The Karnataka State Brahmin Development Board, set up by the Yediyurappa government last year, has now launched schemes to help poor Brahmins. This includes two new schemes, ‘Arundhati’ and “Maitreyi’, which will provide monetary benefits to brides from the Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) among Brahmins.
According to the Board, the first scheme, Arundathi, will provide Rs 25,000 for Brahmin brides. The second scheme, Maitreyi, will assure a bond of Rs 3 lakh to Brahmin women who marry priests in the state. H.S. Sachidananda Murthy, chairman of the Board, said “Brahmins who come from economically backward sections of society will be eligible. Other conditions include that not only should the bride be from the Brahmin community, but it should also be her first marriage. The married couple will also have to give an undertaking that they would remain married for a specified period of time.”
According to the Brahmin board, around 500 girls of marriageable age and falling under the economically backward section have been identified for the Arundhati scheme. As part of the pilot programme, another 25 brides have been selected for the Maitreyi scheme.
The government has also launched an actionable scheme in which Rs 500 a month will be offered to nearly 4,000 individuals who show willingness to be trained in puja rituals and sandhya vandana (evening prayers). The age limit for this scheme is between 8-80 years. The Brahmin board itself was only set up by the government in July last year after the Modi government introduced the Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) reservation for upper castes.