During my stay abroad, the most repetitive question I have been asked about India is regarding the caste system. It is unfathomable for people that people can be divided on some basis based on birth. I anyway explain its origin and its decreasing relevance in the modern times. I used to think that it can last at max for 1 more generation, given the widespread education. Yet looking at the current political scenario, I have started to doubt this conclusion of mine. And to look at the most recent developments of minority reservation, I am sure this is going to be much more ugly.
The causes for introduction of reservation for few groups are well known to us. The people known as SC/ST were treated poorly and thus were left behind in development. But apart from reservation, they tried to liberate themselves by other means also, predominantly CONVERSION. There are other religions, Islam and Christianity predominantly, who talk about the "equality of all human beings who follow their faith". Non-believers are equal in their inferiority, as they all get a direct ticket to hell. But at least, all the believers were supposed to be equal. So the Hindu oppressed castes converted to these only true religions for leading a life of dignity they were promised. Thus, when I hear the words dalit muslims, dalit christians etc, I fail to understand its meaning. Did the prophets of these religions said that converted people will be treated in an inferior manner? If not, then why does this division exists? If it exists, what do the oppressed people gain from this conversion, and what about the preached gospel truths of equality of these faiths?
If indeed dalit muslims and dalit christians exists who are discriminated against due to birth, why Hinduism alone is vilified for having the caste system? Let it be taught in the books that Islam and christianity too divide people on the basis of caste. I have not come across a single text book containing this truth. Additionally, it means that conversion is made on false promises, and thus should be banned. If conversion does make them equal, then they are no longer "socially backward", and hence no benefit of reservation should be provided to them. They can't have it both the ways. Economic reservation is a different issue and I am not touching it here.
But to me, there is a deeper conspiracy behind this episode. I think RSS is behind this dalit muslim reservation demand. They are jealous of the unity of these Abrahamic religions, and want to weaken them by some means. It can be gained if their society can be divided in a way the Hindu society is divided. For that purpose, even if reservation is given in the short term, it should be good thing. Once this reservation is given, it can be easily argued that all muslims are not equal, and their religions will be exposed thoroughly. Plus the caste system will become more systematic and permanent. Devout followers of the religion should look through this RSS conspiracy and should not allow this reservation at any cost, which will be detrimental to their religion in the long run.
Alternately, as a fellow tweeple pointed out : Provide the religious reservations in India, but first take out the word SECULAR from the preamble of the constitution, and declare India a Hindu country. After all, isn't a secular state deemed to be neutral to religion?