Dalits Media Watch – English News Updates 04.02.16


Assault on Dalit Woman Panchayat Member in Kollam: Action Sought – The new Indian express


The extraordinary life of a Dalit woman sarpanch – The hindu


 “Higher education campuses are anti-Dalit” – The hindu


Four get double life term for dalit’s murder – The times of india


Dalit Students on Hunger Strike, Two Faint – The new Indian express


Mirchpur: Dalits to challenge acquittal of juveniles – The times of india


Dalit students of IIMC complain about casteist comments, I&B to probe – The Indian Express


Criminal Case Filed Against Professor Who Harassed and Insulted Dalit PhD Scholar In Kerala – Huffington Post


Please Watch:

The Delhi Police is in the line of fire after a video surfaced showing men in police uniform, and even in civil dresses, ruthlessly beating up some students.

  1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bMWUixsDhWQ

  2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NREoxzAISV4

  3. Media Manthan @ RajyaSabha



The new Indian express

Assault on Dalit Woman Panchayat Member in Kollam: Action Sought


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Bharateeya Mahila Morcha has demanded strong action against the miscreants who  assaulted a Dalit woman panchayat member in the Neduvathur panchayat in Kollam district.  A few days ago the CPM and CPI worker  attacked S Manjusha, member, 4th ward of the panchayat during the grama sabha and insulted her using casteist slur.

BJP and Mahila Morcha leaders said no action has been taken by the police. Manjusha’s husband Biju Das who tried to rescue her was seriously injured. BJP state general secretary Sobha Surendran and Mahila Morcha state president Renu Suresh told ‘Express’ that it was unfortunate that no action has been initiated against the guilty.

Sobha Surendran told ‘Express’ she could not reach Neduvathur as she was a permanent member of the Vimochana Yatra led by Kummanam Rajasekharan. She said they would organise strong protests against the incident in association with Bharateeya Dalit Morcha and other frontal organisations of the BJP. “It is shocking that an elected woman panchayat member had to face castiest discrimination and physical assault in the grama sabha at the hands of the CPM and CPI workers. It should be seen as an assault on womanhood. Those who trigger passion in the name of death of a youth in Hyderabad, have not made any comment on the attack of a Dalit woman panchayat member in the so-called politically conscious Kerala,” Sobha said.

“The police have not arrested the guilty so far. No cultural leader has come forward to condemn the attack on a Dalit panchayat member during a grama sabha meet. CPM’s doublespeak on  Dalit issues has come to fore again,” said Renu Suresh. Manjusha was elected to Neduvathur panchayat from Kottathala, a Communist stronghold. Renu Suresh said as  Manjusha’s victory was a serious jolt to the Communists and they unleashed a vilification campaign against her right from the beginning. When the grama sabha met and 120 voters of the ward were enlisted as members of the Development Council of the ward, a five-member team arrived and asked them to stop the proceedings till their leaders also arrived. When Manjusha objected to their demand she was attacked.

communist stronghold

Manjusha was elected to Neduvathur panchayat from Kottathala, a Communist stronghold where the house of Communist Martyr Kottathala Surendran is located

The hindu

The extraordinary life of a Dalit woman sarpanch


Nauroti would hardly draw any attention from a passerby except maybe her traditional pallu over the head might draw a curious stare in South India.

A Dalit who never went to school, after being elected sarpanch of Harmada village in Kishangarh Tehsil in Ajmer district of Rajasthan, she trained the government employee panchayat secretary on how to operate a computer and use it in village administration.

Nauroti, former sarpanch of Harmada Panchayat in Ajmer district of Rajasthan.— Photo: C.V. Subrahmanyam

“I carried the computer and printer into the office and used it for regular communication and also take out printouts of notices,” the septuagenarian Ms Nauroti told The Hindu on the sidelines of the recently held 20th National Congress of NFIW. She also trained a large number of village women in use of computers.

As a sarpanch she managed to overcome the opposition from the dominant Jat community and deliver benefits to the people of the village. A burial ground that was being used as a dumping yard for decades was cleared and a compound wall built around it. She also had a borewell sunk there.

As sarpanch she resumed the land allocated for government health centre and had it fenced for getting the health centre built there. She finished her five year term leaving a surplus of Rs 13 lakh in the panchayat account.

Before becoming a sarpanch as a wage labour she led the mobilisation of 700 labourers and ensured payment of minimum wages, she recalled.

She has been an active member of the Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sanghatan from 1981 and participated in the right to information campaign in Rajasthan. It is this campaign that laid the foundation for the Right to Information (RTI) Act passed by the Union government in 2005.

Her story is well known across borders and she has visited China, Germany and the USA among others and is scheduled to travel to Pakistan soon. She reads Hindi newspapers everyday and even logs onto the Internet.

The fact that she has never gone to school she has been disqualified from contesting panchayat elections in 2015. She has filed a writ in the High Court contesting her disqualification on the grounds of not having school education

The hindu

“Higher education campuses are anti-Dalit”


There was a growing impression among the minorities and public that higher education campuses in the country were slowly turned anti-Dalit, said speakers at a seminar on ‘Educational institutions and caste discrimination’, organised here by Evidence, an NGO, on Wednesday.

After the change of guard at the Centre, the situation had worsened and on many campuses, Dalit students were not allowed to express their views, they said.

Focus shifted

In the case of Rohith Vemula, a research scholar at the University of Hyderabad, the focus had now shifted from his death to whether he was a Dalit or not.

Several politicians, including Union Ministers Sushma Swaraj and Smriti Zubin Irani, were keen on maintaining that Rohith was not a Dalit, they claimed.


The Ministers were trying to mislead the public through a section of media that all was well on campuses. But, it was not so.

To create awareness and also to bring out the truth, the civil society had to wake up and deeply look into the facts behind the tragic circumstances which forced the research scholar to take the extreme step.

The speakers urged the higher educational institutions to set up monitoring and grievance redressal committees on their campuses.

Evidence executive director A. Kathir said that at a time when many Dalits found it tough even to get admission to schools in backward districts, rising to the level of a research scholar in a renowned university had to be commended. Many universities and institutions of higher education were controlled by politicians indirectly through student unions.

Stop atrocities

The government should stop these atrocities to prevent recurrence of such incidents.

Advocate Henri Tiphagne, writer Kavinmalar, Semmalar and Joshua Isaac spoke. Dravidar Viduthalai Kazhagam president Kolathur Mani presided. Students, advocates, social workers participated in the seminar.

The times of india

Four get double life term for dalit’s murder


Aurangabad: The Nanded district court has ordered double life term for four persons in connection with the murder of a dalit youth in 2014.

District judge Anand Yawalkar awarded one life term for the murder and the other under a provision of the SC/ST Atrocities Act, 1989. Though the convicts would have to undergo the two sentences concurrently, they would have to pay the fines slapped with both the offences, Nanded additional government pleader Vinayak Bhosale said.

He said communal tension was reported for a few days in parts of Nanded city following a murder on October 5, 2014. Two days later around 4pm , Sadanand Hari Jondhale (30) was passing through Bilalnagar near the Gadipura area when four youths aged between 19 and 23 years pounced on him.

They first showered him with fists and kicks, assaulted him with sharp weapons and fled the spot, leaving Jondhale bleeding. Some people tried to help Jondhale and were about to take him to hospital in an authorickshaw when a police team reached the spot. The police took him to hospital where doctors declared him dead on arrival.

Witnesses Mohammad Razzaq Rizwan Khan and Mohammad Rafiq Yosuf had said in the presence of the judicial magistrate first class (JMFC) that the murder was the fallout of the communal tension and pointed out the involvement of the four people. The police then arrested Mohammad Saddam alias Gajani Abdul Razzaq, Syed Shareq alias Raju Syed Jafar, Zahedbaig Mirza Khaja Baig and Zubail Bag Mirza Khaja Baig.

The police investigated the murder and submitted a charge sheet before the court. The witnesses, however, turned hostile during the course of trail, Bhosale said.

Following the trial, the district and sessions judge, Yawalkar, found the four guilty of murdering the Dalit youth and sentenced them to life imprisonment under Section 302 of the Indian Penal Code. He also awarded life term under Section 3 (2) (5) of the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989, besides slapping a fine of Rs 1,000 each for both the offences. The accused were in prison since their arrest in October 2014.

The new Indian express

Dalit Students on Hunger Strike, Two Faint


PUDUKKOTTAI: Two inmates of SC students hostel of HH The Rajah’s Arts College in the town fainted on Wednesday morning and were later hospitalised while the hostel students were observing a hunger strike alleging poor quality of food.

Sources said 262 students studying in HH The Rajah’s Government Arts College have been staying in the government SC students hostel attached to the Adi Dravidar welfare department.

Meanwhile, on Tuesday night around 100 inmates gathered squatted on the road with plates alleging poor quality of food served in the hostel.

Speaking to media, they complained,”the quality of food supplied to us is very poor. For the last one year, we were not distributed soap and oil. There is no separate dining hall in the hostel and we are also facing mosquito menace.”

“Despite several petitions, the hostel warden and other officials did not pay attention to our pleas.”

A team of revenue officials led by Ravichandran, tahsilthar and police held talks with the students. Later they withdrew their protest.

But a section of students refused to take food and continued the hunger strike till Wednesday morning. Two inmates – Hariharan and Vignesh – fainted in the hostel on Wednesday morning and they were rushed to Pudukkottai Government Hospital.

The times of india

Mirchpur: Dalits to challenge acquittal of juveniles


CHANDIGARH: A day after a juvenile was sentenced to three-year jail term in the infamous Mirchpur caste violence case, victim families have decided to challenge the acquittal of four other minors in the case.

The Juvenile Justice Board (JJB) on Monday had awarded three years imprisonment to a juvenile after he was found guilty for murder, assault and dacoity.

Lawyer for dalits hit by the violence, Rajat Kalsan claimed that that there were sufficient evidence against the juveniles acquitted by the board. “The witnesses had recognized all the five accused in the court but they could reveal the name of only one accused, who has now been convicted. But the evidence collected by the police also establish the guilt of four acquitted accused,” said Kalsan.

However, counsel for the accused, Dharmender Goyat claimed that the judgement related to acquittal of the four accused was well reasoned as per the material available on the file. “There is no legal substance for the purpose of guilt of the four juveniles. There were general allegations against the accused not the specific,” he said.

Goyat also said that they would challenge the conviction of fifth accused also. “He should be given benefit of doubt,” he added.

A 70-year-old dalit Tara Chand, along with his physically-challenged daughter Suman, 18, were killed during the attack on their houses by the upper caste men in Mirchpur village of Hisar district on April 21, 2010. The incident had taken place after a dalit’s dog had barked upon upper caste youths. A commission set up to probe the violence had blamed the police for failing in its duty to act swiftly.

The Indian Express

Dalit students of IIMC complain about casteist comments, I&B to probe


A student of English Journalism at the institute has accused a fellow student of making derogatory remarks which he says has caused “severe distress” amidst the Dalit and Adivasi communities.

THE INFORMATION and Broadcasting Ministry has ordered a probe into allegations of derogatory remarks against Dalits and Adivasis posted on social media by a student at the prestigious Indian Institute of Mass Communication (IIMC).

After some students raised the issue with IIMC authorities, one of them has approached the National Commission of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes with a formal petition.

“The matter was brought to our notice on Tuesday by an IIMC official. Joint secretary Mihir Kumar Singh, who is also the administrative joint secretary for IIMC, has been asked to inquire into it and submit a report to the ministry by February 10,” a senior I&B official told The Indian Express.

In his complaint to the national commission, PrashantKanojia — a student of English Journalism at the institute — has accused a fellow student of making derogatory remarks which he says caused “severe distress” amid Dalits and Adivasis.

“Dalits were abused in these Facebook posts. And then, there were students who started supporting these abusive posts. We filed a complaint with the IIMC authorities but realised that the institute does not have a mechanism in place to deal with something like this,” Kanojia said.

The institute approached the ministry after 17 Dalit and Adivasi students wrote to its authorities asking for “sensitisation classes” to prevent the spreading of “ill will” against SC/ST students.

In the aftermath of the suicide of Dalit scholar RohithVemula in the University of Hyderabad, SC/ST students of IIMC had spoken against caste discrimination and expressed solidarity with the students. As a result, they said, they were subjected to “derogatory” and “casteist” remarks, along with an abusive Facebook post by a fellow student.

“In the Facebook post, the student alleged that those speaking on Dalit issues were politicising the issue and were responsible for perpetuating the caste system by taking advantage of reservations, which are given as “bheekh” (alms) to the lower castes,” said a student, and a signatory to the letter.

The students said they wrote two letters — dated January 29 and February 1 — to IIMC authorities as well as the Ministry of Social Justice, and Ministry of Tribal Affairs, asking for sensitisation classes.

In their letter to the IIMC administration on February 1, the aggrieved students had pointed out that social media had been flooded with hashtags supporting the “perpetrator” and that “freedom of speech and expression” was being used to defend the abusive and derogatory remarks.

“Comments are being passed and remarks made aloud when the students pass through the corridors in the college and hostels. We would be forced to take legal recourse against our will, if things continue the same way because of the prevailing tension we aren’t able to focus on studies (sic),” reads the letter.

“We do not want any punitive action except a public apology and undertaking against the person writing or spreading such messages, we would beg to request a slot in the academic timetable to be allocated for sensitizing of all the students by experts in the field of Caste/Tribe reality and affirmative action, to promote amicability and inclusivity on campus,” it reads.

IIMC officials said that “quick and proactive” actions had been taken as soon as the letter was received. “We’ve put forward a proposal to set up a committee to look into the matter and deliberate on the demands of the students. There were meetings of the faculty called immediately, and both parties were heard. The students who had complained also seemed to be satisfied with the steps taken,” said a senior official, who did not wish to be named.

A faculty member said the student who posted the derogatory comment has apologised. “He kept saying that that he was from Varanasi and that the use of abusive language was common there. But the point is that this not about one person, there are others like him who can’t seem to digest Dalits and Adivasis speaking up for themselves,” said the faculty member.

Huffington Post

Criminal Case Filed Against Professor Who Harassed and Insulted Dalit PhD Scholar In Kerala


HuffPost Staff

Posted: 03/02/2016 09:56 IST Updated: 03/02/2016 09:57 IST

Deepa M Mohan, a PhD student at Mahatma Gandhi University in Kottayam, Kerala was first denied entry into the university laboratory. She alleged that once when she insisted she enter the laboratory, she was locked inside it. NandakumarKalarickal, the joint director of the International and Inter University Centre for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, where Mohan was working, was reportedly behind these acts of aggression\\against Mohan.

And what was the reason for trying to scuttle Mohan’s career? Her caste. Mohan alleges that she faced such tribulations in the university as she was a Dalit.

She had filed a complaint against the university Syndicate nearly a year back, but nothing materialised for long time. However, the Newsminute reports that the university has finally taken action against the accused professor and initiated a probe against him. He has been suspended from his position and will be terminated if found guilty.

“The syndicate meeting on Monday has recommended that a criminal case be filed against the professor under relevant sections of the SC/ST (Atrocities Prevention) Act. The professor has been asked to explain his conduct, failing which he would be terminated. For now, he has been removed from the post of Joint Director,” reported Newsminute.

“I am happy that the syndicate took this decision after two years of my struggle. For almost a year, my travails at the university had become news, but then people lost interest. I was scared I would not get justice. But my recent Facebook post asking SFI President Sivadasan on why they never helped me went viral and stirred the controversy again. I did not want anyone to be punished, my only demand was that I should be allowed to study there,” Mohan told Newsminute.

Speaking to Outlook on February 1 this year Mohan had said that she was relentlessly harassed and insulted in front of fellow students once she started her PhD in the university. She had completed her MPhil from the same institution. Mohan, who lives with her four-year-old daughter in a PG in Kottayam, admits that she had even broken down in class one day. She had also been branded a Maoist by the professor. None of the students came to her support either. She didn’t have a chair to sit and had to work out of the library.

“Once when I made a PowerPoint presentation, he accused me of plagiarism in front of my fellow students. I stopped and cried because it was my work. Though everyone knew the truth, no one came to my support. My accuser had powerful Left connections. My family has been Left-leaning, so I felt betrayed. Then began the slow harassment. The (then) joint director would ensure I didn’t get study material and locked me out of the lab. I was once locked in the building. I am a heart patient, so I called the police to rescue me. After continuous harassment, I met the pro-VC, and learnt that the joint director had said he wouldn’t show any favour to Dalits because that would lower the discipline of the centre,” she writes.

The harassment didn’t stop at the university. A group called Prottam, which Mohan says she had no connection with, put up posters in the university declaring that the professor who was harassing her will be killed. Mohan says that was a ploy to frame and trap her. The police swooped down on her in no time and started investigating her family, her husband who works in the Gulf and even went through her phone records of the past ten years. They couldn’t find anything suspicious about her.

News monitored by AMRESH & AJEET

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