Category Archives: Dalit-Bahujans

Documentary – Bant Singh : The Warrior


Bant Singh

Bant Singh

Bant Singh2

Bant Singh is a lower caste Mazhabi, Sikh labourer and singer from the Jhabhar village in Mansa district, Punjab, India, who has emerged as an agricultural labour activist, fighting against the power of the landowner. Described by Amit Sengupta as “an icon of Dalit resistance he has been active in organizing poor, agricultural workers, activism that continues despite a 2006 attack that cost him both of his lower arms and his left leg.”

After his minor daughter was raped by some powerful men in 2000, he dared take them to court, an unusual occurrence when a Dalit is raped by a non-Dalit, braving threats of violence and attempted bribes. The trial culminated in life sentences for three of the culprits in 2004, “the first time that a Dalit from the region who had complained against upper-caste violence had managed to secure a conviction.”

On the evening of 7 January 2006 Bant Singh was returning home through some wheat fields. He had just been campaigning for a national agricultural labour rally to be held in Andhra Pradesh in January. He was suddenly waylaid by a gang of seven men, suspected to be sent by Jaswant and Niranjan Singh, the current and former headmen of his village who have links with the Indian National Congress party. One of them brandished a revolver to prevent any resistance while the other six set upon him with iron rods and axes beating him to pulp.

He was left for dead, and a phone call was made to Beant Singh, a leading man in Jhabhar, to pick up the dead body. However, Bant Singh was alive, though barely.

Source – Wikipedia and Chords of Justice

Leave a comment

Filed under Caste Discrimination, Casteism, Dalit, Dalit-Bahujans, Documentary, Dr B R Ambedkar

26th December in Dalit History – B’day of Annai Menambal Shivaraj


Annai Meenambal Shivaraj was born 26 December at Rangoon in Burma. She completed her F.A in 1917 from Ranggon College, Ranggon. She returned to Madras and got married to N.Shivaraj in 1918, who was a renowned Dalit leader. She was actively involved in politics with her husband. Her entry into politics started in 1928 with her speech in a public welcoming Simon commission. She was the first Scheduled Caste woman to become member of Madras Corporation representing Madras University senate. She was the leader of South Indian Scheduled Castes federation (SCF). She bestowed the title ‘Periyar’ (great one) to self respect movement leader E.V.Ramasamy.

Annai Menambal Shivaraj

Annai Menambal Shivaraj

She presided over the SCF women’s conference held on 23 September 1944 in Madras, which was attended by Dr.Ambedkar. She also presided over the All India SCF women’s conference held in Bombay on 6 May 1945. She was the honorary magistrate for Madras province, member of post war rehabilitation committee, director of Scheduled castes cooperative bank, leader of Nellikuppam Parry company labourers, senate member of Annamalai university. She was active in public service till 1980. She is fondly called as ‘Annai’ Meenambal (Mother) by Dalits. She died on 30 November 1992 at the age of 92. Her son was Dayashankar IPS (Retd.). Very little known fact is Mrs.D.Sabitha IAS, Principal Secretary to Tamilnadu government, School education department is annai Meenambal’s grand daughter.

Leave a comment

Filed under Caste Discrimination, Dalit-Bahujans, Dr B R Ambedkar, Today in Dalit History, Today in History

22nd November in Dalit History – B’day of Jalkari Bai


Jalkari Bai was born on 22nd November 1830 in village Bhojalla on Balaji Marg. His father was Sadova Singh and mother named Dhania but some authors say her father was named as Mool Chand & mother Jamuna Devi. They were agriculturists, belonging to Kori Caste of Untouchables having  Laria Gotar.  Kori Caste has a glorious history and Kories are said to have been rulers of this country . Shamba Asur  Maharaj  was a Kori ruler as also revered  Yashodhara wife of Gotam Budha was too from Kori Caste. How this so warrior and prosperous Kori peoples were reduced to a unknown position is a mystery. Jalkari Bai also nicknamed as Chaloria was the only child of her parents and she lost her mother at a very young age. So she was brought up by her father with utmost care, love and affection. Jalkari Bai grew into a strong, courageous, beautiful girl.
She was an Indian woman soldier who played an important role in the Indian Rebellion of 1857 during the battle of Jhansi. She was a soldier in the women’s army of Queen Laxmibai of Jhansi.

Leave a comment

Filed under Dalit-Bahujans, Dr B R Ambedkar, Today in Dalit History, Today in History

Full-form of AMBEDKARITE


Full-form of AMBEDKARITE

Awake
Mindful
Buddhist
Energetic
Devoted
Knowledgable
Ardent
Rationalist
Intelligent
Trustworthy
Egoless-being

Leave a comment

Filed under Dalit-Bahujans, Dr B R Ambedkar

24th September in Dalit History – Poona Pact


Poona Pact, Agreed to by Leaders of Caste-Hindus and of Dalits, at Poona on 24-9-1932

The following is the text of the agreement arrived at between leaders acting on behalf of the Depressed Classes and of the rest of the community, regarding the representation of the Depressed Classes in the legislatures and certain other matters affecting their welfare

1. There shall be seats reserved for the Depressed Classes out of general electorate seats in the provincial legislatures as follows: –

Madras 30; Bombay with Sind 25; Punjab 8; Bihar and Orissa 18; Central Provinces 20; Assam 7; Bengal 30; United Provinces 20. Total 148. These figures are based on the Prime Minister’s (British) decision.

2. Election to these seats shall be by joint electorates subject, however, to the following procedure –

All members of the Depressed Classes registered in the general elec- toral roll of a constituency will form an electoral college which will elect a panel of tour candidates belonging to the Deparessed Classes for each of such reserved seats by the method of the single vote and four persons getting the highest number of votes in such primary elections shall be the candidates for election by the general electorate.

3. The representation of the Depressed Classes in the Central Legislature shall likewise be on the principle of joint electorates and reserved seats by the method of primary election in the manner provided for in clause above for their representation in the provincial legislatures.

Dr. Ambedkar at the Round Table Conference

Dr. Ambedkar at the Round Table Conference

CENTRAL LEGISLATURE

4. In the Central Legislature 18 per cent of the seats allotted to the general electorate for British India in the said legislature shall he reserved for the Depressed Classes.

5. The system of primary election to a panel of candidates for election to the Central and Provincial Legislatures as i herein-before mentioned shall come to an end after the first ten years, unless terminated sooner by mutual agreement under the provision of clause 6 below.

6. The system of representation of Depressed Classes by reserved seats in the Provincial and Central Legislatures as provided for in clauses (1) and (4) shall continue until determined otherwise by mutual agreement between the communities concerned in this settlement.

7. The Franchise for the Central and Provincial Legislatures of the Depressed Classes shall be as indicated, in the Lothian Committee Report.

8. There shall be no disabilities attached to any one on the ground of his being a member of the Depressed Classes in regard to any election to local bodies or appointment to the public services. Every endeavour shall be made to secure a fair representation of the Depressed Classes in these respects, subject to such educational qualifications as may be laid down for appointment to the Public Services.

(Adult franchise but reservation has been provided for Dalits on population basis, till 1960),

9. In every province out of the educational grant an adequate sum shall be ear-marked for providing educational facilities to the members of Depressed Classes,

Source – Ambedkar.org

1 Comment

Filed under Buddha, Caste Discrimination, Dalit-Bahujans, Equal Rights, Today in Dalit History, Today in History

RESERVATION – 10 Questions and Answers


Q 1: What is reservation?

The word reservation is a misnomer. The appropriate word for it used in the Indian Constitution is Representation. It is not given to anyone in his individual capacity. It is given to individual as a representative of the underprivileged community. The beneficiaries of reservations are in turn expected to help their communities to come up.

Q 2: Why reservation?

The policy of reservations is being used as a strategy to overcome discrimination and act as a compensatory exercise. A large section of the society was historically denied right to property, education, business and civil rights because of the practice of untouchability. In order to compensate for the historical denial and have safeguards against discrimination, we have the reservation policy.

Q 3: Were Reservations incorporated by the founding fathers of the constitution only for first 10 years?

Only the political reservations (seats reserved in Loksabha, Vidhansabha, etc) were to be reserved for 10 years and the policy review was to be made after that. That is why after every 10 years the parliament extends political reservations.

The 10 year limit for reservations is not true for the reservations in education and employment. The reservations in educational institutions and in employment are never given extension as it is given for the political reservations.

Q 4: Why give reservations on basis of caste?

To answer this question we must first understand why the need for the reservations has arisen. The cause for the various types of disabilities that the underprivileged castes in India face / have faced, is the systemic historical subjugation of a massive magnitude based on caste system having a religious sanction. Therefore if the caste system was the prime cause of all the disabilities, injustice and inequalities that the Dalit-Bahujans suffered, then to overcome these disabilities the solution has to be designed on basis of caste only.

Q 5: Why not on basis of economic criterion?

Reservations should never be based on economic status for various reasons as follows:

1. The poverty prevailing among the Dalit-Bahujans has its genesis in the social-religious deprivations based on caste system. Therefore poverty is an effect and caste system a cause. The solution should strike at the cause and not the effect
2. An individual’s Economic status can change. Low income may be taken to mean poverty. But the purchasing value of money, in India, depends upon caste. For example a Dalit can not buy a cup of tea even in some places.

3. Practical difficulties in proving economic status of individual to the state machinery are many. The weak may suffer.

4. In caste ridden India infested with rampant corruption, even for an unchangeable status like caste, the false “Caste Certificate” can be purchased. How much easier will it be to purchase a false “Income Certificate”? So income based reservation is impractical. It is no use arguing when both certificates can be bought, why caste only should form basis of reservation. It is certainly more difficult to buy a false caste certificate than a false income certificate.

5. Reservation is not an end in itself. It is a means to an end. The main aim is to achieve the active participation and sharing by the “socially excluded” humanity in all the fields of the affairs of the society. It is not panacea for all ills, neither it is permanent. It would be a temporary measure till such time the matrimonial advertisements in newspaper columns continue to contain the mention of caste.

Q 6: Should there be a creamy layer criterion or not?

The demand from anti-reservationists for introduction of creamy layer is ploy to scuttle the whole effectiveness of reservations. Even now out of all seats meant for SC/STs in IITs , 25-40 % seats remain vacant because it seems IITs do not find suitable candidates. Just imagine what would happen if by applying creamy layer criterion the SC/ST middle class, lower middle class people who are in position to take decent education are excluded from reservations benefit ! Will the poor among SC/STs be able to compete with these ‘privileged ‘students’ trained under Ramaiah and at various IIT-JEE training centers at Kota ?
Of course Not.
This will lead to 100 % seats in IITs for SC/STs going vacant.

Q 7: How long should the reservations continue?

The answer to this question lies with the anti-reservationists. It depends on how sincerely and effectively the policy makers which constitute “privileged castes” people in executive, judiciary and legislature, implement the reservations policy.
Is it just on part of “privileged castes” people who have enjoyed undeclared exclusive reservations for past 3000 years and continue to enjoy the same even in 21st century in all religious institutions and places of worship, to ask for the timelines for reservations policy?
Why do not they ask, how long the exclusive reservations for particular community in the religious institutions and places of worship are going to continue?
The people who have acquired disabilities due to inhuman subjugation for 3000 years will need substantial time to come over those disabilities. 50 years of affirmative action is nothing as compared to 3000 years of subjugation.

Q 8: Will not the reservations based on castes lead to divisions in the society?

There are apprehensions that reservations will lead to the divisions in the society. These apprehensions are totally irrational. The society is already divided into different castes. On the contrary reservations will help in annihilating the caste system. There are around 5000 castes among the SC/ST and OBCs. By grouping these various castes under 3 broad categories of SC, ST and OBC, the differences among 5000 separate castes can be abridged. This is a best way of annihilation of castes. Therefore rather than making rhetoric about reservations leading to divisions in the society the anti-reservationists should make honest and sincere efforts to annihilate castes. Have these people made any efforts towards this direction? In most of the cases the answer is NO. The people making these anti-reservations rhetoric, all this time have been enjoying all the privileges that the Indian caste system offers to the “Privileged Castes”. As long as they enjoy the privileges of the caste system they do not have any qualms regarding it. But when it comes to making castes as basis for achieving social equality by providing representations these same people make noises. These are the double standards of highest order practiced by the ‘privileged’ people.

Q 9: Will not reservations affect the Merit?

As regards to how Merit is defined in a very narrow sense and what it actually means, following is the quote from an article by Prof Rahul Barman of IIT Kanpur.

Reservations of more than 60 % have existed in the 4 states of southern India and around 40 % in Maharashtra since last 50 years. On other hand in the north Indian states the 15 % ‘privileged castes’ have been enjoying 77 % of the seats in educational institutions and in employment (assuming that 23 % reservations for SC/STs are totally filled, which is not the case). The World Bank study has found that all the 4 south Indian states are much ahead of north Indian states in terms of their human development index. It is a common knowledge that all the southern states and Maharashtra are much ahead in fields of education, health, industrial development, in implementing poverty alleviation schemes, etc. than the north Indian states. This shows that reservations have indeed helped the southern Indian states in making progress on various fronts. Whereas lack of adequate reservations is responsible for the lack of development in most of the north Indian states.

Q 10: Have existing reservations for SC/STs been effective or not?

The reservation policy in the public sector has benefited a lot of people. The Central government alone has 14 lakh employees. The proportion of Scheduled castes in class III and IV is well above the quota of 16 per cent and in class I and II, the proportion is around 8–12 per cent. So, the middle and the lower middle class that we see today from the Dalit community is because of reservation.

2 Comments

Filed under Caste Discrimination, Casteism, Dalit-Bahujans, Dr B R Ambedkar, Latest

Did you know? Mischief of Brahmins


Did you know? Mischief of Brahmins

William Carey was the first one who raised his voice against Sati System in India. Carey used his influential paper, Friend of India (which merged into Calcutta’s Statesman) to launch a campaign that got the British to abolish Sati. Raja Rammohun Roy (Brahmin from West Bengal) was disciple of William Carey but Brahmin media and Brahmin scholars projected Roy as the one who led to abolition of Sati. #Shame

William carey

Leave a comment

Filed under Caste Discrimination, Casteism, Dalit-Bahujans, Dr B R Ambedkar, Latest

Reservation for so called upper castes in paid seats!


And they talk about reservation for Dalits, how many Dalits can afford 4 Cr? Isn’t this a reservation for so called upper castes people? And what merit such upper caste students will have those are buying seats in colleges?

11107167_1651943275035441_3418087546049604150_n

Leave a comment

Filed under Caste Discrimination, Casteism, Dalit-Bahujans, Dr B R Ambedkar, Equal Rights, Latest