based on caste population in services and in educational fields for the first time. Mahatma Phule exposed the misdeeds of bramhins as to how they cheat the gullible Bahujan Samaj by creating in them a fear of God.

The king of Kolhapur Shahuji Maharaj implemented 50 % caste based reservation in 1902 in his Kolhapur state. During 1920s, the southern states like Mysore also implemented the same reservation policy.

In 1921 Periyar Ramaswami Naikar and his justice party burnt the Manusmruti and made revolt against the vaidik system. The sustenance of Dravidian movement as started by Periyar can mainly be attributed to his success in freeing people from the mental slavery of Bramhinism.

In 1932, Dr Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar in the round table conference demanded reservation at all India level. In 1935, due to Dr Ambedkar’s efforts reserve seats and the principle of reservation was accepted by British government. But the major breakthrough in the process of social justice came into existence through the constitution of India, which was written by Dr Ambedkar. The most important article no.14 of the Constitution of India provides equality before law to all Indians. Article 15: Prohibition of discrimination on the grounds of Religion, race, caste, sex or place of birth. Article 15(4): Provision of reservations, Article 16: provides equal opportunity in matters of public employment. Manusmriti divided the society according to caste based employment but Dr Ambedkar gave equal opportunity to all the castes. (Revolt against code of manusmruti 10.129). The actual benefits from the efforts of Dr Ambedkar were evident when the resources were generated as part of this revolution. Article 46 : promotion of educational and economic interest of SC ST and other weaker sections Article 330-342 : Reservation for SC ST and OBC in emplyemnt, education and political. 340: OBC reservation

            Dr Ambedkar resigned from the law ministry in protest of non-implementation of article 340 by the Nehru led congress govt. In 1953 First backward class commission was established under the chairmanship of Mr. Kalelkar. Kalelkar was so castiest Brahmin that he wrote a letter to the district collector of Satara district before visiting the place that he would eat the food prepared by Brahmin cook only. Kalelkar opposed caste base reservations due to which OBCs were prevented from their social justice. The second backward class commission was constituted under the chairmanship of Mr. B. P. Mandal who was former Chief Minister of Bihar. This commission recommended 27 % reservation for OBCs in 1980. But late Indira Gandhi and her son late Rajiv Gandhi refused to implement Mandal recommendations. During 1991 Mr. V.P. Singh was forced to implement the Mandal commission by the Ambedkarite movement but V.P. Singh partly implemented Mandal commission. Proper implementation of constitutional rights is still not done. e.g. Countrywide atrocities on dalits ,decreased female population , Opposition to OBC reservation. These are the main obstacles in the path of social justice.

A revolutionary ordinance was passed by the Hon. Chief Minister of Tmilnadu Mr. Karunanidhi to appoint non Brahmins Priests in all Hindu temples. But much before him in 1927 and 1936 Dr Ambedkar demanded to conduct an examination for the post of Shankaracharyas and other religious bureaucrats. But, till today all the posts of shankaracharyas are 100 % reserved for Brahmins. The wish of Dr Ambedkar and Periyar Ramawamy is partly fulfilled by C.M. Karunanidhi so we must congratulate him. The castiest electronic and print media is opposing 27 % reservation but why this media is keeping quiet on this 100 % Brahmin reservation. But we should not keep quiet and we should fight for our rights.

To achieve the total social justice Dr Ambedkar gave a

5-point programme

·  Free and compulsory Education to Everybody

·  Critical evaluation of religious books like Vedas, Gita, Ramayana and Mahabharata

·  Redistribution of resources land, water, wealth, etc.

·  Intercaste marriages

·  Buddha Dhamma

Dr Ambedkar chose the path of struggle to achieve social justice. He said, “ The battle to me is a matter full of joy. The battle is in the fullest sense spiritual not for wealth or power. It is a battle for freedom. It is a battle for the reclamation of human personality which has been suppressed and mutilated by the Hindu social system and will continue to be suppressed and mutilated if in the political struggle the Hindus win and we lose. My final words of advise to you is Educate, agitate and organize, have faith in yourself and never lose hope”.