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Friday 11 January 2013

HC terms TN relief for Dalits in Dharmapuri insufficient

Dalits Media Watch
News Updates 11.01.13
HC terms TN relief for Dalits in Dharmapuri insufficient - Indian Express
Govt mulls Rs 500 cr corpus fund for dalit entrepreneurs - The Times Of India
Rape political tool in India: UN - The Hindustan Times
Evils of casteism in focus at Tagore Theatre - The Tribune
Indian Express
HC terms TN relief for Dalits in Dharmapuri insufficient
Press Trust of India : Chennai, Fri Jan 11 2013, 02:10 hrs
The Madras High Court today said the Tamil Nadu government's proposal to provide relief of Rs 7.32 crore to 326 Dalit families of four villages in Dharmapuri district affected in the November 7 violence was "not at all sufficient."
A group had on that day torched 285 huts in three Dalit colonies in Dharmapuri district after a man belonging to Vanniyar caste committed suicide, upset over his daughter marrying a Dalit boy.
A letter produced before the First Bench today showed the details of the proposal sent to state government for sanctioning the relief eligible as per the SC/ST Act for damages caused to household articles, and Rs 7,32,07,715 has been quantified in this regard.
The total amount of damages arrived at in all four Dalit colonies (Rs 3,61,01,435 at Natham, Rs 53,26,550, at Anna Nagar, Rs 2,98,67,230 at Kondampatty and Rs 18,92,500 at Chengalmedu) was Rs 7,32,07,715.
Counsel for the petitioner submitted that the government has not passed any order in this regard.
The bench, comprising acting Chief Justice Elipe Dharma Rao and Justice Aruna Jagadeesan, said, ".. in our view the amount which has been sanctioned is not at all sufficient taking into consideration, the mental agony and pain underwent by affected people of the area."
"Further the matter of providing adequate relief is under consideraton with government from January 5. Hence, in order to meet the ends of justice, we direct the government to pass appropriate order, sanctioning the amount of Rs 7.32 crore within two weeks from today."
The bench also directed the state government to appoint former Madurai District Collector U Sagayam to assist Dharmapuri District Collector in disbursing the amount to 326 families of Natham, Anna Nagar, Kondampatty and Chengalmedu in Dharmapuri district.
Advocate General submitted that the government has sanctioned Rs 1,63,00,000 for providing relief for affected people and the Chief Minister has also sanctioned Rs 50,000 to victims from Chief Minister's Relief Fund.
The Times Of India


Govt mulls Rs 500 cr corpus fund for dalit entrepreneurs

TNN | Jan 11, 2013, 05.22 AM IST
VISAKHAPATNAM: The state government is planning to set aside a Rs 500 crore corpus fund to encourage dalit entrepreneurs in the state, major industries minister J Geeta Reddy said here on Thursday.
Participating in the first anniversary of Dalit Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DICCI), she said the state has witnessed an increase in dalit entrepreneurs. In 2005, the business units run by SCs were only five and it had increased to 2,600 by 2011. Similarly, units owned by STs have gone up from just three to 612.
Observing that the state was making progress with an increasing number of entrepreneurs belonging to SC/ST category coming up, she said the government was offering various sops like up to Rs 50 lakh for start-ups without any collateral. Government had set aside 16 per cent and 6 per cent land for SCs and STs respectively in industrial parks and SC/STs can pay for the cost of land over a period of 10 years. Also, the government provides 100 per cent reimbursement on stamp duty for SC/STs, she added.
Noting that several dalit entrepreneurs were unable to open business units due to lack of capital, Peddapalli MP G Vivekanand said there was a need to increase the capital provided to dalits. He said that DIwas planning to set up a venture capital fund to promote entrepreneurship among dalits.
He urged the state government to increase the rebate on power for industries owned by SC/STs. "The government should provide a special power tariff incentive for dalits to encourage new entrepreneurs," he said. Commenting on PSUs, he said 4 per cent of purchases of raw material should be made from dalits, but it was yet to be ascertained whether it was being adhered to or not.
The Hindustan Times
Rape political tool in India: UN
Zia Haq, Hindustan Times, New Delhi, January 10, 2013
Dalit women constitute the worst victims of sexual violence in India, along with rapes committed by security forces, a UN-authorised status report has said.  A large proportion of such crimes against Dalit women take place in Uttar Pradesh, a state which until recently had a Dalit woman as chief minister, according to figures cited in the "Status Report 2012" by the UN's working group on human rights in India.
 The review noted that two women are raped every hour, and every six hours, a married woman is found beaten to death, burnt or driven to suicide.
 Although the brutal rape of a woman in Delhi sparked a national rage, rural women -- often poor, illiterate and from disadvantaged sections – bear the worst brunt. Only a fraction these cases are reported, the UN group said.
 Abduction of Scheduled Caste women are rampant in Uttar Pradesh, which accounted for 58.8% of the cases in 2011, the year assessed.
 Rape is often used as a tool for political and social subjugation of Dalit women, doomed to the lowest rungs of society due to caste-based prejudices. "Sexual violence against Dalit women is a systemic way of enforcing status quo of the Dalits…," the review said.
 Rapes by security forces is another key offender, it noted. Despite circumstantial evidence, often "probes are thwarted to facilitate their exoneration".
The Tribune
Evils of casteism in focus at Tagore Theatre
Chandigarh, January 10
On the fourth day of the Eighth TFT Winter Theatre Festival, the much acclaimed production "Court Martial" was staged at Tagore Theatre today. The play, directed by city-based theatre director Sudesh Sharma, was staged for the 400th time.
The play was based on the caste system, which is still prevalent in our society and has not spared prestigious institutions such as the Army too. The play depicted the trial of Sawar Ram Chandra, who after being insulted by an upper caste officer, murders one of his officers and injures another.
Everyone starts sympathizing with the accused after his trial begins. War veteran Col Surat Singh, who is presiding the proceedings, also realises that the issue at stake is much larger than what meets the eye.
Court Martial presented a combination of both legal and poetic justice. — TNS

.Arun Khote
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