‘C’ Word – July 2021

  • This article explains how the institution of policing is arbitrary, discriminatory, and stacked against the most marginalized and how the successive Police reform commissions failed to take intersectionality approach on caste, gender, region issues. However, elaborate the reforms could be, custodial torture and deaths continue to be inflicted upon Marginalized communities, while Police gets away with impunity. The major reason behind the failure of police reforms discourse to bring about actual change is that it has failed to acknowledge that the very ideology, purpose, and practices of policing are inherently oppressive.
  • Guru Prakash articulated how Dalit politics were at different times depended upon leaders like Ambedkar, Jagjivan Ram, Ramvilas Pasvan and parties like Congress, BSP etc., who traded them as election commodities and how various events diluted the gravity of Dalit politics while turning parties into self-serving family parties. Ultimately, the community doesn’t have a single party staunchly supporting it’s causes to mainstream them. Representation in organization and in government will be the guiding force of the next generation of reforms for recognition and dignity of the Dalit Samaj.
  • Ramachandra Guha in this article brings together, the stark differences between North and South India in a multidimensional way. He explains, through statistics and other authors, how South reaped much earlier the benefits of social reform movements and absence of Hindu Muslim conflicts, less interest towards Hindu revivalism during post-independence period. This transitioned south into states with better infrastructure, ample industries, well informed human resources pool, better gender relations, easier access to public service etc. He also warns how South, which pay higher tax than what it gets back from Union, will account very little in future, given the proposal to re allocate Lok Sabha seats based on population is on board. States faring poor in human development index than South, like UP and Bihar continues to influence National Politics and Policies, increasing North-South divide and Challenging Indian Federalism.
  • A study by WaterAid India on educational status of the children of the manual scavengers, shows that nearly 1 in 3 respondents stating their children had no access to formal education. It also displays the poor state of access to education by the next generation, which is a major challenge to empower manual scavengers, written by Raman and Singh in The Indian Express.
  • Social Activist Ram Puniyani enunciates the politics behind the rising atrocities against Dalits in his article. He expresses the impact of growing frequency of crimes against Dalits and Adivasis and Brahmanical strategies on the Dalits and women. He also notifies the BJP government that diluting the basis of reservations and signifies the socio- economic scenario of Dalits and Adivasis and importance of taking historical deprivation as a benchmark of affirmative action.
  • An article published in The News Minute on June 3, 2021 where Prashant Bhaware sheds light on the Annihilation of Caste written by Dr. B. R. Ambedkar. He clearly explains the responsibility of upper caste to annihilate the caste and he also spells out the social reform and need of reconstruction of Hindu society to bring equality.
  • Prabal Saran Agarwal and Harsh Vardhan Tripathy categorically de-hyphenate Birsa Munda, the leader of Ulgulan movement during Colonial time, from being identified as Savior of Hindutva and calls it a misconceived history. The article details the causes and course of Munda Revolt (1890s) as against Imperialistic Permanent Settlement act and how Birsa Munda took over the the leadership. Also, the Birsa Munda led attack on Christian Missionaries were due to their support to British Government and oppressors and not on religious lines.  Moreover, in a period when the term ‘Hindu’ had a very limited meaning, known only to the elite upper caste reformers and had not found any wider currency, it would be preposterous to claim that the Mundas and other tribal communities who lived far away from the so-called mainstream society were fighting to defend it! Hence Birsa Munda should be remembered not only as a social reformer but also a revolutionary who challenged the triumvirate of the colonial state, missionaries and landlords, which makes him a source of inspiration for the present-day struggles of tribal communities against the new triumvirate of the neoliberal state, Hindutva and multinational corporations.
  • Research scholar, Vivek Kumar Singh, in his article confirms and criticizes the low funding and fewer number of scholarships in the National Overseas Scholarship for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes and he also emphasize the need of proposal for expansion of these scholarships scheme by the state.
  • Jayan Kothari in his article explains the intersectionality involved in sexual violence against women and that repeated judgments have set aside the punishment of convicts under Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities, PoA) act, 1995 while prescribing punishment under Sec 376 of IPC alone. It is unfortunate that intersectionality, which seeks to recognize the multiple grounds of marginalization faced by women, was used by the court to state that it becomes difficult to establish whether it was caste, gender or disability that led to the commission of the offence. Bring PoA on table matters because the repeated setting aside of convictions under the PoA Act bolsters the allegations that the law is misused and amounts to the erasure of caste-based violence faced by women. The article also recognises the opportunity missed to convict under PoA by the Supreme court to reflect the intersectionality of crimes faced by SC and ST WOMEN.
  • The Indian American Attitudes Survey (IAAS) found that over 8 in 10 Indian Americans who identify with Hindu caste group belong to general or upper caste. The survey reveals that 83% belong to general category, 16% from OBC and 1% from SC & ST. It also states that the ‘entrenched nature of caste – a marker of hierarchy and status associated with Hinduism… within the diaspora community in the United States’.
  • Vivek Gupta articulates the regretful situations of Dalit bonded labors in Punjab. He conveys the problems faced by the Dalit women labors and also highlights the social and economic reasons.

Published by Egalitarians India

Egalitarians is a leaderless, voluntary, and not-for-profit group deeply committed to the principle of equality. We are a group of volunteers working with a common understanding for a common goal of creating a casteless egalitarian society.

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