Dalits Media Watch – English News Updates 11.11.15

Minor girl gangraped in UPThe Tribune


ASHA worker ‘gangraped’ in Varanasi – The Indian Express


Rape, molestation attempt shock city – The Times Of India


Father, girl die within hours of each other – The Indian Express


Ambedkar’s London house event: Opposition irked at not being invited – The Hindu


Transgenders treated unjustly, govt needs to change outlook, says Narendra Modi – The Indian Express


Express report prods Karnataka to act, end boycott of Dalit cook – The Indian Express


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The Tribune

 Minor girl gangraped in UP


 Muzaffarnagar, November 11

A 15-year-old Dalit girl was allegedly gangraped by three persons in the neighbouring Shamli district, the police said.

According to SHO Naresh Yadav, a case has been registered against three persons, two of whom have been identified as Digvijay Singh and Sumit.

The identity of the third accused is being ascertained, even as the victim has been sent for a medical examination, the police said, adding that the alleged incident took place in Ghasoli village under Kandhla police station.

The complaint lodged by the victim’s father said the minor girl had gone to fields to collect fodder when the three youths caught hold of her. It was alleged that the trio raped her and also threatened her against speaking to anybody about the episode.

The girl was found in an unconscious state in the fields by her parents. — PTI

The Indian Express

 ASHA worker ‘gangraped’ in Varanasi


The accused have also booked under the Scheduled Castes/ Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act as the victim was a Dalit.

By: Express News Service | Allahabad | Updated: November 11, 2015 12:13 am

A 40-year-old Accredited Social Health Activist (ASHA) worker was allegedly gangraped by two acquaintances while she was returning home from a primary health centre (PHC) at Badagaon in Varanasi district on Monday.

The medical examination report of the victim is awaited. Senior Asha workers brought the victim to the Badagaon police station and got a case registered against the two accused on charges of rape.

The accused have also booked under the Scheduled Castes/ Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act as the victim was a Dalit.

The victim told the police that the accused, whom she knew, raped her at a secluded place on the pretext of dropping her home, police said.

“The complainant said she had gone to the PHC near her village in connection with a delivery on Sunday evening.

The delivery occurred late night, thus, she stayed back at the PHC. On Monday morning, she was looking for a vehicle to go home when the two accused, residents of the same village, came there on a motorcycle,” said Badagaon Station Officer Shashi Bhushan Rai.

“They offered her a lift home. But instead of taking her home, they allegedly took her to a desolate place, where they gangraped her. The medical examination has been conducted and we are waiting for the findings to initiate further action,” he added.

The Times Of India

 Rape, molestation attempt shock city


Sayantanee Choudhury,TNN | Nov 10, 2015, 11.06 PM IST

Patna: The alleged rape of a 12-year-old dalit girl on the premises of the DM office in Patna and molestation attempt on a woman constable near Alamganj court in Patna City on Monday night sent shock waves through the state capital. These incidents may cause embarrassment to the Mahagathbandhan, which was called the proponent of ‘jungle raj’ by NDA during electioneering.

The rape survivor’s brother, Navin (name changed) said his sister had gone to buy milk from Bakarganj around 8pm on Monday when three youths on foot chased her. “Sonu Kumar and his two friends live in the same Sipahi Ghat locality where our family lives. They took her near the ADM office building on the collectorate premises where Sonu forced himself upon her. She narrated her ordeal to family members on returning home,” Navin told TOI and allged Sonu’s relatives assaulted his father when he went to him to complain about the crime.

According to Patna SSP Vikas Vaibhav, an FIR has been registered under various Sections of IPC and SC-ST Act and efforts are on to arrest the accused. The medical examination of the victim was done and her statement recorded before a judicial magistrate on Tuesday. “It’s not a case of gang rape. The rape survivor told police Sonu’s friends tried to prevent him from committing the crime,” the SSP said.

Meanwhile, two miscreants attempted to molest a Bihar Military Police (BMP) constable when she was returning to her base camp at Government Girls’ School in Alamganj locality after buying curd from a nearby shop on Monday evening. When she resisted, they hit her with the butt of a pistol and fled away.

SSP Vaibhav said the constable, whose BMP battalion was moved from its HQ in Rohtas to Patna, 150km away, for election duty, has been admitted to PMCH. Police will arrest the culprits soon, he said.

The NDA while stumping had repeatedly claimed the grand alliance win would lead to return of ‘jungle raj’ as its allies included the RJD which ruled the state for 15 years till 2005 when there was no rule of law. However, water resources department and IPRD minister Vijay Kumar Chaudhary rubbished attempts to link such stray incidents with the win of grand alliance of JD (U), RJD and Congress in the assembly election.

“One or two criminal incidents do not indicate return of jungle raj,” he said and added though a state cannot be crime free, ‘sushasan’ means the accused must be arrested and brought to justice.

The Indian Express

 Father, girl die within hours of each other


Starvation deaths suspected,

‘family was extremely poor’.

By: Express News Service | Allahabad | Published:November 8, 2015 12:49 am

A 38-YEAR-OLD man and his eight-year-old daughter have allegedly died of starvation at Geenj Pahari village in Allahabad district’s Bara sub-division within a few hours of each other.

The district administration, while denying prima facie that these were starvation deaths, has ordered a probe into the deaths. It has also provided food to the family of the diseased, who reportedly belong to the Musahar community.

Bara Sub-Divisional Magistrate Sushila said while the girl, Radha, died late Friday, her father Samar Bahadur succumbed early Saturday. Radha was the second of Bahadur’s five children.

As the news spread, the local and district administrations swung into action. Additional District Magistrate (Finance and Revenue) Ram Sahay Yadav rushed to the spot. Bahadur’s wife and other children were taken to a government hospital for a check-up and given food. “The family is poor and the man was suffering from some disease. We are ensuring that check-ups are done to see if any other family member is suffering from any ailment,” Yadav said.

District Magistrate Sanjay Kumar said: “Prima facie, death due to starvation is yet to be established. A postmortem report will shed more light on this. However, the deceased were living in poverty. The family had a ration card, but no antyodaya card. We are trying to ascertain the exact reasons behind the deaths. I have also ordered a magisterial inquiry. If any laxity is found on the part of officials, action will be taken.”

Yadav said Bahadur’s wife has told officials that he had suffered an injury last year after he fell. Since then, he never really recovered. “For the last month-and-a-half, he had fever off and on. A fortnight ago, they had gone to the Jasra Community Health Centre for treatment. Some local doctors were also referred but his condition was not improving,” he added.

“The girl suffered stomach pain on Friday morning and died in the evening. A postmortem will be conducted, which will establish the exact cause of death,” said Yadav.

Asked whether food materials were found in their house, Yadav said the family lived on day-to-day earnings.

“Sometimes, they got food from others. So, it is difficult to expect that they had stocked food materials. The fact is that the man was very ill and the family was very poor,” he claimed, adding that the family has been provided with 50 kg each of rice and wheat along with vegetables.

“Their case will be recommended for the family benefit scheme. Further, they will get ration and antyodaya cards. In this particular case, the person who died, used to shuttle between this village and Ghoorpur, where his in-laws live. Also, they would often go to other places for work… they made leaf-plates and broke stones in a quarry,” said Yadav.

The Hindu

 Ambedkar’s London house event: Opposition irked at not being invited



Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis is set to embark on a three-day visit to London with the Prime Minister to formally open a memorial for Dr. BR Ambedkar there even as Opposition parties targeted the government over not being invited for the event.

Mr. Fadnavis said the event is being organised by the British Consulate and will be a “small” one and, thus, the number of invitees are limited.

“The programme has been organised by the British Consulate with limited invitees. There will be no loudspeakers or firecrackers since it is a residential area. This will be a small event,” the chief minister, whose tour begins Thursday, told reporters here.

The house will be developed into an international memorial to the architect of the Indian Constitution, he said.

“(Ambedkar) was a scholar and a multi—faceted personality; he wrote some research papers during the period he stayed there (at the London house). Along with these research papers, artifacts will also be kept on the first and second floors of the Ambedkar house,” Fadnavis said.

He added that two students, selected through a scholarship every year, will also get a chance to reside on the third floor.

Meanwhile, the proposed event prompted an attack from the opposition Congress and NCP who said that the government should refrain from politicising such issues.

“What do you expect from these RSS-minded politicians when they did not invite us for ‘Bhoomipujan’ for the Dr Ambedkar memorial at Indu Mills, where there were no restrictions,” charged Congress leader Sachin Sawant.

“They should at least stop politicising issues related to national leaders. They should first understand Ambedkar before they hold programmes,” he added.

The Indian Express

 Transgenders treated unjustly, govt needs to change outlook, says Narendra Modi


“We will have to bring changes to the legal system, amend the rules. The government will have to change its outlook,” said Modi.

Written by Utkarsh Anand | New Delhi | Updated: November 10, 2015 12:59 am

Even as his government fights a battle in the Supreme Court against a 2014 judgment granting constitutional recognition to transgenders as a third gender, Prime Minister Narendra Modi Monday said the government needs to “change its outlook” towards them so they are not treated “unjustly”.

“Can you imagine how much apathy they (transgenders) face? The almighty has given them what he had to give but who are we to treat them unjustly? We will have to develop the system… We will have to bring changes to the legal system, amend the rules. The government will have to change its outlook,” said Modi in his first comments on the community since becoming  PM.

He added that efforts are required to ensure the well-being of all sections.

“We will need to assimilate everyone…include everyone. We will have to do something for everyone and when you take such an initiative, I believe there is a great advantage,” he said.

Modi was addressing an event to mark the Legal Services Day and a commendation ceremony, organised under the aegis of the National Legal Services Authority (NALSA).

Incidentally, it was on NALSA’s PIL that the Supreme Court had directed the government to treat transgenders as a socially and educationally backward class, entitled to quotas — just like OBCs — in educational institutions and for public appointments.

But soon after the NDA came to power, it moved the top court, questioning the “political” and “practical” ramifications of the judgment, which gave transgenders the right to have a family, apart from various other rights.

It sought clarification and modification of the judgment, resisting the direction to classify all transgenders as OBCs in a “suo motu” exercise. The government said they could be granted OBC status and consequent benefits only if the National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC) takes such a decision. This application, settled by Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, was moved in September 2014, four months after the judgment by the top court.

In January this year, a bench headed by Chief Justice H L Dattu agreed to examine the objections and issued notices to NALSA and all state governments. The case will now come up for hearing after notices are served to all states.

In his speech, Modi also urged the judiciary, which has regained its power to appoint judges through the collegium system after quashing of the National Judicial Appointments Commission, to give weightage to legal aid given by a candidate while considering him for appointment as a judge.

Union Minister D V Sadananda Gowda also favoured the idea of including legal aid as one of the criteria for elevating lawyers to the post of judges.

Modi said systems need to keep evolving to improve the justice delivery system.

“No institution can remain static. Changes are inevitable in tune with the times. There is a need to change the way we think. Old things are best and that is why we will not lay our hands on them is not the way,” said Modi, adding that stakeholders need to look beyond courts and Lok Adalats for disposal of cases.

Stressing that ensuring justice for the poor was important for India’s overall development, Modi said, “I believe in sabka saath, sabka vikas, and with that there must be sabka nyay.” The PM applauded CJI designate Justice T S Thakur, who is also the executive chairman of NALSA, for extending free legal services to thousands of people.

The Indian Express

 Express report prods Karnataka to act, end boycott of Dalit cook


 The report prompted the administration to act, and on Monday, several officials of the Directorate of Civil Rights Enforcement were rushed to the school to ensure students eat the food cooked by Radhamma.

Written by Santosh Kumar R B , Santosh Kumar RB | Bengaluru | Updated: November 10, 2015 11:08 am

On Monday, for the first time in over five months, food prepared by Radhamma — a Dalit cook at the Government Higher Primary School in Kagganahalli village in Karnataka’s Kolar district — was not rejected by students.


On November 6, The Indian Express had reported that since Radhamma’s appointment in February 2014, 100 students had left the school. The remaining 18 continued on the condition, laid down by their parents, that Radhamma not make the mid-may meal since she is a Dalit.

The report prompted the administration to act, and on Monday, several officials of the Directorate of Civil Rights Enforcement were rushed to the school to ensure students eat the food cooked by Radhamma.

 “I am shocked, I can’t believe students ate the mid-day meal prepared by me today. Our village head Shankar Reddy, who was responsible for the boycott, also ate the food. Many officials — I don’t know who are they — visited the village in an attempt to resolve the issue. Today, all of them ate, but I don’t know about the future,” Radhamma told The Indian Express.

Among those who visited the village were officials of the department of education and its mid-day meal scheme as well as police officials, including Additional Director General of Police for civil rights enforcement Bhaskar Rao.

“Sara Fathima, superintendent of police at the civil rights cell in Kolar, bought two new sarees and gave it to Radhamma through Reddy as a gesture of goodwill to end discrimination in the village,” said a police officer.

Rao said police had learnt that Reddy was allegedly responsible for discrimination against the cook. He was also accused in a case of alleged atrocity, filed by Dalit youth Nagabhushan, a year ago. “I made sit them together to eat a meal prepared by Radhamma. I ate it, too. Reddy assured me that he will handle the issue and make sure it does happen again. We will hold a meeting with villagers on November 18 to sort out the problems,” Rao said.

“The Karnataka government is not ignoring cases of discrimination in the state. Our quick response to the issue shows that we acted in time. It is also a lesson for other Radhammas in the state. We want to sent a message that somebody will stand them if anything goes wrong,” Rao said.

Nagabhushan said that Rao and the Kolar district Deputy Commissioner had instructed people in the village to make sure all students, who left after Radhamma was appointed as the head cook, return to the school. “The officials have given us a deadline of November 18 to bring back all students. The number of students may rise again at the school,” Nagabhushan said.

Kolar district Deputy Commissioner Dr K V Trilok Chandra also asked the Deputy Director of Public Instruction (DDPI) Rajanna to submit a report about the developments at the school. “The DDPI will investigate why parents got their wards transferred from the school to nearby schools,” an official said.

Mulabagal tehsildar Kanta Veeraiah, Kolar SP Dr Ajay Hilory, block education officer Devaraj and deputy director for the mid-day meal scheme Lakshmaiah were also present at the village Monday.

News monitored by AMRESH & AJEET

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