Dalits Media Watch – News Updates 17.02.16

Activist arrested for assaulting Thane deputy municipal commissioner – Mid Day


Provide job to sister of Dalit who was murdered: Madras HC – The Hindustan Times


Student circulates defaming image of Dalits, outrage in Chennai college – The News Minute


Rohith Vemula suicide: HRD Ministry’s fact-finding committee slams Hyderabad Central University – The Economic Times


A modern airport with manual scavenging – The Hindu


Dalit murder: Two more suspects held – The Times Of India


Dalits seek 35% representation in Congress party at various levels – The Times Of India


Please Watch:

Com. Sucheta De on the idea that is JNU !!



 Activist arrested for assaulting Thane deputy municipal commissioner


By PTI |Posted 6 hours

 Thane: The police today arrested an activist for allegedly attacking a deputy municipal commissioner at the Thane Municipal Corporation. 

Subhash Thombre, 49, the accused, claimed to be a Shiv Sena leader and a social activist, Naupada police said here. 

Police registered a case against him for assault, and also under the SC,ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. 

The incident took place when additional municipal commissioner Ashok Rankhamb and DMC Sandeep Malvi were hearing Thombre regarding a right to information isssue.

Thombre allegedly lost his cool during the hearing and started absuding Malvi before assaulting him, the complaint said.

The Hindustan Times

 Provide job to sister of Dalit who was murdered:

Madras HC


 PTI, Madurai Updated: Feb 17, 2016 10:36 IST

The Madras high court on Tuesday directed Tamil Nadu government to provide a job to the sister of a Dalit who was hacked to death near Thuraiyur in this district in April last year, as per the SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities Act.

Justice T Hariparanthaman, allowing a plea by Sudha, the sister of Muthukumar, directed the government to provide job to her within four weeks.

Four persons have been arrested in connection with the April 26, 2015 murder and cases registered against them.

Earlier, Muthukumar’s father Palanisamy had sought a job for his daughter and submitted a petition to Tiruchirapalli District Collector on May 8, 2015.

Sudha submitted that the collector had not taken any action and hence she was constrained to move court.

The judge said that as per the Act, a relative of the murder victim should be given a job within three months or land to take up farming and a house and also Rs 1000 pension.

As per the Act, government should provide a job for the petitioner, who is the sister of the victim.

Besides the superintendent of police had also recommended a job for Sudha on Jan 27, 2016. Hence government should take steps and appoint her, the judge said.

The News Minute

 Student circulates defaming image of Dalits, outrage in Chennai college


The college management has promised to resolve the issue.

TNM Staff| Wednesday, February 17, 2016 – 09:00

The YMCA College of Physical Education in Nandanam has initiated disciplinary proceedings against a student for posting an image on WhatsApp on Thursday allegedly showing Dalit students in a bad light, according to The New Indian Express.

The image shows Dalit students sleeping while others are seriously preparing for their examinations. It was posted on last Thursday. “On a sarcastic note, this image suggested that the reservation system supported us even if we didn’t take our exams seriously,” Abhu, a Dalit student told TNIE.

The image created uproar amongst the Dalit students but the senior students controlled the situation in the campus. Students are claiming that the Dalit students are discriminated by some of the staff and students on various matters.

Abhu told TNIE, “An assistant professor handling classes for post-graduate students overtly asked other community students not to sit near me in classes. Despite complaining this with the management and local police, no action was taken against him.”

The students conducted a protest on Monday and the college management has promised to resolve the issue.

The College Correspondent and Secretary, AJ Manohar said that a one-man committee has been constituted and the findings will be submitted before the college discipline committee, as reported in TNIE. 

 The Economic Times

 Rohith Vemula suicide: HRD Ministry’s fact-finding committee slams Hyderabad Central University


 By Anubhuti

Vishnoi, ET Bureau | 17 Feb, 2016, 02:52 AM IST


NEW DELHI: The report of the HRD ministry’s fact­finding team on the Rohith Vemula suicide has slammed the university administration for a flawed inquiry process that led to the expulsion of the five students associated with the Ambedkar Student Association. It also underlined the “academic demoralisation and social isolation” on campus. ET has accessed the report which was under wraps. It had the following to say:

 Gaps in the Inquiry Process

 The report says that there are “…gaps in several processes, including the report of the senior medical officer of the University of Hyderabad, the Proctorial Board inquiry of events of 3rd/4th August, 2015”.

The medical report has been cited by the ABVP member who ran into a conflict with these ASA students to claim that he was manhandled by them.

 It notes that even the sub committee of the Executive Council (EC) “which was tasked with having an in­depth and comprehensive view on the findings of the Proctorial Board has also not carried out the detailed exercise and has not examined the matter afresh as it was mandated” and instead it “merely reviewed the documents of the proceedings”.

The report also points out the University had first set up a five­member committee set up under Prof YA Sudhakar Reddy ((15.09.2015) ) after the proctorial board’s expulsion orders of five students were protested against. This committee, however, “pleaded its inability to look into the incident afresh”. Finally a sub committee of the EC was set up on 20.11.2015 which issued final expulsion orders.

 No Pressure from HRD:

 The report quotes the embattled Vice­Chancellor Prof Appa Rao Podile, now forced to go on leave following student protests as saying he felt no pressure from the HRD ministry. “In the oral discussions with the Vice Chancellor, Registrar, Prof Parkash Babu, Dean Students’ Welfare, it has emerged that the UoH had not taken serious cognizance of the letters from MHRD and did not feel any pressure to act because of their reminder letters”, says the report.

 The University that Did Not Talk to its Students:

 The University administration failed to communicate and reach out to protesting students further escalating tensions on the campus. The report notes that “the University officers were not in constant dialogue with the protesting students which escalated the crisis”. Further, it says that “…though channels of communication through Deans, senior faculty and DSW were being used, these were inadequate and this was further completely blocked after Rohith’s suicide.

Discrimination on Campus The report bears out the “trust deficit and a feeling of academic discrimination among some of the students.”

It also notes that the grievance redressal mechanism on campus was “non­functional/defunct and is responsible for enhancing the feeling of deprivation and discrimination among the students from the socially and economically weaker sections”.

What the University Slept On:

 The report says that critical issues like the sense of discrimination were left unchecked or unresolved for the last several years despite the fault lines becoming very obvious.” It cites a letter from a MP in November 2014 that called for correction. It also notes that while University had set up thy Prof Vinod Pavarala Committee (2008), Krishna Committee and the Justice Ramaswamy Committee (2014) which have earlier examined unfortunate tragic deaths and submitted reports but their recommendations have not yet been implemented.

Rohith Vemula ­ The Scholar and the Scholarship:

 A PhD scholar with the Centre for Knowledge, Culture and Innovation Studies who had been awarded the CSIR­JRF Fellowship in 2014, Rohith Vemula was found “academically bright” by his PhD Supervisor Dr Raghav Reddy. Vemula “topped in the PhD interview”, he had faced incidentally in the same month — August 2015 — when he was first suspended by the Proctorial Board. Rohith had also got his CSIRJRF fellowship two times — an issue that the University was examining still. As a result, he had not been given JRF fellowship amount since July 2015.economically weaker sections”.

The Hindu

 A modern airport with manual scavenging



Officials say banned practice takes place in old sewers

CHENNAI: A highly modernised airport is the last place where one would expect to encounter manual scavenging. But the practice that is banned in the State reportedly takes place at the Chennai airport that has been modernised at a cost of about Rs. 2,000 crore.

Airport sources said that they had on many occasions witnessed workers cleaning the manholes on the premises of the airport without even any protective gear.

“It is a miserable scene to witness, but we are helpless. It happens once a fortnight, and sometimes once a month, depending on the requirement. How can a practice that is banned be allowed?” a source asked.

Airport director Deepak Shastri said they had initiated steps to ensure this practice was stopped soon.

“We know it is not right. The problem is that a section of the sewer lines have become too old and cannot be cleaned with machines. Hence, manual scavenging happens. But it happens only in a small area,” he added.

Since the operations are going on, on that stretch, the work to change the sewer lines cannot be done instantly, he added. “This practice is not routine and happens only once in a while,” he said.

Only last month, four people, including three manual scavengers were asphyxiated while cleaning a septic tank in Okkiyum Thoraipakkam. It is to be noted that over 200 workers have reportedly died in the State over the last two decades from falling inside sewer manholes and septic tanks.

The Times Of India

 Dalit murder: Two more suspects held


Purusharth Aradhak | TNN | Feb 17, 2016, 08.46 AM IST

Greater Noida: A day after the family of Jagdish, the 55-year-old Dalit who was killed outside Kambakshpur village, reported dissatisfaction with the police probe into his murder, police on Monday said they have arrested two more suspects in the case, identified as Monu and Babli.

A senior police officer said seven people, identified as Sonu, Monu, Babli, Ramesh, Ravinder, Sunder and Babu, all from Kambakshpur, were named in the FIR.”We arrested Sonu on Thursday and Monu and Babli on Monday and produced them in the city court, which sent them to judicial custody,” he said.

Jagdish Singh and his son Dharmender (20) were attacked by a gang of unidentified people outside their village on Thursday. Jagdish was hacked to death. Dharmender survived with critical injuries. Relatives of the deceased said the incident was a result of a decades-old rivalry between Dalits and Gujjars over a piece of land. Local MLA Satbeer Gujjar of BSP has been alleged to have sheltered the village’s Gujjar community, but he has ruled out the allegations. The village remained tensed.

The Times Of India

 Dalits seek 35% representation in Congress party at various levels


Vaivasvat Venkat | TNN | Feb 17, 2016, 12.05 AM IST

LUDHIANA: In a two-day SC conclave being organized by the Punjab Congress at Ludhiana, community members have demanded 35% representation in the party at various levels, apart from their demands for better education, health facilities, and employment for youth.

The conclave was attended by senior party leaders, including Punjab Congress president Captain Amarinder Singh, chairperson of the Election Campaign Committee, Ambika Soni; general secretary in-charge of Punjab, Shakeel Ahmad; CLP leader Charanjit Singh Channi; senior leaders Sunil Jakhar, Partap Singh Bajwa, and Manpreet Singh Badal, members of parliament Ravneet Bittu, and Bharat Bhushan Ashu, and other various community leaders, who raised the pitch, demanding more representation for Dalit members in the party for the Vidhan Sabha elections in 2017.

These leaders made it clear at the conclave that Congress had been giving them representation only in the distribution of tickets for assembly elections, but now they wanted to more representation within the party structure as well. These included the posts at district and state levels, as they felt they were being restricted to the party’s SC/ST cell. The leaders also raised the issue of increasing atrocities on Dalits in the state, and the government’s failure in providing justice to them. “Congress has done a lot for the Dalit community in the past, but at present, there is a trust deficit, and things cannot be taken for granted. The community’s youth have to be reassured that they would be given better opportunities and participation in the party at various levels,” said Sunil Jakhar.

Channi informed that the conclave’s aim was to understand issues related to the Dalit community. He said the Dalits became targets for all kinds of atrocities. “Dalits need better education facilities, and there should be one medium of education for all. In private schools, affiliation is with the CBSE and the medium is English, while in government schools, the medium is Punjabi and the education is sub-standard. This is what needs to be improved,” he added.

News monitored by AMRESH & AJEET


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