Thakurs kill Dalit youth for urinating – The hindu
Two injured, houses damaged in group clash – The hindu
Dalits conduct puja in Sigaranahalli temple – The times of india
No water, no weddings in parched Bundelkhand – The Hindu
Second accused in dalit rape case arrested – The times of india
No Prosecution Under SC Act Merely for Reporting Theft – The New Indian Express
Reservation Policy for SC/ST in PU’s Executive Bodies: Chancellor seeks report, Syndicate to discuss matter first – The Indian Express
Malegaon: NIA discovers ‘secret letter’ by Purohit warning of radical right wing groups – Catch news
Global gaze on caste – The frontline
Punjab Congress to launch Dalit outreach programme – The Indian express
Dalit Sena supports railway zone demand – The hindu
Thakurs kill Dalit youth for urinating
The police have arrested five persons and registered a case; PAC deployed in the village
Weeks after the country celebrated the birth anniversary of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar on April 14, a Dalit youth was allegedly killed by Thakurs in a Saharanpur village on Saturday for urinating in a plot belonging to them, a charge the dominant community denied.
According to the FIR registered by the victim’s father, Ramsharan, Narendra had gone to answer the call of nature on Saturday night when he was mobbed by the Thakurs in Saharanpur’s Fatehpur village.
Narendra was abused and beaten up, said Yogendra Pal, the circle officer of Gangoh area under which the village falls.
The police said when Ramsharan reached the spot and intervened, he was also allegedly beaten.
“The Thakurs alleged that Narendra stole their motor pump. It was then that Jonny, one of the six culprits, shot Narendra and he died on the spot,” added Mr. Pal. Several family members of the victim were also injured in the incident.
The police have arrested five persons and registered a case under sections 302, 323, 504 and 3 (2) of the SC/ST Act.
Later, angry Dalits from the village blocked the Saharanpur-Delhi highway, demanding the immediate arrest of the culprits. Provincial Arms Constabulary personnel were deployed in the village.
Dalit activist like Satish Prakash said the killing of Narendra was not an isolated incident as there had been a series of attacks on Dalits in different parts of Uttar Pradesh.
“I believe that the clash between upper caste and Dalits have gone up because of Dalit assertion in the State over a period of time. In three separate incidents in Saharanpur, Mathura and Meerut alone, there were attacks on the marriage processions of Dalits by members of the Thakur community because they wanted the Dalits not to take the procession through their colonies,” said Dr. Prakash.
Two injured, houses damaged in group clash
Tension gripped Varagur village in Erumapatty block following a clash between two Dalit communities during a temple festival in the wee hours of Saturday. Two persons were injured in the clash.
The festival was being held in the village for the past one week.
As part of celebrations, Ponnar Sankar drama was staged on Saturday. Quarrel broke between a youth belonging to Devendrar community and another youth from Arunthathiar community.
With the interference of members from both the communities, altercation broke out that later led to clash between them.
In the impact, Susheela (47) and Rajesh (31), both of Arunthathiar community, sustained injuries and were admitted to the Government District Headquarters Hospital in Namakkal. Relatives of one of the injured (Susheela) on Sunday morning damaged two houses and set fire on two motorcycles. Police personnel rushed to the spot and brought the situation under control.
Based on a complaint from Susheela, Erumapatty police registered a case under Sections 447, 147, 148, 294b, 323, 324, 436 and 307 of IPC r/w Section 3(1) of Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act, 1984 and arrested Surendher, Dharma and Deva of Devendrar community.
Likewise, based on a complaint from R. Kulandai alias Rajesh of Devendrar community, Erumapatty police registered a case under Sections 294b, 323, 324 and 506 (ii) and arrested Sathiyapriyan, Annadurai and Paneerselvam of Arunthathiar community. Search is on for other accused. Police personnel continue to remain in the village to prevent untoward incidents.
The times of india
Dalits conduct puja in Sigaranahalli temple
Hassan: A day after the district administration opened the doors of the Sri Basaveshwara Temple in Sigaranahalli, Holenarasipura taluk to all people, dalits conducted a puja there on Sunday morning.
Dalits who came to the temple in large numbers in the morning, entered the sanctum sanctorum and conducted a puja. As the district administration is yet to appoint a priest for the temple, dalits Thayamma, Vijayakumar, Govindaraju and others performed the puja. No member from the upper caste participated in it.
Superintendent of police Rahul Kumar Shahapurwad on Saturday opened the doors of the temple for all people. He had given the responsibility of holding the daily puja to village accountant Shivakumar
The temple doors had been closed on September 2015 after a dalit woman, Thayamma, along with other dalit women had entered the temple on August 31 to perform a special puja. The majority Vokkaliga community opposed dalits from entering the temple and this led to violence.
Recently, there was a clash between dalits and the Vokkaliga community in Sigaranahalli when upper caste people stopped dalits from celebrating Ambedkar Jayanti in the community hall. Upper caste people named the hall ‘Vokkaliga Samudaya Bhavan’ and dalits protested against it. On Tuesday, in the presence of senior police offices, the name board was painted and after locking the hall, the keys were handed over to the gram panchayat.
Both incidents led to tension in the village and police deployed a large contingent to prevent any untoward incident or clash between communities.
Hassan SP Rahul Kumar Shahapurwad told TOI that the temple is open to everyone and the village is peaceful. Police personnel have been deployed. “I’m visiting the village regularly and speaking to villagers to emsure it’s peaceful,” he said.
No water, no weddings in parched Bundelkhand
Proximity to the nearest well has become crucial in the selection of grooms
A tumbler tucked under her armpit, Bhuri trudged along the dusty broken path to the “Pahadi wali Ma ka Mandir .” The exhaustion on the 48-year-old Kumhar woman’s face was apparent as she approached the hill in the blazing sun.
But the hill hosts more than a goddess — the well at its foot is the only natural supply of potable water for the village of Kapsa. The catch — it is two km from the village, a long distance to walk for a glass of drinking water, especially in scorching temperatures. For Bhuri, that can mean a journey to the hill multiple times a day.
“My parents decided my marriage. Had I known I would be fated to this, I would have never got married in this village,” Bhuri said. “Which woman would like to spend the rest of her life fetching water like this?” she asked.
Bhuri’s regret is borne out of experience but there is also an element of anxiety as her three sons have found it difficult to find brides.
While caste, class and religion are routine factors in any arranged marriage, proximity to the nearest well in the groom’s village has become a crucial element in deciding nuptials in drought-hit Bundelkhand.
In Kapsa, successive droughts and a perpetual water scarcity have made it difficult for men to find brides. As is traditional, the girls of the village have moved out after marriage but families from other villages are not willing to send their daughters to this village in Maudaha tehsil of Hamirpur, fearing they would be stuck fetching water from far away for the rest of their lives.
As 50 districts of Uttar Pradesh reel under severe drought, the situation in Kapsa is critical. The village has no tube well or canal close by. Its five ponds have all dried up, and of the 20 hand pumps, only seven are functional but high salinity makes this water non-potable. The only relief has come from two water tankers that supply a limited quantity of water at intervals.
“Fathers of the girls usually ask me, ‘When you or your sons are not in the village, how will my daughter cope? Will she do this for the rest of her life?’ I have no answer to give,” said Ranvijay Singh, who is finding it difficult to get his two younger sons married. “On many occasions, people have visited to see my boys. My boys are decent-looking and tall, and the girls’ families liked them. But once they sense the water situation, they do not return or call back,” said Mr. Singh.
After much difficulty, he got his eldest son Bharat married in 2012. Now, Mr. Singh faces the “gargantuan task” of getting his two younger sons married. All three sons work as security guards in Gujarat.
With 1530 inhabitants, Kapsa’s population mainly comprises upper caste Thakurs, Yadavs, Dalits and Pals.
A paltry 51 per cent are literate and most residents are depended on agriculture as farmers or farm labourers. If its water scarcity has deterred women from marrying into the village, over the years, scores of young men, like Mr. Singh’s sons, have been forced to migrate to work in brick kilns and construction sites as manual labour. Inter-region migration is also reported.
The recent drought has triggered a fresh bout of migration from the village.
As one walks around the Dalit corners of the village, one can see houses that are locked or with no male members — in some cases, entire families have fled the crisis. One of the houses belongs to a Jatav, Brij Lal, who migrated to New Delhi a month ago to escape the blight. His neighbour Manni, whose husband already works in Noida, plans to follow in the next few days. Her son, an electrician, faces a similar quandary as the rest of bachelors in the village. “Will we save our lives or arrange marriages?” Manni asked.
The present severe drought has meant that marriages have been cancelled, scaled down or postponed across Bundelkhand. For Kapsa however, the problem is a perpetual one, earning it an infamy it is finding hard to shed. Pradhan Chandrabhan Singh is concerned. “Yes, people think twice before giving their daughters in marriage. The truth is that even the most prosperous among us have gone to the well at least once,” he said.
To mitigate the water scarcity, the Samajwadi Party government has allocated funds for tankers and installation of new hand pumps. But pradhan Chandrabhan Singh feels that would not be enough to solve Kapsa’s long-term crisis.
“It is for the first time in two decades that tankers have entered the village. But what about the permanent solution? I have written to the administration to dig bores at four sites, for which I am willing to provide land. But they have not even responded,” Mr. Singh complained.
When Kapsa’s case was brought to the attention of Chitrakoot Divisional Commissioner Venkateshwarlu, he said he would inspect the condition in the village.
The times of india
Second accused in dalit rape case arrested
Muktsar: A day after the main accused, allegedly caught on CCTV camera in the act, surrendered in the month-old Malout abduction and rape case, Muktsar police managed to arrest the second accused. Sandeep Singh of village Tapa Khera was nabbed on Sunday from the Malout bus stand. As the rape survivor was a dalit, the National Commission for Scheduled Castes had also sought action taken report from senior cops.
On Sunday, police said that Sandeep was accused of driving the main accused, Jagdeep Singh Jojo, and the 23-year-old woman to nearby village Tappa Khera in a car. On Saturday afternoon, Jojo had surrendered before the Malout court after evading arrest for nearly a month. Resident of village Kandukhera in Muktsar, Jojo (25) was caught on camera dragging the dalit woman on March 25 from outside a computer centre at Malout where she worked. The case had hogged limelight when the aggrieved family on Thursday met NCSC vice-chairman Raj Kumar Verka. The video clip from CCTV footage had also gone viral on Saturday.
Police said that Sandeep took Jojo and the woman to a farmhouse. Jojo allegedly had dropped the girl in Malout after raping her. The case was registered after five days of the rape in Malout police station on March 30 under abduction, rape and under the SC/ST (prevention of atrocities) Act. The commission had directed Bathinda IG and Muktsar SSP to appear before it on May 3 in New Delhi.
Malout DSP Manwinderbir Singh said, “Police on Sunday succeeded in arresting Sandeep and he will be produced in court on Monday.”
The New Indian Express
No Prosecution Under SC Act Merely for Reporting Theft
By R Rajashekar Rao, Published: 25th April 2016 06:00 AM, Last Updated: 25th April 2016 06:00 AM
HYDERABAD: The Hyderabad High Court has rejected the plea of a woman for prosecution of a horticulturist for offences allegedly made under various sections of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 and the Indian Penal Code, on the ground that the basic ingredients of the offence alleged under the Act are absent from the FIR.
“Investigation pursuant to a report lodged by the horticulturist, if allowed to be continued against such a person, would result in miscarriage of justice,” the court has observed.
Justice R Kantha Rao made this observation on a criminal petition filed by the horticulturist seeking quashing of the entire proceedings, including investigation and arrest, in a case registered against him at the Kaloor police station in Khammam.
As for brief facts of the case, the horticulturist lodged a report with the police against the son of the woman (de facto complainant) alleging that the boy had committed theft of mangoes from his mango garden. Basing on his complaint, the police took the boy to the police station and manhandled him.
According to the boy’s mother, the police humiliated and manhandled her son, due to which he consumed some pesticide in an attempt to commit suicide. Alleging as such, she lodged a complaint with the police.
Basing on her complaint, police registered a case against the horticulturist under Section 3 (i) (ix) and 3 (i) (x) of the SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and Sections 342 and 323 of Indian Penal Code.
Aggrieved, the horticulturist moved the High Court seeking quashing of the FIR.
In the FIR, it was stated that the horticulturist had merely lodged a report with the police alleging commission of theft of mangoes by the son of the woman.
The facts do not disclose either the report was lodged by the horticulturist on the ground that the boy belongs to Scheduled Castes or the police took him to the police station and manhandled him on the ground that he belongs to SC. In any event, the boy said that the police manhandled and humiliated him pursuant to the report lodged by the horticulturist.
After hearing the case and perusing the material on record, including the judgments of the Supreme Court in the cases of G Pentaiah vs State of Andhra Pradesh and State of Haryana vs Bhajanlal, justice Kantha Rao has said that it is not possible to infer that the horticulturist gave report against the boy on the ground that he belongs to SC. He gave the report against the boy after coming to know of the commission of theft of mangoes. For mere submission of a report against the boy, prosecuting the man for offences under the SC/ST Atrocities Act and IPC is abuse of the process of law since the basic ingredients of the offence alleged under the Atrocities Act are not attracted. If the investigation pursuant to the report lodged by the boy’s mother is allowed to be continued against the horticulturist, it would result in miscarriage of justice, the judge observed.
While allowing the criminal petition, justice Kantha Rao ordered quashing of the entire proceedings pending against the horticulturist at the Kaloor police station.
A man lodged a report with Kaloor police in Khammam that a boy had stolen mangoes from his orchard. Police took the boy to police station and allegedly manhandled him, following which the boy attempted suicide. The boy’s mother then lodged a police complaint, basing on which police booked the horticulturist under SC/ST Atrocities Act.
For mere submission of a report of theft against the boy, prosecuting the man for offences under SC/ST Atrocities Act and IPC is abuse of the process of law, Justice R Kantha Rao, Hyderabad High Court, said.
The Indian Express
Reservation Policy for SC/ST in PU’s Executive Bodies: Chancellor seeks report, Syndicate to discuss matter first
In the next meeting of the PU Syndicate on May 1, the issue will now be addressed, before a reply is sent to the Chancellor’s office.
AFTER STUDENTS of Panjab University wrote to the Ministry of Human Resource and Development (MHRD) for implementation of a reservation policy for SC/ST candidates in the university’s executive bodies, PU Chancellor and Vice-President of India Hamid Ansari has sought a report on the implementation of the university’s reservation policy. As per the letter, the university is required to submit a detailed report on the percentage of reservation currently being given to SC/ST candidates during employment, admission and in the university’s governing bodies.
In the next meeting of the PU Syndicate on May 1, the issue will now be addressed, before a reply is sent to the Chancellor’s office.
A special committee has now been constituted by the varsity to look into the implementation of the 2006 UGC Guidelines for provision of reservation to SC/ST students and teachers in the Panjab University Senate and Syndicate. The UGC policy mandates reservation for SC/ST candidates during admission and recruitment for the university teaching staff. Additionally, reservation must also be provided in all governing and executive bodies of universities. For admission and employment, 15 per cent reservation is applicable for Scheduled Castes and 7.5 per cent reservation for Scheduled Tribes.
As per a legal notice sent to PU by the Punjab and Haryana High Court in 2009, the university was directed to create 25 per cent reservation for SC/ST candidates in all its governing bodies. After the varsity received the complaint then, a committee was formed under the then university Vice-Chancellor R C Sobti, but no action was initiated.
“We do have a reservation policy in place during admission and employment. However, SC/ST candidates do not have reservation in the Senate or Syndicate as of now. Currently, we have a system where nominations are made in the governing bodies for candidates coming from these backgrounds, i.e. there is a representation from SC/ST candidates in the Senate and Syndicate. Now that the issue has been highlighted, the university needs some clarity on the terms ‘representation’ and ‘reservation’, which is why the issue is being tabled in front of the university Syndicate in its next meeting,” a member of the special committee told Chandigarh Newsline.
The issue regarding reservation in the university’s governing bodies came to light in March again, when a few students of PU wrote to the MHRD and Department of Social Justice and Empowerment, seeking implementation of a reservation policy, ahead of the Senate polls which are scheduled to be held in August this year. The students had highlighted that the PU authorities had released the official schedule of the Senate Polls 2016 without adopting the UGC guidelines for reservation of SC/ST candidates in the university’s governing bodies.
Malegaon: NIA discovers ‘secret letter’ by Purohit warning of radical right wing groups
The NIA has acquired a ‘secret letter’ apparently written on 15 October 2008 by Lt Colonel Srikant Purohit, an accused in the 2008 Malegaon blast case, in which Purohit warned the Military Intelligence wing of the Army of the emergence of right wing radical groups. He said this could lead to “communal clashes”.
The letter was sent after the second Malegaon blasts, and refers to “an A-2 source” who “provided some valuable information with regard to the right-wing activities in Maharashtra and Gujarat.”
Purohit had been arrested by the Maharashtra ATS on 5 November 2008, says The Economic Times.
2 killed, several injured as students clash at Aligarh Muslim University
Violence broke out between two groups of students at Aligarh Muslim University on the night of Saturday and Sunday, killing two people and injuring several others, while the proctor’s office and several vehicles on campus were set ablaze and furniture was destroyed. Students reportedly shot at each other.
The violence finally died down after the police arrested a few of the students and the Rapid Action Force was deployed, according to the Hindustan Times.
One of the students who was killed had been expelled earlier and died on the spot, while the other succumbed to his injuries in hospital on Sunday.
Uddhav Thackeray says Modi govt was wrong to label Kanhaiya anti-national
The Narendra Modi government was wrong to label JNU Students Union president Kanhaiya Kumar as anti-national and to file a sedition case against him, said BJP ally Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray during a party meeting on Sunday.
“It is wrong to brand Kanhaiya as anti-national and slap a sedition case against him. He is not anti-national,” said Thackeray.
At the meeting, Thackeray spoke about three young men who have dominated headlines since January, Kanhaiya Kumar, Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula who committed suicide at Hyderabad University, and Hardik Patel, leader of the Patedar movement in Gujarat, according to The Indian Express.
Uttarkhand, Article 356, to dominate Lok Sabha session from today
The second part of the Lok Sabha’s Budget session that begins today is likely to be stormy right from the start with the government and Opposition pitched for a confrontation over the use of Article 356 on the Congress governments in Uttarakhand and Arunachal Pradesh.
The Opposition parties have already given notices for discussion in both houses of Parliament, but the government may not allow it since the matter of Uttarakhand is still in court, says The Indian Express.
“The issue of President’s Rule in Uttarakhand is sub judice. I don’t think it can be discussed until 27 April,” said Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan.
Digvijaya alleges fraud in corporate loan restructures
Congress general secretary Digvijaya Singh has alleged that the government helped a few corporates to restructure their loans from public sector banks.
“I strongly demand the government bring into the public domain loans above Rs 100 crore that were restructured,” said Singh. “They declare the names of defaulters but fight shy of revealing the names of corporate (entities) and industries who got the advantages of restructuring of loans.”
According to The Telegraph, Digvijaya has written to finance minister Arun Jaitley with ‘proof’ of one instance of a company defrauding a bank over a loan worth Rs 1,045 crore.
Global gaze on caste
The Indian government resists any international scrutiny of the caste system, including a recent U.N. report that condemns caste hierarchy. But no amount of sophistry can wish away the possibility of anarchic violence if the government continues to downplay the problem. By VIJAY PRASHAD
Out of the maze of the United Nations Human Rights Council came a short report—just over 10,000 words—with an innocuous title, “Report of the Special Rapporteur on Minority Issues” (January 28, 2016). This report takes aim at caste discrimination as a global affliction, not one that impacts South Asia only. It is a powerful report, which suggests that the caste system contradicts “the principles of human dignity, equality and non-discrimination”. It is not caste violence or caste discrimination that is objectionable, notes the report, but caste hierarchy itself.
India’s permanent representative to the U.N. in Geneva, Ajit Kumar, hastily dismissed the report. Speaking for the Government of India, Kumar noted that the Special Rapporteur for Minority Issues, Rita Izsak-Ndiaye, had breached her mandate. He insisted on a narrow reading of her charge, namely to report on the human rights of “national, or ethnic, religious minorities”. Caste, he said pointedly, did not belong to this list. The report noted that caste has “minority-like characteristics”, which Kumar suggested could apply to any social group. A narrower understanding of minority rights is necessary, Kumar suggests. The Indian government has resisted any international scrutiny of the caste system and its attendant consequences such as poverty and humiliation. During the 2001 World Conference Against Racism, India strenuously rebuked the U.N. for taking up issues of caste hierarchy and the status of Dalits in Indian society. Omar Abdullah, at the time Minister of State for External Affairs in the government led by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), told the assembled delegates in Durban, South Africa, that reports of caste oppression were “highly exaggerated” and that those who spoke about the trials of Dalits produced “misleading propaganda” based on “anecdotal evidence”. Kumar’s statement is in line with this denial.
The Indian express
Punjab Congress to launch Dalit outreach programme
The Congress will soon launch ‘Samaj Jodo Campaign’ in the state. The aim of the programme would be to reach out to the Dalit community at the grassroot level.
“The 34 reserved constituencies would be covered first. The party will then go ahead with other constituencies also,” said Sufi singer Hans Raj Hans who had recently joined Congress. He was speaking in a meeting with the Dalit community at Kartarur reserved assembly constituency on Sunday.
“The programme will attempt to touch upon all those whose voices had been unheard since the last ten years, who have been facing humiliation at the hands of the present SAD-BJP regime in the state,” he said. “The Dalit Samaj should fight against the communal forces in the state in the coming Vidhan Sabha elections.”
“Congress has always given due representation to the Dalits. It made them more powerful and gave them equal opportunity. Congress is the only secular party where the Dalit Samaj feel safe and see their bright future also,” said Hans.
This came about despite Hans recently having vented out against the Congress for giving representation only to the Ravidassia community. He had protested that his community, Valmikis, were under-represented in the party.
Dalit Sena supports railway zone demand
The Andhra Pradesh Dalit Sena has raised the long-pending demand of creation of a separate railway zone with headquarters at Visakhapatnam at a national meeting of Dalit Sena in New Delhi.
Andhra Pradesh Dalit Sena president Palteti Penta Rao sought the help of Dalit Sena national president Ramachandra Paswan and president of Lok Janashakti Party to pressurise the Centre for a decision on the issue. Dalit Sena national president responded positively to the request, Mr Penta Rao said.
News monitored by AMRESH & AJEET