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CASTE: The Dalit Women Who Made Their Voices Heard in 2017 …


The Dalit Women Who Made Their Voices Heard in 2017
The Ugly Reality of Caste Violence and Discrimination in Urban India
Kerala Opens Temple Doors To Dalit Priests, And Equality
Dalits Swarm Social Media With Moustache Selfies in Gujarat in Novel Protest
Dalit youth beaten up for sporting a moustache
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The Dalit Women Who Made Their Voices Heard in 2017

On the threshold of 2018, The Wire revisits some uplifting moments from 2017. Here’s 2017: The Year in Hope.
It’s been a hard few thousand years to be Dalit and clearly, 2017 was no exception. But it was also a year in which Dalit men and women spun threads of hope everyone could cling to, except Dalit women shined especially bright. They shattered public myths of what Dalit women could do, look like or mean for the country as a whole. …

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The Ugly Reality of Caste Violence and Discrimination in Urban India

Dec 12, 2017       
A mention of violence against Dalits on account of their caste readily bring forth images from rural or small-town India; depending on our vintage these could be from late 1970s’ horrific Belchi and Pipra massacres, or of the more recent public flogging of Dalits in Una, Gujarat. We would rarely imagine metropolitan cities, supposedly melting pots, as being sites of caste-based crimes, as the urban arena is expected to dissolve and obliterate caste distinctions. Caste is prima facie anonymous in urban India; urban (upper-caste) Indians would forcefully insist that caste is either dead or dying, as forces of urbanisation, globalisation and modernisation are sweeping away antiquated social distinctions, and fostering a climate of meritocracy, which recognises and rewards individual merit or ability on a level playing field. …

Kerala Opens Temple Doors To Dalit Priests, And Equality

October 10, 2017
Thiruvananthapuram:  In a landmark step, 36 non-Brahmins – six of them Dalits – have been appointed as priests in conservative Kerala. The appointments were made by the Kerala’s Travancore Devasom Recruitment Board, which is controlled by the state government – currently headed by CPM’s Prinarayi Vijayan.
Today, Yadhu Krishna, a Dalit, scripted history became the first to enter the sanctum sanctorum of the centuries-old Thiruvalla Manappuram Siva temple. …

youngman with moustache
Image used for representational purpose only [Image Courtesy: Dreamstime.com]

Dalits Swarm Social Media With Moustache Selfies in Gujarat in Novel Protest

A Dalit was lynched by the upper caste Patel community for watching people do the garba, the traditional Gujarati dance, on Saturday last week, while another was beaten up on Sunday in the Gandhinagar district by Rajputs for sporting a moustache.
October 2, 2017
Ahmedabad: Months before the Gujarat Assembly election, Dalits, a year after the Una incident, are once again up in arms against the government, alleging the atrocities against their community continue unabated. Rashtriya Dalit Adhikar Manch is already planning a number of protests in the days to come.
A Dalit was lynched by the upper caste Patel community for watching people do the garba, the traditional Gujarati dance, on Saturday last week, while another was beaten up on Sunday in the Gandhinagar district by Rajputs for sporting a moustache. …

Dalit youth beaten up for sporting a moustache

Sep 29, 2017
AHMEDABAD: Merely 15km from the state capital, Gandhinagar, a dalit youth was beaten up by some upper caste people allegedly for sporting a moustache!
Three persons from the darbar community allegedly abused and assaulted Piyush Parmar (24), the youth from Limbodara village in Kalol taluka of Gandhinagar district, on September 25 because the members from the dominant community did not like the idea of a dalit youth sporting a moustache. …

Telangana: Dalits allege social boycott in Nizamabad, not allowed to celebrate Navratri or enter temple

The conflict started when some Dalits organised a dahi-handi event in the village as part of Krishnashtami celebration which allegedly irked upper caste families.
Hyderabad, September 25, 2017
While India got its second Dalit president in Ram Nath Kovind a few months ago, for villagers in Nizamabad district of Telangana, such news has failed to put an end to the caste discrimination they face.
Nearly 110 Dalit families in Bejjora village of Bheemgal Mandal in Nizamabad are facing alleged social boycott by village development committee (VDC) members. …

Dalit lawyer threatened by upper caste inmates in jail

Jan 2, 2017
AHMEDABAD: Navchetan Parmar, an accused in the murder of a police constable, during dalit protests post the Una flogging episode in July 2016, has alleged that some upper caste prisoners had threatened him to keep mum about atrocities, when he was lodged in Amreli jail. Parmar is one of the accused in the murder of Pankaj Amreliya, who was injured when a protest by dalits, on July 19, turned violent in Amreli. …

Dichotomisation of Caste and Class

Nov 11, 2016

Representational Image (Pixabay)
Representational Image (Pixabay)

Denied water, tribal woman in UP digs her own well

Jul 13, 2016 
Lucknow: A tribal woman in Uttar Pradesh’s parched Bundelkhand has dug a well almost single-handedly for 40 families after her upper caste neighbours denied them access to a hand-pump.
“We are tribals and lived in Duddhi village. But we were not allowed to use the hand-pump by the upper caste residents. Arranging for a pot of drinking water was an everyday battle we had to face for the quest of survival,” said Kasturi. …

Crime rising against India’s lowest castes

Jul 06, 2016 
In the prosperous district of Kannur in one of India’s most prosperous states, Kerala, Eramangalathu Chitralekha, 39, was the first Dalit woman to drive an autorickshaw in 2005. Her new profession immediately angered the upper castes, who taunted her and threatened violence. One day, that year, her autorickshaw was set ablaze. In 2013, it was damaged beyond repair. The district collector gifted her a new autorickshaw in June 2014, but on March 4, 2016, it was destroyed again. …

Reservations don’t make access to resources easier for lower-caste students


Social stigma, lack of awareness, bureaucratic hurdles prevent students from making use of quotas
June 10, 2016
Students from backward castes and tribal communities are often disparaged for not being good enough and using the reservation system to gain admissions. A recent paper from the UN University World Institute for Development Economics Research shows students from these strata strive just as hard for seats in colleges and government jobs, but despite that face a social stigma. …

Pixabay Image
Representational Photo (Pixabay Image)

Dalits can’t draw water from well here   

Apr 14, 2016 
Becharaji (Mehsana): On a sweltering afternoon, a dozen-odd women of Bechar village in Mehsana sit a few steps away from the well with their pots. …

Tamil Nadu: Dalit man hacked to death in full public view for marrying Thevar girl in Tirupur   

Mar 14, 2016
In yet another incident of caste violence in Tamil Nadu, a newly-wed couple was beaten up by goons in full public view in Udumalpet, Tirupur, on Sunday, after which the culprits then hacked the man to death. …


The women who refuse to do India’s dirtiest job  

March 01, 2016
Ranikumari Khokar is campaigning to end a caste-based practice that condemns women to cleaning human waste by hand
Every morning I would take a broom and tin plate to the homes of the upper caste thakurs to pick up their faeces. I would collect the waste in a cane basket and later throw it in a dumping ground outside the village.” …

Cast Away the Caste System
Cast Away the Caste System

I was asked my caste at Dwarka temple: Kumari Selja

Dec 1, 2015
NEW DELHI: Congress MP Kumari Selja created a stir in Rajya Sabha on Monday by claiming that she was asked about her caste when she visited the Dwarka temple in Gujarat as a Cabinet minister. …

Rajasthan: Dalit student beaten for touching utensil in school

Oct 04, 2015
A 10-year-old Dalit student of a government school in Osian tehsil sustained minor injuries after his teacher allegedly thrashed him for touching utensil when the mid-day meal was being served inside the school premises, the police said on Saturday. …

‘Barbers refuse to cut hair of Dalits’   Thehindu.com
May 03, 2015
After the recent incident of Dalits being denied haircuts at salons at Panjiganahalli in Sira taluk, a similar case has surfaced in Kadagathur, Madhugiri taluk. …

Mention of caste-based abuse sans details can’t attract provisions of SC/ST Act: HC   Indianexpress.com
April 30, 2015
Mere mention of an allegation in the FIR that the complainant was referred to with caste-based remarks is not enough to take cognisance of the offence made under the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act (commonly known as the SC/ST Act), the Allahabad High Court has ruled. …

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