Genetic Evidence on the Origins of Indian Caste Populations
The European Union and India have upgraded their long-standing relationship to a strategic partnership in , acknowledging their common. Therefore, information on the genetic relationships of Indians to Europeans and geographically dependent (e.g., different between North and South Indian caste .. Neighbor-joining network of genetic distances among caste communities. Religion in India is characterised by a diversity of religious beliefs and practices. India is a Many other world religions also have a relationship with Indian spirituality, such as the Baha'i faith which Civil matters related to the community are dealt with by the Muslim Personal Law, and constitutional amendments in
Jainism is a non-theistic Indian religion and philosophical system originating in Iron Age India. As ofthere were Punjab is the spiritual home of Sikhs, and is the only state in India where Sikhs form a majority. There are also significant populations of Sikhs in neighbouring ChandigarhDelhi and Haryanawhich were historically part of Punjab. Muslims praying in a mosque in SrinagarJammu and Kashmir.
Islam is a monotheistic religion centered on the belief in one God and following the example of Muhammad ; It is the largest minority religion in India.
According to the census, India is home to million Muslims,  the world's third-largest Muslim population after those in Indonesia million  and Pakistan million. Christianity is a monotheistic religion centred on the life and teachings of Jesus as presented in the New Testament. It is the third largest religion of India, making up 2. Thomas is credited with introduction of Christianity in India.
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He arrived on the Malabar Coast in 52 AD. Parsis number around 61, in India. There are several tribal religions in India, such as Donyi-Polo. Collectively, all five datasets show a trend toward upper castes being more similar to Europeans, whereas lower castes are more similar to Asians.
What is India's caste system?
We conclude that Indian castes are most likely to be of proto-Asian origin with West Eurasian admixture resulting in rank-related and sex-specific differences in the genetic affinities of castes to Asians and Europeans. Shared Indo-European languages i. These nomadic migrants may have consolidated their power by admixing with native Dravidic-speaking e.
It is plausible that these West Eurasian immigrants also appointed themselves to predominantly castes of higher rank. However, archaeological evidence of the diffusion of material culture from Western Eurasia into India has been limited Shaffer Therefore, information on the genetic relationships of Indians to Europeans and Asians could contribute substantially to understanding the origins of Indian populations.
Previous genetic studies of Indian castes have failed to achieve a consensus on Indian origins and affinities. Various results have supported closer affinity of Indian castes either with Europeans or with Asians, and several factors underlie this inconsistency. First, erratic or limited sampling of populations has limited inferences about the relationships between caste and continental populations i. These relationships are further confounded by the wide geographic dispersal of caste populations.
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Genetic affinities among caste populations are, in part, inversely correlated with the geographic distance between them Malhotra and Vasuluand it is likely that affinities between caste and continental populations are also geographically dependent e. Second, it has been suggested that castes of different rank may have originated from or admixed with different continental groups Majumder and Mukherjee Third, the size of caste populations varies widely, and the effects of genetic drift on some small, geographically isolated castes may have been substantial.
Fourth, most of the polymorphisms assayed over the last 30 years are indirect measurements of genetic variation e. Finally, only rarely have systematic comparisons been made with continental populations using a large, uniform set of DNA polymorphisms Majumder To investigate the origin of contemporary castes, we compared the genetic affinities of caste populations of differing rank i. The genetic distances from major continental populations e.
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As one moves from lower to upper castes, the distance from Asians becomes progressively larger. The distance between Europeans and lower castes is larger than the distance between Europeans and upper castes, but the distance between Europeans and middle castes is smaller than the upper caste-European distance.
These trends are the same whether the Kshatriya and Vysya are included in the upper castes, the middle castes, or excluded from the analysis.
Among the upper castes the genetic distance between Brahmins and Europeans 0. Assuming that contemporary Europeans reflect West Eurasian affinities, these data indicate that the amount of West Eurasian admixture with Indian populations may have been proportionate to caste rank.