The first article of a 10-part series that explores the caste system. You can navigate through the other articles by clicking the arrows at the bottom of the page. Front cover photo: Lalita, a girl from the Musahar caste (also known as ‘rat eaters’) teaches other young girls karate at a Mahila Shikshan Kendra (Women’s Education Centre). She has overcome great barriers in a society that regards her as the most disadvantaged since she is a female from one of the lowest castes in India. She attended the centre against her father’s will and learned how to read, write and defend herself.
Combatting Caste ‘In the rainy season,’ the woman began, ‘it is really bad. Water mixes with the shit and when we carry it (on our heads) it drips from the baskets, on to our clothes, our bodies, our faces. When I return home I find it difficult to eat food sometimes. The smell never gets out of my clothes, my hair. But this is our fate. To feed my children I have no option but to do this work.’ via New Internationalist