Caste system must be abolished: SC

New Delhi: In a stinging verdict on upper castes' atrocities against Dalits, the Supreme Court has called upon the government to take some urgent steps to abolish the centuries-old Hindu caste system while sentencing four Thakurs from Uttar Pradesh for brutal massacre of seven lower caste people 30 years ago.

The apex court recorded that the case had warranted the interference by former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and Dalit leader Jagjivan Ram to ensure justice in the 1979 massacre that had taken place in village Lohari under Hussainganj police station.

"Unfortunately, the centuries-old Indian Caste System still takes its toll from time to time. This case unfolds the worst kind of atrocities committed by the so-called upper caste (Kshatriya or Thakur) against the so-called lower caste, Harijans, in a civilised country," the top court observed.

"It is absolutely imperative to abolish the caste system as expeditiously as possible for the smooth functioning of rule of law and democracy in our country," a bench of Justices Dalveer Bhandari and A. K. Patnaik said here on 5 December expressing anguish over occurrence of such crimes. While restoring the life sentence to six members of the Thakur community - Mathura Singh, Udai Bhan Singh, Dhirendra Singh, Munna, Ram Niwas Singh and Vijay Karan Singh - for the heinous crime, the bench directed that the four surviving accused should surrender to the authorities immediately while cancelling their bail bonds.

"The accused belonging to Thakur caste butchered seven innocent persons belonging to the Harijan caste and to wipe out the evidence of their atrocities, after shooting they were thrown in the Ganges," the court stated.

MG comment: The only way to deal with the caste problem is to criminalise discrimination of all kinds on caste basis and to abolish the use of all caste-based surnames. Saddam Husain had done this successfully in Iraq by abolishing all elitist surnames as a move to usher in an egalitarian society (Zafarul-Islam Khan)

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 16-31 December 2009 on page no. 9

We hope you liked this report/article. The Milli Gazette is a free and independent readers-supported media organisation. To support it, please contribute generously. Click here or email us at

blog comments powered by Disqus