Dalits Media Watch – English News Updates 28.12.15

Attack on Dalits: two held, counter-case filed – The Hindu


Devadasi system: Home Ministry asks States to take strong action – The Hindu


Inquiry sought into removal of meat stalls run by Dalits – The Hindu


Changes in SC/ST bill timely – Deccan Herald


Cong ‘paid’ for ignoring Dalits – The Tribune


Dalits call for better deal in flagship schemes – The Hindu


Note: Please find attachment for DMW Hindi (PDF)

The Hindu

Attack on Dalits: two held, counter-case filed



Forty-eight hours after the attack by ‘upper caste’ men on Dalits of Turvihal village in Sindhanurtaluk of Raichur district, that left 20 persons, including a pregnant woman, injured, the police arrested two persons, Gurjeppa and Hanumantha, on Sunday evening. Superintendent of Police Chetan Singh Rathor confirmed the arrests.

Social activist Peer Bhasha meets a victim in Sindhanur hospital on Sunday.— PHOTO: SANTOSH SAGAR

“Most of the accused are absconding. I have clearly instructed the police officers to nab the persons at the earliest,” Mr. Rathor told The Hindu .

TimmannaChamanur, Sub-Inspector attached to Turvihal police station, said that efforts were on to nab the absconding accused. “Since we are busy with the election duty, we could not concentrate on the case. We will soon nab the absconders,” he said.

Counter-case filed

Meanwhile, following a counter-complaint lodged by one of the accused, the Turvihal police filed another FIR on Sunday against Dalit victims Shivaputrappa and others under Sections 324 (voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons or means), 143 (unlawful assembly), 506 (criminal intimidation) and 504 (intentional insult and provocation for breaking public peace) of Indian Penal Code.

Peer Bhasha, central coordinator, Institute for Study of Social Sciences, alleged that the police were not serious in arresting the accused. “The Turvihal police are bending to the pressure of ‘upper caste’ men,” he said. He took serious exception to the registering of an FIR against the Dalit victims and termed it “blackmail tactics”.

“The attackers have lodged a complaint against the victims to blackmail them and the police entertained it. They will soon offer mutual withdrawal of cases. It is nothing but injustice to the Dalits who were brutally assaulted,” he said.

The Hindu

Devadasi system: Home Ministry asks States to take strong action



Surprised by findings that the ancient Devadasi system continues to exist in some parts of the country, the Home Ministry has asked all States to take strong action against those involved in the heinous practice which is against dignity of women.

In a letter to all States and Union territories, the Home Ministry has said the Devadasi system is inhuman and one of the most heinous practices against women degrading them to the lowest level.

It directed that the laws against it be implemented “in letter and spirit” and steps taken to ensure that the victims are rehabilitated.

The Ministry said it has come to notice through various PILs and media news that the Devadasi system still existed in certain parts of the country, especially in “Beriya” and “Nat” communities in the name of religious practices.

The Hindu

Inquiry sought into removal of meat stalls run by Dalits



Dalit Liberation Movement-Tamil Nadu has forwarded a petition to National Commission for Scheduled Castes seeking an inquiry into the removal of meat stalls run by around 20 Dalits on the weekly market ground owned by Kangayam Municipality. S. Karuppaiah, State joint general secretary of the Movement, said the municipal officials did not give any notice before coming on the Christmas day to remove the stalls.

The people had been running the stalls for many years and now their livelihood was affected, he added. When contacted, Kangayam municipal chairman G. Manimaran told The Hindu that the administration asked them to vacate the place only with the aim of preserving hygiene in the area.

“Slaughtering of animals had started taking place there which was affecting the hygiene on the market ground where vegetables and groceries were also sold. We already told them many times to move from the ground,” he said.

Mr. Manimaran added that the administration had informed them of the willingness to provide an alternative place for the sale of meat. “But, they will not be allowed to slaughter the animals at that place,” he said.

Deccan Herald

Changes in SC/ST bill timely


December 28, 2015, DHNS

“Any economic, social boycott of SCs/STs is an offence now.”

That otherwise squabbling political parties got together to pass the SC/ST (Prevention of
Atrocities) Amendment Bill last week in the RajyaSabha shows there are certain issues that go beyond petty differences. There was enough justification as atrocities against scheduled castes (SCs) and scheduled tribes (STs) have jumped, especially since 2009, according to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB). In 2009, there were 33,594 cases (of atrocities against SCs) and 5,425 cases (of atrocity cases against STs). The concomitant figures for 2014 were 47,064 and 11,451. Clearly, the pre-amended law was not working or else it was not being implemented strictly.

The amendments, at least on paper, seem to have made the law far more effective as it has plugged loopholes in the existing law. For instance, the amended bill makes it an offence to garland SCs/STs with footwear, forcing these communities to dispose of or carry human and animal carcasses besides barring manual scavenging. Women belonging to the two communities have to be treated with utmost respect and cannot be pushed into the devadasi practice, still prevalent in several parts of the country. What makes the amendments look promising is that any social or economic boycott of SCs/STs is recognised as an offence. Hopefully, this will stall and discourage abhorrent practices among dominant communities that include shunning of SCs/STs if they are seen to be defiant or raise their voices against injustice. The amendments come at a time when, despite the nation’s overall journey into modernity, the SC/ST communities are still treated in the most terrible manner by sizeable sections of people across the country. Boycotting mid-day meals because they were cooked by dalits, stoning a bridegroom because he dared to ride a horse during his wedding, stripping dalits and beating them figure in recent instances of atrocities against SC/ST communities.

 There are some who say that the atrocities law was being misused and that the amendments could propel more of it. While it may be true that misuses occur, overall, there can be no denying that the police and the judiciary must tighten the system to speed up prosecuting the guilty and adjudicating the crime quickly. Ultimately, the law needs to work as a deterrent and for that to happen, the guilty must be made to pay the price, without delay. Else, any amendment will lose its efficacy and remain confined on paper. Now that the amended bill has been passed and will become law shortly, the government must do some brainstorming and find ways of implementing it to the hilt.

The Tribune

Cong ‘paid’ for ignoring Dalits


Party workers highlight issues before Ahmad

Nitish SharmaTribune News ServiceKurukshetra, December 27

Scheduled Castes leaders of the Congress today complained to All India Congress Committee general secretary Shakeel Ahmad that they were ignored by senior Congress leaders when the party was in power.

AICC general secretary Shakeel Ahmad, AICC secretary Asha Kumari, HPCC chief Ashok Tanwar and several other party leaders were in the district to attend the two-day SC Congress leaders’ conclave on Sunday.

During the concluding session, the SC leaders said their interests were ignored and no major step was taken for the welfare of Dalits during the Congress regime that led to its fall in the state.

Rajat, an activist, said, “After the Mirchpur incident, a series of cases of atrocities against Dalits came to light but the government failed to act properly. The atrocities against Dalits and government inaction were the prime reasons behind the Congress’s defeat in the last elections.”

He said, “If Rahul Gandhi can come and visit the Dalits who have faced atrocities then why the local Congress leaders can’t. There was an atmosphere of Jats verses non-Jats and leaders feel that they will suffer loss if they will go against Jats. The same thing is still happening.”

RajkumarKataria, another worker, said, “The Congress failed to give representation to Dalits during its regime. Instead of just doing the formality, the right representation and respect should be given to the community.”

Assuring the workers of presenting their views before AICC president Sonia Gandhi, Shakeel Ahmad said, “All complaints and suggestions have been noted and they will be incorporated in the party’s Dalit agenda.”

Targeting the BJP and the RSS, Ahmad said, “The BJP has no role model to present while the RSS never participated in the struggle for freedom. It has been doing politics in the name of Saradar Patel and Ambedkar. While Sardar Patel had banned the RSS after the killing of Mahatma Gandhi, the BJP never followed Ambedkar.”

Talking to mediapersons, Ahmad said, “Workers have shown their resentment. Their views will be presented and will be kept in mind when the Congress will come to power.” HPCC chief Ashok Tanwar said, “Workers have presented their suggestions and a resolution has been passed. More such conclaves will be organised in future.”

The Hindu

Dalits call for better deal in flagship schemes



If the business gharanas of today have enjoyed government patronage, when will our turn come, asks MilindKamble, chairperson of the Dalit Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DICCI). He will pose the question to Prime Minister NarendraModi when he presides over the chamber’s 10th anniversary celebrations on Tuesday.

The chamber will seek a greater share and strategic partnership in the “Make in India”, Digital India and the Smart Cities flagship programmes of the government.

More than 1,200 entrepreneurs from all over the world, especially from Africa, the UAE, Japan and South Africa, will congregate in a show of strength at the function at VigyanBhavan, being held in partnership with the Union Social Justice and Empowerment Ministry.

The richest among them will be Rajesh Saraiya from Ukraine, who has established a name in the steel business with offices in the U.K., the UAE, China, Russia and India. Mr. Kamble says Mr. Modi’s participation is special as the Prime Minister has not attended events by the Confederation of Indian Industry or the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry. While the government has mandated that PSUs must procure 20 per cent of goods, services and products from small and medium enterprises, four per cent of it has to be from Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe units. DICCI expects Mr. Modi to make big announcements.

News monitored by AMRESH & AJEET



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