BANGALORE, INDIA August 23, 2013( The Hindu) An educated Shivalli Brahmin boy from Hornad married an orphan brought up in a government shelter without bothering about her lineage, horoscope, caste or gotra and without seeking the counsel of a priest. Is it an indication that a section of Brahmins of interior Malnad region appear to be shunning caste and endogamy? Roopa, who entered the government orphanage as a six year old, was united with B.P. Satish, who was raised in a highly traditional Shivalli Brahmin family. "There hasn't been a single inter-caste marriage in my family for centuries. I changed all that," beamed Satish who works in a college at Sringeri.
What brought about this remarkable revolution? "There are more marriageable boys in our community than girls," explains B.S. Padmanabha, the father. Then, why not marry somebody from another caste? Why only an orphan? Mr. Padmanabha said that because an orphan has no caste. "Once an orphan marries into our caste, she becomes one of us," said the mother. "The problem," according to R. Shankar, "is that educated and beautiful girls from good families only want to marry software engineers living in America. Brahmin boys from rural areas stand no chance."
Shankar and his friends T.N. Prasad and N.R. Sudhir are the new-age matchmakers within the Shivalli community. They say that the worsening farm crisis and dipping education indices among boys in the community are rendering them ineligible for marriage.Shankar and Prasad are all for inter-caste marriages as well, but Sudhir is against the concept. "Marrying orphans and converting them as Shivallis is controversial in itself," said Sudhir.