The caste system in India prohibits marriage outside the caste. However, inter-caste marriages have gradually gained acceptance due to increasing education, employment, middle-class economic background, and urbanisation. According to a survey in 2014, about 5% of marriages are inter-caste in India.
In India, inter-caste marriages were publicly encouraged and supported by politicians such as C. N. Annadurai, former Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, and social activists such as Periyar E. V. Ramasamy, Raghupathi Venkataratnam Naidu and Manthena Venkata Raju. In the North Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, the Government offers a cash award for inter-caste couples. The Supreme Court of India has also declared that inter-caste marriages are in the national interest and a unifying factor for the nation and there is no bar in inter-caste or inter-religion marriages in India.
There is an increasing trend among users of online matrimony sites in India to declare one's willingness to marry outside their caste.
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- "Love in the time of caste". The Hindu. 2013-07-27. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 2015-11-06.
- Anita Diehl. (1977). E. V. Ramaswami Periyar. A study of the influence of a personality in contemporary South India, Scandinavian University Books: Sweden. ISBN 91-24-27645-6.
- bbc.com: India: Cash reward offered for inter-caste marriages
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- thehindu.com: 'Caste no bar', in words if not in action