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Sunday, 30 September 2012

Dalit kids served injustice at MP school



Dalits Media Watch
News Updates 30.09.12
                 
Caste Hindu gang murders Dalit youth - IBN Live
Dalit kids served injustice at MP school - The Hindustan Times
Lucknow Municipal Corporation locates nearly 24 dry toilets in zone-6 - The Times Of India
Gangrapes: Hooda govt under SC panel's scanner - The Tribune
 
IBN Live
 
Caste Hindu gang murders Dalit youth
 
 
An 18-year-old old Dalit youth from Theerthakadu near Vandiyur was allegedly murdered by a gang of Caste Hindus here on Tuesday.
 
One person was arrested, while four others surrendered in connection with the incident, said to have been the fallout of land dispute between the two communities.
 
Around 6.30 pm, Karikalan (18) was passing through Saurashtrapuram near Vandiyur when he was waylaid by a nine-member gang.
 
 The gang allegedly attacked Karikalan with lethal weapons.
 
He was taken to Government Rajaji Hospital with grievous injuries around 7.30 pm. However, he succumbed around 9.15 pm.
 
A case was registered with the Karuppayurani police station.
 
Karikalan's father Malaisamy, a lorry driver who worked in Chennai, accompanied by his relatives and neighbours, reached the hospital  early on Wednesday.
 
Since there was no progress in the case till noon, the group, along with functionaries of the Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi, gathered at the GRH and blocked the Panagal road, demanding that Collector Anshul Mishra and Superintendent of Police V Balakrishnan intervene in the matter to ensure a fair investigation.
 
When Anna Nagar Assistant Commissioner of Police Velladorai reached the spot and urged the protestors not to block traffic on the road, they walked towards the Collectorate, raising slogans urging police to arrest the culprits.
 
Some VCK functionaries then met the Collector and pressed their demand. Following an assurance from the Collector, they dispersed.
 
Later in the day, police arrested Karthick alias Pattakathi in connection with the murder.
 
Four others, identified as Poopandi, Selvakumar, Arunpandi and Sachi Bala, also surrendered before the Judicial Magistrate court here.
 
A land dispute between youth belonging to the two communities during a temple festival in Yagappa Nagar two months ago could have led to the incident, according to Muthamizh Pandian, the rural district treasurer and coordinator of the Vandiyur Theerthakadu Land Retrieval Struggle Committee.
 
A group, including Udayakumar, Veerapandi and Poopandi, subsequently attacked Karikalan and his relative Iyyanar, injuring them, Pandian said, while adding that Udayakumar was later arrested in this connection.
 
Now Karikalan was murdered as a sequel to the dispute, he said.
 
The dispute between the two communities, he detailed, arose 30 years ago and led to friction.
The conflict pertained to a nine acre, 13 cents patta land allotted  to the Schedule Caste community in 1979, Pandian said.
 
He claimed that the Caste Hindus gradually encroached the particular property.
 
"Although a separate piece of land was allotted for Caste Hindus in Sakkimangalam, they are reluctant to shift there and continue occupying the land allotted to the SC community," he said.
 
 A civil case was pending before the Supreme Court with regard to the dispute over the property, currently occupied by around 150 SC families and 250 Caste Hindu families.
 
The Hindustan Times
 
Dalit kids served injustice at MP school
 
Bhopal/Harda, September 29, 2012
 
Hunger and humiliation — that's all 6-year-old Neha has learnt at her village school. "We are made to sit apart. The food served is just a quarter of what is given to other children. The persons who serve it almost throw it at us to avoid contact," she said. Therein lies the rub.
 
Neha is one of the 20-odd Dalit children attending the government school of Dagawashankar village in Harda district (120 km from Bhopal). And the school keeps them at arm's length, literally.
 
The seating is separate, during classes and at mealtimes. The food served is leftovers, the portions tiny. A request for a second helping makes the attendants see red, say Neha's schoolmates, Pramila and Bharti, who live in the nearby Gahal Harijan Basti. After meals, they even have to wash their dishes.
 
The children have complained at home.
 
But the parents, struggling under the injustice and stigma of caste, have not had the courage to demand justice.
 
"Registering charges against the upper caste people in the village is next to impossible," said Kusumbai, whose 8-year-old son Akash attends the school. "The government says it is doing a lot for dalits and tribals. Then why do our children get only a quarter of the food?"
 
The school authorities deny the allegations.
 
"No discrimination happens at our school," headmistress Usha Mehra told HT on phone. 
In absence of a formal complaint, the authorities are yet to take any steps.
 
SC/ST welfare minister Vijay Shah could not be reached for comment. Principal secretary of the department, M Mohan Rao, said he would initiate action once he gets the details of the issue or a formal complaint.
 
The sub-divisional magistrate of Harda, Manjusha Rai, said such discrimination could not be tolerated and an inquiry would be conducted into the matter. Bhavna Dubey, district education officer of Harda, also assured that steps would be taken to stop the discrimination.
 
But would it heal the scars of the Dalit children of Dagawashankar? One can only hope.
 
The Times Of India
 
Lucknow Municipal Corporation locates nearly 24 dry toilets in zone-6
 
TNN | Sep 30, 2012, 02.10AM IST
 
LUCKNOW: Close to the submission of On the heels of submitting its report following Supreme Court's directive in the manual scavenging case, the Lucknow Municipal Corporation has found close to 25 dry toilets in zone-6, believed to be the worst affected area by this social curse in the city. Older parts of Lucknow remain plagued by the inhuman tradition of manual scavenging in the absence of a proper sanitation mechanism. "Due to large number of slums in congested parts of old city, sewage or sanitation infrastructure cannot be provided. People have no choice but to use dry latrines," said a civic official. The practice has been ongoing in slums situated in Maulana Kalbe Abid 1 and 2 municipal wards, which are home to several congested localities such as Saadat Ganj, Kashmiri Mohala, Jawhai Tola and Mahmood Nagar, among others.
 
The findings of LMC are a part of a state-wide exercise to get the actual data on numbers of night-soil carriers in each district. Earlier this month, the apex court had fined four state governments, including Uttar Pradesh for failure to disclose the numbers of manual scavengers and their current situation.
 
Additional municipal commissioner, PK Srivastava was confident that the number of dry toilets within LMC limits will be much lesser than what had been claimed in the PIL. According to petitioners, UP has over 3 lakh dry toilets, out of which 228 are present in Lucknow district. It was also reported that 57 persons remain engaged in manual scavenging in Lucknow. "We want to appeal to such persons to come forward and take benefits of rehabilitation schemes," said Srivastava.
 
In 2011, the Union ministry of social justice & empowerment in a report submitted to National Advisory Council admitted that out of the identified 9,548 manual scavenger families in Uttar Pradesh, 67% did not receive any loan or assistance. Furthermore, Rashtriya Garima Abhiyan, a national campaign for dignity and eradication of manual scavenging, highlighted how funds meant for rehabilitation of manual scavengers under Self-Employment Scheme for Rehabilitation of Manual Scavengers, 2007 were being siphoned off in the state.
 
The law prohibiting employment of manual scavengers was framed about two decades back, but till date not a single conviction has been witnessed. In fact, Indian Railways is the biggest offender owing to large number of dry toilets and coaches with open-discharge toilets. Government of India had prohibited manual scavenging practice in 1993 through an Act.
 
The Tribune
Gangrapes: Hooda govt under SC panel's scanner
 
Pradeep Sharma, Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, September 29
 
Against the backdrop of the gangrape of a 16-year-old Dalit girl at Dabra in Hisar district allegedly by persons belonging to the upper caste, the functioning of the beleaguered Hooda government is set to come under the scanner of the National Commission for Scheduled Caste (NCSC).
 
Getting tough with state government's alleged failure to check the increasing crime against Dalits, the NCSC has decided to conduct a 'state review' of the government's role vis-à-vis the plight of the Dalits in the state.
 
"The 'state review' will cover atrocities against Dalits, including a heinous crime like rape of Dalit women, and the government's failure to implement various social justice schemes," NCSC vice-chairperson Raj Kumar Verka told The Tribune on phone today.
 
Verka, who toured Hisar and Jind districts for an on-the-spot assessment of the two cases of gangrape involving Dalit women recently, alleged that there seemed to be a "deliberate attempt" and "deep-rooted conspiracy" to terrorise the Dalit community in the state. "The commission has already written to the Haryana Chief Minister to put in place sufficient measures to ensure that such incidents are not repeated," Verka asserted.
 
Verka regretted that the Hooda government was yet to take a call on the constitution of the Haryana state scheduled caste commission as recommended by the NCSC. It could go a long way in redressing the grievances and instilling a sense of confidence among the Dalit community, he said. When asked about the NCSC's recommendation for a state-level Dalit body, Hooda, at a press conference here yesterday, had expressed ignorance over the issue.
 
Even as a series of gangrapes, including those involving Dalit women, has sparked public outrage all over the country, PL Punia, NCSC chairperson and Congress MP, had locked horns with the Congress government in Haryana. "Anti-Dalit atrocities have been taking place on a large scale in Haryana. Haryana tops the list of crimes per lakh of population," Punia is reported to have said.
 
What NCSC wants from Haryana Govt
·                     Setting up of the Haryana state scheduled caste commission
·                     Special cells in Haryana police to deal with Dalit atrocities
·                     Fast track courts to try incidents against Dalits
·                     Immediate action-taken reports in recent cases of Dalit gangrapes
 
 
--
.Arun Khote
On behalf of
Dalits Media Watch Team
(An initiative of "Peoples Media Advocacy & Resource Centre-PMARC")
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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.