Untouchables Castes in India
The emergence of the untouchables on the socio-political scene is one of the significant events of the twentieth century India. This pioneering study traces the history of this phenomenon in the form of the rise of the Raigar community as a socio-political force from 1940 to 2004. Focusing on eight states of northern India - Rajasthan, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Haryana and Punjab, the author traces the genesis and development of the Raigar movement from its early days of self-reform through the successive agitations, formation of organisations and their active participation in freedom struggle. He also provides the traditional account of socio-religious, educational and economic disabilities imposed on untouchables in a traditional Hindu society.The author analyses the Dalit Movement as a part of broader socio-religious and educational reform movement. In this process, Raigars sought to transform their socio-economic life, while opposing the caste system. The book also discusses the gains and failures of the movement in the pre- and post-independence periods.This invaluable study will be of interest to political scientists, cultural historians, sociologists, activists and all those studying the grassroots efforts of the untouchables in a new social order.
Publication Date: 1/1/2006