Md. Afsar Ali
Reservation is the equity treatment, an essential pre-requirement to every competitor taking part in any competition in any dimension of life. So, there rightly is a constitutional provision to grant this ladder of equity to the socio-economically and educationally disadvantaged vast section of Indian population – about 26 crore (20%) Scheduled Caste (SC) and about 13 crore (10%) Scheduled Tribe (ST) plays a significant role in country’s electoral power politics.
In reality, our clever ruling class has converted this pre-requirement into a trick-loop to keep the underprivileged SC and ST masses within their exploitative politico-religious fold as cattle in the cattle-shed of the butcher. Immediately after the proclamation of our constitution, the Hon’ble first President of our country prohibited SC reservation to anybody professing other than Hinduism as religion, through a Presidential Order, issued on 10th August, 1950. This Order is called the Scheduled Caste Order! But the Order completely violates article 15 of our constitution, which clearly ensures fundamental right to every citizen of India, “(1) The State shall not discriminate against any citizen on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them.” But, in spite of this, that the Order nakedly violates the constitutionally guaranteed fundamental right of the citizens, the heart of our Constitution. Astonishingly, the said Order is in full operation without interruption till today! Although the Constitutional provision of promulgation of a Presidential Order is only in the State Emergency ground, like sudden external military aggression, etc. and moreover, that Order must be either approved or discarded by the Central Legislature within a period of not more than six months – and can remain in operation only when it is approved there. But due to some mysterious reason(s) that unconstitutional Presidential Order is functioning even today! After much hue and cry the Sikhs and Buddhist are considered under the all encompassing Hindu umbrella (as the upper caste does not consider Sikhism and Buddhism as separate religions, rather the branches of Hinduism) and granted Scheduled Caste reservation to them. Now, the amended version of the said Presidential Order reads, “No person who professes a religion different from the Hindu (Sikh or Buddhist) religion shall be deemed to be a member of Scheduled Caste.” Accordingly, the Muslim and Christian Indian citizens are deprived of their Constitutional fundamental right of equal treatment in availing the benefits of reservation by the State itself on only unconstitutional ground of religion!
The Order is designed to ensure political benefit to our so called upper caste rulers and certain deception in disguise to the Scheduled Caste people. The Order blatantly says none other than Hindu can have the benefit of reservation! By this statement many birds are stoned together at once. Firstly, the huge mass of Scheduled Caste population in our country are tactfully kept under the Hindu fold of religion, the rulers’ religion; luring them by SC reservation benefit. After the inclusion of the SCs’, the Hindus become a majority community. This gives the rulers political huge dividend in our majoritarian parliamentary democracy. Secondly, the SCs’ slowly lose their separate religio-cultural identity to slowly succumb to rulers’ religious identity. Thirdly, as the Hindu caste system considers these SCs as the down-graded caste or varna and treats them accordingly as religio-culturally bonded divine slaves. So, more the number of Hindu SCs more benefits to the upper castes in the field of politics and economy. That is why all the SCs must be kept within the Hindu fold, i.e., as Sudra or Ati-Sudra slaves, to get guaranteed servile class in all cases particularly in securing majority by the upper caste privileged rulers in our majoritarian democracy. If the provision for reservation is not nullified to the believers of other religion (other than Hinduism) as Muslims and Christians there will be no barrier to the historically oppressed SC people to embrace the religion of equality and humanity, as their ancestors did in masses to constitute more than 90 per cent of Indian Muslims and Christians. If this trend of escaping caste-ridden Hinduism is not checked by hook or crook – the lowest servile and supporting class (caste) will shortly dry out and the so called “upper caste” ruling castle made so cleverly, will inherently collapse! Such suicidal policy, the ruling class does not want at any cost. So, they checked it without delay, immediately after the implementation of our humanitarian constitution.
Let’s analyse how this Order affects the SC people themselves? The SCs lost the vital thing for living, san development or progress – it was freedom! They lost their freedom of choice, the essential criteria of our constitution. They lost their liberty of change for betterment. They lost their dignity of self and community honour. They lost their own proud and heroic history and their dignified boasting ancestors, the great men. They lost their glorious culture. All these losses have very far reaching negative effects. Their future generations will fail to find the footing for their dignified human-living – as their forefathers had bonded their freedom, liberty, right to choice, right to change, right to striving for betterment and awarded them with cultural rootlessness and historical degradation, dishonor. They are tied to the strong pall of casteism by a alluring but deceptive rope of SC reservation. They are like cage-bird which gets some corns and nuts for its existence to meet the fancy of its owner /lord but lost its vast open sky, the deep forest, the freedom of singing at its own pleasure …. And many more! So, the Scheduled Caste people lose more and gains hereditarily permanent chain of enslavement by the inhuman caste system.
No progress is possible without freedom, liberty, own cultural root, own proud history. But, this reservation snatches the rights of freeman from the large Scheduled Caste community! They have bonded their natural rights to choose their own life philosophy, the most suitable path to lead their social, economic, educational, cultural and spiritual rights in lieu of SC reservation. They can’t but remain within the Hindu religio-cultural fold – whether they like it or not; otherwise their SC reservation will be snatched. Thus, the SCs have no right to choose one’s own faith and belief, no right to choose one’s own culture, no right to come out of the caste ridden shackles of slavery granted by the Brahminist ‘Sastra’ to these so called lowest graded (Sudra or Ati-sudra) people! Thus, they have no right to choice one’s emancipation.
About 39 crore Indians (SC, ST) are being made bonsai within the preview of all encompassing inhuman caste ridden socio-politico-cultural suffocating environment. The sugar-coated reservation, which in disguise a trap to shackle the free men within the divine slavery of casteism, should be thrown away. That is the only path of emancipation from being bonded oneself with the permanent shackles of casteism. This denial of reservation will liberate them to get all round freedom and this freedom will accelerate their free, unhindered, all round limitless progress – political, cultural and economic.
Disclaimer: The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Background.