There is no term as untouchability in the Vedas or the Bhagavad Gita.
There are references to Varna denoting Disposition, Tendencies.
‘Chatur Varnam Maya Srushtam’ Bhagavad Gita- Dispositions are created by Me.
Here what Krishna says is that the effects/fruits of actions, though independent of Divine interventions, they need the Primary Principle, Brahman to operate; He Being the Saguna Manifestation of Brahman The Reality is responsible to the extent that it is applied universally and justly
Even in the Puranas, there is no word to match ‘Untouchable“
Normally people associate the term ‘Chandala‘ to denote Untouchables.
The attribute of Untouchable label was provided by the British.
This is a sweeping generalization that has no backing of any Religious text in the organisation of caste( another term of Portuguese origin imposed on India by the British.
The Attribute of being kept untouchable was avidly promoted by the British in their effort of dividing the people of India to facilitate their hold on India with their pronounced Policy of Divide and Rule.
“Untouchability is the social-religious practice of ostracizing a minority group by segregating them from the mainstream by social custom or legal mandate. The excluded group could be one that did not accept the norms of the excluding group and historically included foreigners, house workers, nomadic tribes, law-breakers and criminals and those suffering from a contagious disease. This exclusion was a method of punishing law-breakers and also protected traditional societies against contagion from strangers and the infected. A member of the excluded group is known as anUntouchable.”
“Chandala is a Sanskrit word for someone who deals with disposal of corpses, and is a Hindu lower caste, formerly considered untouchables. Currently it is a term used specifically in Indo-Aryan speaking regions of India. Sandala has become a swear word in the colloquial usage of the Tamil language. Chandal is a general derogatory slur used to refer to a filthy, mean or low person in North India.(wiki)
Note that this is not a definition, but a description being used currently after the acquisition of India by the British.
Till the Mogul period the usage was Sudra, denoting a group of people engaged in Physical work, with certain Dispositions.tendencies.
It was a tag used to denote this group and was often used colloquially to indicate one of uncouth practices, nothing more as is when we say’ he works like a Donkey’
The meaning varies ‘ depending on the context.
It may denote mindless application in carrying out a task or plain stupidity or to indicate their profession.
In earliest Tamil Literature the word is never found( Tamil is one of the earliest of world languages).
Nor the term Caste.
Another term that is widely used to denote caste is ‘Jati”
This term also does not indicate either caste or Untouchability
Read How this Poisonous concept was developed and promoted.
Caste In India
By John Henry Hutton
I am providing a Book a which one who knows the Indian Philosophy will refute authentically for it contains misquotes, half quotes and at times plain Lies.
You may refer this book.
I shall be providing more relevant Books as I go along.
You may get this at
- Caste Is By Tendencies Disposition Part I (ramanan50.wordpress.com)