Sociology Answer Writing Practice 2018 - Week 4 - Question 6
90 Days Sociology Answer Writing Practice Question 2 for 07-Dec-2018
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07-Dec-2018 - Question 2
Explain the concepts of dominant caste’ and ‘ vote ‘ bank giving examples from specific regions. (2017)(250 words)
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M N Srinivas used the concept of ‘dominant caste’ to highlight the social and political organization in India. He had defined the dominant caste in terms of following six attributes-
-Sizeable amount of arable land
-High place in the local hierarchy
-Urban sources of income and
-jobs in administration
Out of these, the following three are important-
A dominant caste is any caste having these three attributes.
a)Lingayats and Okkalingas in Andhra Pradesh
b)Reddys and Kammas in Andhra Pradesh
c)Marathas in Maharashtra
d)Patidars in Gujrat
e)AJGAR (Ahirs, Jats, Gujjars and Rajputs) in northern India
Owing to their numerical strength, they constitute vote banks and have claimed political power.
However, this was criticised by F G Bailey in his study of Bisipara village. He presented that the toddy tappers over a period of time got employed in industries, bought landed property and also claimed political power. However, they could not become dominant caste. This has questioned the criterion for dominant caste.
However, the study and concept given by M N Srinivas are still highly relevant. In contemporary times, Dalits are getting organised and constitute vote bank. They have formed their own political parties. Vote bank politics and politicisation of caste are going on together. Thus, numerical strength has emerged as the most important factor. In a democracy, numerical strength matters and castes having numerical strength tend to form vote banks.