• Ashish Saxena Central University of Allahabad, Allahabad, India
  • Vijaylaxmi Saxena Calliope Law College, University of Jammu


Dawning of a new century has not been accompanied by the eclipse of religiosity among individuals and in public culture rather because of disenchantment with our increasingly rationalized society, religion continues to provide meaning and intertwine daily social, economic, and political activity of human world. Alongside, the popular religiosity is an important contemporary trend encompassing the world religions. The study of religion as a force in people’s adaptation to and creation of landscape is certainly a proper and important endeavor in the field of sociology of religion. The present work aims at exploring the spatial expansion of subaltern groups in urban setting; socio-religious mobility among lower caste Hindus and the creation of sacred and secular space vis-à-vis higher Hindu caste groups in a sacred traditional Indian city. The broader findings reflect the creation of religious spaces and also the lower caste Hindu identity assertion through these places. The modern forces and the pace of urbanization had diluted the air-tight compartmentalized segregation of the weaker section and paved them way for secular living with the other high caste groups. It had not only brought democratic dwelling space but also provided them dignity with the new level of assertion.

Keywords: Religion, Socio-religious space, Weaker Sections, Identity Politics


Ahamed, Aijazuddin. 1999. Social Geography, New Delhi: Rawat Publication. Census Report of India, 1911. Jammu & Kashmir, GOI, 1911,
Charak, S.D.S, 1979. History and Culture of Himalayan States Vol. VIII, Delhi: Light and Life Publisher, Delhi.
Chidester D and Linenthal E T (eds.). 1995. American sacred space, Bloomington IN: Indiana University Press.
Deffontaines, P. 1953. ‘The religious factor in human geography’, Diogenes 2.
Duncan, James S and Nancy, G. Duncan. 1980. ‘Residential Landscapes and Social worlds: A Case Study of Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh’ in David E. Sopher (Ed.) An Exploration of India: Geographical Perspective on Society and Culture, New York: Cornell University Press.
Fenn, Richard.K (ed.). 2001. Sociology of Religion, U.K: Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
Gupta, N.S. & N.C.Prabhakar. 1988. Socio-Economic Development of J&K, Jammu: JayKay Book House.
Haynes, Jeff. 1997. ‘Religion, Secularisation and Politics: A Postmodern Conspectus’, Third World Quarterly, Vol. 18, No. 4 (Sep., 1997),
Isaac, E. 1963. ‘Myths, cults and livestock’, Diogenes 41:
Jevtic, Miroljub, Political science and religion, Politics and Religion Journal, Vol. 1, No. 1, 2007.
Jevtic Miroljub, Religion and Relations between Genders, Politics and Religion Journal, Vol. 2, No.1, 2008.
Kong L. 2001. “Mapping ‘new’ geographies of religion: politics and poetics in modernity”, Progress in Human Geography 25(2).
Kothari, Rajni. 1970. Politics in India, New Delhi: Orient Longman.
Kurtz L 1995. Gods in the global village: the world’s religions in sociological perspective, Thousand Oaks CA: Pine Forge Press.
Levine, G.J. 1986. ‘On the Geography of Religion’, Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, New Series, Vol. 11, No. 4 (1986),
Noble, Allen G. and Ramesh Dhussa. 1982. ‘Ethnic Neighbourhoods in Indian cities: The Paras of Dumka and the Bengali Tola of Bhagalpur’, in Allen G. Noble
and Ashok K. Dutt (Eds.), India: Cultural Patterns and Processes, Colorado: Westview Press.
Pernau, Margrit. 2005. ‘Multiple identities and communities; Re-conceptualizing religion’, in Religion Pluralism in South Asia and Europe, Jamal Malik & Helmut Reifeld (eds.), UK: Oxford University Press,
Portier, Philippe. 2011. ‘Religion and Democracy in the Thought of Jürgen Habermas’, Springer Science & Business Media, LLC; Soc (2011.) 48.
Raj, Mulkh. 2003. Local community leader. Interview by authors, Buta Nagar, Jammu,14 March.
Raychandhari, H.C.1972. Political History of Ancient India, Calcutta: University of Calcutta Press.
Saxena, Ashish. 2009 a. ‘Shifting Manifestations: Scheduled Castes in Jammu and Kashmir’, Jammu: Saksham Books International.
----- 2009 b. ‘Religion, Caste and Community: Identity Substantiation through
‘Maile’ Congregations among the Dogras of Jammu and Kashmir’ in ‘Politics and Religion’ Center for Studies of Religion and Religious Tolerance, Serbia; issue no.1, Volume III.
Sharma, K.D.1993. “Social Morphology of Himalayan Towns” in Aijazuddin Ahmad (Ed.) Social Structure and Regional Development: A Social Geography Perspective, Jaipur: Rawat Publication.
Sharma, Kanchan.1995. Socio-Political Aspiration of J&K People, Jammu: Akshay Publisher.
Sharma, S.C. 1985. ‘Socio-religious activities of the Arya Samaj in J&K State’ in MD University Research Journal, Vol-3, No. 2, October.
Smith D M. 1999. ‘Geography, community, and morality’, Environment and Planning, A (31).
Soodan,S.S. 1997. Jammu under the Reign of Maharaja Hari Singh, Jammu: Vinod publication.
Sopher, D. 1967. Geography of religions, NJ: Englewood Cliffs.
Wakhlu, Somnath. 1998. The Rich Heritage of J&K-Studies in Art, Architecture, History and Culture of the Region, New Delhi: Gyan Publishing House.
Whelam,Y. 2002. ‘The construction and deconstruction of a colonial landscape: monuments to British monarchs in Dublin before and after Independence’, Journal of Historical Geography, 28 (4).
Young I M .1990a. ‘The ideal of community and the politics of difference’, in Nicholson L J (ed): Feminism/ postmodernism, London: Routledge.
----. 1990b. Justice and the politics of difference, Princeton University Press, Princeton NJ.