Dalits Media Watch
News Updates 09.05.12
Haryana govt institute segregates SC/ST - India Today
Disadvantaged, poor get 25% quota under RTE Act - The Times Of India
They seek water, BBMP plans heater - IBN Live
Govt unsure of farm work in NREGA - The Hindustan Times
'Rights of SC/STs not being protected in Gujarat' - Zee News
Haryana govt institute segregates SC/ST
Even as the central and state governments have been talking about the right to education, an institute run by the Haryana government in Narnaul district has created a separate wing for the students of scheduled castes (SC) and scheduled tribes (ST) holding there special classes for them.
Headlines Today visited the recently inaugurated ST/SC wing of Narnaul Institute of Technical Training. The way it has been created clearly showed that the institute, meant to impart knowledge, has been giving the students lessons on discrimination.
Not too far away from the national capital, the college seemed to be treating the ST/SC students as untouchables as they were given special classes separately from general category students.
A student Pradeep Kumar said, "This is a move to segregate students. Everyone has the equal right to education. This is a move to spread casteism in the field of education."
"All students should study in the same building... This move to segregate students is wrong," said another student Sanjay Kumar.
However, the college administration gave a bizarre defence for the discrimination as principal Harminder Singh called it a "special privilege" for the SC/ST students.
"We have created an SC wing in the Narnaul ITI as per government instructions. This is for SC/ST students who are admitted in the first three levels to the institute," the principal said.
Shockingly, the separate wing was inaugurated by Haryana Chief Minister Bhoopinder Singh Hooda himself. When an RTI activist sought information on whether an institute existed with separate buildings for SC/ST students, the reply was a clear "no".
RTI activist Manoj Vishwakarma said, "This move is aimed at branding SC/ST and Dalit students, which is a crime."
INLD leader Om Prakash Chautala attacked the Congress government over the issue. He said, "The present government is dividing people on the basis of caste and religion."
After facing flak for the insensitive move, the state government rushed to save face.
Haryana Education Minister Geeta Bhukkal said, "We have passed instructions that this practice should be discontinued and the board should be removed."
SC panel promises action
Taking cognisance of the matter after Headlines Today brought the discrimination by the institute to his notice the chairman of National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC), P.L. Punia promised action against the institute and the state government.
"This is a serious matter. We will serve notice to the Haryana government and seek answer from them. This is not acceptable. We will take serious action," Punia said.
Haryana has recently seen a spurt in caste tensions. Thoughtless moves like creating a separate wing for SC/ST students in a government-funded institution can only further increase the resentment among people.
The Times Of India
Disadvantaged, poor get 25% quota under RTE Act
Sruthy Susan Ullas, TNN | May 9, 2012, 06.25AM IST
BANGALORE: With weeks left for the schools to reopen, the Karnataka government on Tuesday brought clarity to the 25% quota for the underprivileged in the Right to Education Act (RTE), issuing a notification on how the pie is divided among the weaker sections who could get admission in unaided schools.
The 25% RTE quota is split between disadvantaged groups and the economically weaker section (EWS). The former consists of 11 groups - SC, ST, Category 1, 2 (a), 2 (b), 3 (a), 3 (b), orphans , street children, children with special needs and HIV-infected . Those seeking seats under Category 2 (a), 2 (b), 3 (a) and 3 (b) should have an annual family income of less than Rs 3.5 lakh.
Children from families whose annual income is below Rs 3.5 lakh - the threshold for the creamy layer of backward class as notified by the social welfare department - will be considered under EWS. Those seeking seats under EWS should not come under any of the other 11 disadvantaged groups.
SCs get lion's share in 25% RTE quota
BANGALORE: The Karnataka government on Tuesday announced the split-up of the 25% quota under RighttoEducation Act (RTE).
Of the 25% seats , SCs will get 7.5% and STs 1.5%. The remaining 16 % will be shared by the other nine disadvantaged groups and the EWS . The schools can decide on them through lots. For example , if there are 11 students belonging to this 16 % for 10 vacancies , the lot system could be utilized.
The first seven categories will be determined by the notification of the social welfare department . The rest of them will be based on the notification of the department concerned like labour department .
The governmentwill reimburse Rs 11,848 for a student joining Class 1. The amount will be half as much for a preschool kid. If the quota for SCs is not filled, it can be made available for STs and vice-versa within the neighbourhood . If the 16 % is not filled, it's available for the SC /ST and vice-versa . If the quota is not filled from within the neighbourhood , it should be extended .
It has not yet decided on what to do with the seats if they still remain vacant . The procedures on how to go about the implementation will be notified on Wednesday .
They seek water, BBMP plans heater
BANGALORE: While many from the economically weaker section residing in slums are deprived of water, the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has plans to distribute solar water heaters to them.
The BBMP has reserved 22.75 per cent funds in its annual budget for welfare schemes for the SC/ST and other backward classes. The BBMP is now providing solar water heaters to the people residing in houses constructed under the 22.75 scheme. The proposal has been approved by the previous Standing Committee for Social Justice.
Former chairperson of the Committee K Mahesh Babu, confirmed that they have approved the proposal. He said under the 22.75 scheme, `3 lakh will be given to members of Schedule Caste/Schedule Tribe to construct houses. And for the same residents, solar water heaters will be provided. "A 100-litre water capacity water heater will be provided to every household," he said. According to a senior BBMP official, houses that were constructed under this scheme are 13 X 10 or 10 X 12 dimension. "We are providing the smallest solar heater which is ideal for a family of four. There are more than 7,500 houses constructed under the scheme and all of them will get the heaters in different phases," an official said.
Munishamappa, residing in a house constructed under the 22.75 scheme said, "It is the duty of civic agencies like BBMP and BWSSB to provide portable water. We fetch water from a borewell which is very far from our homes. What do we do with solar water heaters, when there is no water to take bath at all. BBMP should have provided drinking water instead of wasting money on such equipment."
The Hindustan Times
Govt unsure of farm work in NREGA
Prasad Nichenametla, Hindustan Times, New Delhi, May 09, 2012
Last Updated: 00:09 IST(9/5/2012)
The Centre has suspended a decision to allow rice cultivation under NREGA, fearing that it would lead to demands for including other crops under the act. In a bid to rebuild the appeal of the UPA's flagship programme, minister for rural development Jairam Ramesh had announced a new version of the right-to-work scheme in February.
One of the modifications was to allow small, marginal and SC/ST farmers to employ NREGA workers on their farms for transplantation, weeding, etc. For that, farmers would have to grow the SRI (System of Rice Intensification) variety of rice, which provides high yields with low water consumption.
However, last week's government notification does not mention cultivation works, even though it lists 30 new ones allowed under the Act - such as vermi-composting, farm bunding, and construction of toilets and shelters for cattle and poultry. "Agriculture is a recurring expenditure, whereas NREGA is for capital expenditure. Besides, (if one variety is allowed) we may face demands to allow sugarcane, wheat, etc, tomorrow. It would open a Pandora's box," Ramesh said on Tuesday, while announcing the notification.
"Though not rejected, the decision is kept in abeyance for the time being," Ramesh said. Ministry officials are opposed to the inclusion of farm works, stating that it goes against the purpose of NREGA - which involves providing subsistence in its absence.
Permitting rice cultivation was proposed by a committee to revise MG-NREGA guidelines, headed by planning commission member Mihir Shah, in the wake of demands from the states and farmer groups.
Agriculture minister Sharad Pawar had written to the Prime Minister, seeking suspension of NREGA in the farming season, in addition to letting NREGA labour in agriculture.
Significantly, while addressing farmers a few days ago, Andhra Pradesh chief minister Kiran Reddy had said he would request the Centre to allow more crops and varieties under NREGA, besides SRI.
'Rights of SC/STs not being protected in Gujarat'
Last Updated: Monday, May 07, 2012, 23:55
Ahmedabad: Leader of Opposition Shaktisinh Gohil on Monday alleged the rights of Scheduled Caste and Schedule Tribe were not being protected in Gujarat.
"Despite a provision in the Act that the committee to review the implementation of law relating to protection of rights of SC/ST should meet twice a year, it met today after a gap of over two years," he claimed.
"It clearly reflected the anti SC/ST stance of government. Last year, out of 822 cases of atrocity on SCs in Gujarat, only 47 persons got punished, while 755 were acquitted," Gohil pointed out.
Gohil said in all such cases the state government should have filed appeal against the acquittal but the government filed appeal only in 15 cases. Because of no action against the offenders, law breakers get emboldened to commit crime with impunity.
Alleging that Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi was trying to suppress the voice of opposition here, Gohil said the chief minister has not included Congress MP or MLAs in this review committee despite a provision in law. PTI
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Dalits Media Watch Team
(An initiative of "Peoples Media Advocacy & Resource Centre-PMARC")
Peoples Media Advocacy & Resource Centre- PMARC has been initiated with the support from group of senior journalists, social activists, academics and intellectuals from Dalit and civil society to advocate and facilitate Dalits issues in the mainstream media. To create proper & adequate space with the Dalit perspective in the mainstream media national/ International on Dalit issues is primary objective of the PMARC.