Tag Archives: Caste system in India

NDTV covered Ambedkar Caravan among Dalit Camera, APSC, Dalit Nation & Dalit Solidarity UK


On 21st January 2016, Ambedkar Caravan’s website and twitter page (@Silent_Steps) was covered on NDTV prime time by Mr. Ravish. Many other twitter handles such as Dalit Camera, Dalit Dhamma, Dalit Diva, Dalit Solidarity UK, NACDAOR and APSC etc. Since then I have seen many so called upper castes coming to my twitter page and trying to ‘enlighten’ me about caste reality!

Respect and salute to all who are fighting against Brahmincal system of oppression.

Watch the full report on Digital Dalits

Watch only the report on Ambedkar Caravan website and Twitter handle @Silent_Steps below

 

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More than 100 forms of Untouchability and Caste Discrimination


According to a study conducted by Sakshi- Human Rights Watch[1], there are above 100 forms of untouchability and discrimination on SC STs is prevailing. These all are the gross violation of human rights and also violation of laws of the land.

Caste system

  1. Segregation of drinking vessels the SC STs are supposed to get their tumblers or bowls to relish the menu at these outlets.
  2.  In some instances Dalits are served in aluminium tumblers contrary to steel tumblers used for dominant caste groups.
  3. In case of common water source Dalits are not allowed to fetch water but dominant castes draw the water for the Dalits and pour into their pots. They have to wait until dominant caste people come and pleased to fetch the water for them.
  4. In certain cases Dalits and dominant castes stand in separate queues at different pulleys of the wells.
  5. Dalits are not supposed to touch the pots of dominant castes.
  6.  Dalits have to fetch water only after dominant castes draw water.
  7.  In most of the villages separate wells and bore-wells persist for Dalits and dominant caste. In case of acute shortage of water dominant castes can fetch water from Dalit water source. But on the contrary if similar situation arise for Dalits, they are denied. In case dominant castes want to fetch water from Dalits’ bore-well they primarily are supposed to clean the bore-well and its surroundings.
  8. In case of natural lakes, ponds and tanks Dalits are supposed to fetch from the downstream where dominant castes do not approach.
  9. Pouring drinking water in to the hands of SC STs instead of giving it in a glass
  10. Dalits are not allowed to enter into their houses and they are compelled to stand far away from the houses of dominant castes. Dalits can only go to certain parts of their houses i.e. the outer extension of the house, outside the threshold but not the interior parts of their houses. In some cases Dalits are allowed but they are asked to clean their feet and hands before they come into their houses. Dalits are sometime allowed to enter to store their agricultural produce at the time of harvest
  11. On occasion of marriage or a function in dominant caste families, Dalits are not invited, in case invited they are supposed to dine after the dominant caste finish their turn. In certain cases Dalits are supposed to get their plates and in certain instances they are told to wash their plates after the dinner.
  12. Some time they are served in towels or they hold their upper garment. In most of the cases Dalits are served at a distant place from the hosted premises.
  13. Segregation in seating – Dalit students have to sit separately that too at backside in the schools, Teachers abuse SC ST children by Caste Name and Not allowed to eat together with non-Dalit students, there will be segregation of Water facilities
  14. Discrimination between Dalit and non-Dalit teachers, Discrimination between Dalit students and non-Dalit teacher, Not admitting children in schools at dalit at SCST villages
  15. Prohibit to wear clean/good clothes come to the vicinity of dominates castes
  16. Dalits are not allowed to sit on public places such as Racchabanda[2], bus stops. Or Dalit allowed to sit but at down level
  17. Dalit have sit separately at some distance from other castes’ people.
  18. Dalit have to stand at these places with folded hands.
  19. Dalits are not allowed to walk with sandals in the vicinity of dominant castes.
  20. Not allowed to use umbrella in dominant caste localities.
  21. Not allowed to ride cycles, rickshaws, in certain cases not allowed going even on bullock carts.
  22. If non-Dalits encounter Dalit women in the way, Dalit women are supposed to walk at a distance.
  23. Dalit women should wear their saree above the knees and cover their head whenever they find non-Dalits walking in the way.
  24. Dalit women are not allowed to wear blouses.
  25. Dalit women are not allowed to wear gold jewellery
  26. Forced drum beating for funerals and festivals/jataras
  27. Forced grave digging and Cremation
  28. Harbingers death news
  29. Chappal Making
  30. Removal of carcass
  31. Animal Sacrifice
  32. Dalits are supposed to sweep the whole village at the time of festivals and jataras.
  33. Manual Scavenging
  34. Standing up in respect before dominant castes and standing with folding hands
  35. Denial of laundry service
  36. Dalits themselves take their clothes to dhobi ghat (place of washing clothes) and wet their clothes at lower level of the stream and wait till the dhobi washes.
  37. Even laundry shop owners deny ironing clothes of Dalits.
  38. They render service but they do not take grain as paid by the other non-dalit communities
  39. Dalits are denied to provide hair cutting services
  40. In some cases if a family member is providing hair cutting services to Dalits the same person is not supposed to provide to non-Dalits.
  41. Hair cutting saloons, a recent phenomenon in villages. If Dalits allowed into the shops but they use separate instruments.
  42. Dalits are allowed into shops, but are denied the service at home as they do to dominant castes.
  43. Person who serves dominant castes is not allowed to serve to the Dalits but another person from same family can provide service to the Dalits.
  44. In certain cases they render service to Dalits in Dalit locality but they purify themselves immediately after coming back to their house.
  45. Tailor does not touch while taking measurements, take measurements from distance.
  46. Darning services are not extended to Dalits as they do for non-Dalits,
  47. When Dalit goes to a tailor he/she should take the measurements at home
  48. Prohibited to touch pot while purchasing and they take whatever the potter gives
  49. Denial of Carpenter Services
  50. Prohibited enter into the shops
  51. Allowed but should not touch any thing
  52. Should stand in separate line not touching non-Dalits
  53. Not allowing to touch items and have to show with a small stick while purchasing
  54. Dalit can sell in the weekly market but they should only sell dry fish and fish.
  55.  Keeping money or items Dalits bought on floor
  56. Dalit should stand outside the shop and exchange takes place by throwing money and item.
  57.  Keeping separate tray for Dalit by which exchange takes place.
  58. In PDS Depots Dalit should stand outside the shop and exchange takes place by throwing money and item.
  59. Should stand carefully without touching the belongings of non-Dalits
  60. At any queue Separate timings for SC STs
  61. Dealer do not touch Dalits while giving provisions
  62. Discrimination at Working in the fields – Standing outside the field until non-Dalits finishes ritual performance in the beginning of agricultural activity.
  63. Entering into the fields only after non-Dalits
  64. Not allowed to take water from wells and pots
  65. Dalits have to bring drinking water to the working place.
  66. Need to keep their lunch boxes separately
  67. Need to sit separately while taking lunch
  68. Should not touch the vessels if the non-Dalit employer provides lunch
  69. Lease rates and conditions differ for Dalit tenants and dominant castes
  70. Discrimination in Payment of wages – No Physical contact, Keeping money on the floor, throwing in to hands
  71. When Dalits invite non-Dalit for some celebrations, they just come but don’t eat the food prepared by the Dalit but hire a man from their community and makes him cook separately for them.
  72. Non-Dalits never attend the functions or any kind of celebrations in the Dalit families but their quota of food should be ordered directly from the shop without getting into physical contact with Dalits.
  73.  Food for Dalits is served in leaves but for non-Dalits in plates.

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Students build a memorial for Rohith Vemula in the HCU campus.


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Students build a memorial for Rohith Vemula in the HCU campus.

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After ‘Cow Memorial’, Punjab Govt. will honor ‘Cow Bhakts’!


Few weeks back, Akali-BJP Punjab government announced to build a most expensive animal memorial – ‘Rashtriya Shaheedi Gau Smarak’ – in the country at Mansa. Government is planning to spend 5 crore rupees on this memorial.

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Source – Tribune India

In Punjab, where Dalits are suffering in all spheres of lives, casteist government is spending money on Cow memorial and Cow Bhakts, such a shame! Dalit students’ scholarships are delayed or many a times not even issues, Dalit farmers are suffering, salaries of many teachers are not issued on time, there are not proper teaching staff at government schools, where Dalits students mostly study. Casteist Punjab government is giving more importance to building cow shelters, providing electricity and water at every cow shelter in every district to providing basic education facilities at government schools. Still many Dalit houses in Punjab don’t have proper electricity or water supply but Punjab government has been spending money on cows!

Check also – Few posters against beef ban

One may be surprised to know that in Punjab there is Gau Sewa Commission to ‘prevent cruelties against the holy animal’! There are not sufficient funds to run SC/ST commission as government claims many times but Gau Sewa Commission is running properly! 

Today, casteist Punjab government announced that those who look after cows will be honored at Republic Day ceremony. Dalit heroes are ignored from history books or are not given due credit but stupid cow is given more importance and follower of an animal are rewarded! Only ignorant and casteists such as BJP and Akali leaders can do it.

Both these building cow memorial and honoring cow bhakts is another attempt please RSS, VHP peoples. Present Punjab government is destroying the rich history of Punjab and Sikhism. In Sikhism, cow was never worshiped. All these steps are making way for the RSS people to install Hindu gods at Golden Temple one day.

Read also – Will Sikh Leaders install Hindu Gods in the Golden Temple?

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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

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Conference on Caste & Development at London on 5th September 


In South Asia poverty persists alongside growing wealth.  A disproportionate number of those in extreme poverty are Dalits. Poverty, inequality and caste are deeply enmeshed, yet there is little appetite to address caste oppression in the international development community.

Caste-based discrimination remains one of the world’s worst and least addressed injustices, affecting the life chances of many millions of people and involving violence, untouchability and humiliation. This is despite the fact that South Asian governments have made caste discrimination illegal, and introduced various provisions and protections for Dalits.

In recent years, Dalits who have protested, claimed their rights, or struggled for dignity have often faced brutal reprisal. The issue of caste injustice has been silenced in wider national and international communities. It is assumed that caste inequality is an internal matter of culture and religion and that it will be erased by the forces of market economy and modernisation.

But the evidence seems to be against this. Research shows how caste is an ongoing aspect of modern economies, shaping labour markets, access to services, health, education, opportunity and well-being.
As the development of Sustainable Development Goals refocuses international attention on social inclusion and human rights for all, it is time to examine the relationship between caste and development.

It is in this context that a group of UK INGOs in collaboration with SOAS South Asia Institute decided to organise a one-day conference to shed light on the issue and generate debate:

  • Is caste a continuing force in South Asian economy and society?
  • Does caste injustice create economic discrimination today?
  • How do the effects of caste and gender intersect?
  • How has caste discrimination been challenged?
  • What role do international development agencies have?

Our speakers include prominent academics and practitioners from the sub-continent who will share their insights with an audience from the UK/international development community.  The event will bring together key world-leading researchers on caste, economy and development, the principal campaigners exposing the reality of caste-based discrimination and caste-gender intersections, and leaders and experts from organisations working practically for development with economic justice and Dalit human rights.

The conference will throw light on a subject that has been kept in the shadows. It will offer expertise for shaping appropriate policy on caste injustice, poverty and development by different development agencies.

This is a conference of vital importance to every organisation with an interest in development in South Asia – and beyond, since in today’s interconnected world caste-based discrimination is an issue of global importance.

It will be an interactive conference, with plenty of opportunity to contribute your own thoughts and experiences.

Caste – out of the shadows

Date: 5 September 2015Time: 9:00 AM

Finishes: 5 September 2015Time: 7:00 PM

Venue: Brunei GalleryRoom: Brunie Gallery Lecture Theatre and Suite

Type of Event: Conference

Book and get more information from here.

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Why I Hate Vivekananda – 16 Castiest Quotes of Vivekananda


1) I do not propose any leveling of castes. Caste is a very good thing. Caste is the plan we want to follow.

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2) The plan in India is to make everybody a Brahmin, the Brahmin being the ideal of humanity.

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3) Indian caste is better than the caste which prevails in Europe or America.

→ Which caste system prevails in Europe or America Mr. Vivekananda? Here he glorifies caste system in India!

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4) Where would you be if there were no caste? Where would be your learning and other things, if there were no caste? There would be nothing left for the Europeans to study if caste had never existed!

→ We would have been better off without caste, our situations would have been better. What learning so called caste system gave to Dalits? Caste system taught only discrimination.

→ Yeah, you guys invented caste system so that Europeans have something to study because poor Europeans didn’t have anything to study!

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5) Caste should not go; but should only be readjusted occasionally. Within the old structure is to be found life enough for the building of two hundred thousand new ones. It is sheer nonsense to desire the abolition of caste.

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6) Brainy Vivekananda suggested to lower castes that are fighting and writing against higher castes is of no use, learn Sanskrit and you problems will be solved! Such a brainy was our Swami!

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7) The Brahminhood is the ideal of humanity in India, as wonderfully put forward by Shankaracharya at the beginning of his commentary on the Gitâ, where he speaks about the reason for Krishna’s coming as a preacher for the preservation of Brahminhood, of Brahminness.

→  Dr. Ambedkar was against Brahminhood and Brahminism, which is a mentality of people that makes them to suppress and discriminate. Vivekananda supported Brahminism.

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8) This Brahmin, the man of God, he who has known Brahman, the ideal man, the perfect man, must remain; he must not go.

–> Yes, Vivekananda is against anyone fighting casteism, because fighting casteism is fighting against Brahmins, who are, of course, according to him, Gods on earth.

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9) This Brahmin, the man of God, he who has known Brahman, the ideal man, the perfect man, must remain; he must not go. And with all the defects of the caste now, we know that we must all be ready to give to the Brahmins this credit, that from them have come more men with real Brahminness in them than from all the other castes. That is true. That is the credit due to them from all the other castes.

–> Yes, Vivekananda is against anyone fighting casteism, because fighting casteism is fighting against Brahmins, who are, of course, according to him, Gods on earth.

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10) In India, even the lowest caste never does any hard work. They generally have an easy lot compared to the same class in other nations; and as to ploughing, they never do it.

–> Dalits and Shudras, in Vivekananda’s opinion, do no work. The fields plough themselves, by magic! And only hard work is done by Brahmins sitting in A.C. Temples and earning millions, sitting in A.C. is very tough work!

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11) Why is India not a superpower? Of course, because we “abolished caste”:

“Then what was the cause of India’s downfall? — The giving up of this idea of caste. As Gitâ says, with the extinction of caste the world will be destroyed. Now does it seem true that with the stoppage of these variations the world will be destroyed…Therefore what I have to tell you, my countrymen, is this: that India fell because you prevented and abolished caste… Let Jati have its sway; break down every barrier in the way of caste, and we shall rise.”

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12) So what is the basis of the Indian’s social order? It is the caste law. I am born for the caste, I live for the caste. I do not mean myself, because, having joined an Order, we are outside. I mean those that live in civil society. Born in the caste, the whole life must be lived according to caste regulation.

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13) Now look at Europe. When it succeeded in giving free scope to caste and took away most of the barriers that stood in the way of individuals, each developing his caste — Europe rose. In America, there is the best scope for caste (real Jati) to develop, and so the people are great.

–> Here Mr. Vivekananda again glorifies the caste system! First thing first, Mr. Vivekananda, there was/is no caste in western societies.  

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14) “As Manu says, all these privileges and honours are given to the Brahmin, because “with him is the treasury of virtue”. He must open that treasury and distribute its valuables to the world. It is true that he was the earliest preacher to the Indian races, he was the first to renounce everything in order to attain to the higher realisation of life before others could reach to the idea. It was not his fault that he marched ahead of the other caste. Why did not the other castes so understand and do as he did? Why did they sit down and be lazy, and let the Brahmins win the race?”

–> Vivekananda is a defender of Manu, the “great” law-giver, and blames the lower castes for their sorry lot. Is it surprising that most of the followers of the cult of Vivekananda are high caste Hindus?

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15) The only safety, I tell you men who belong to the lower castes, the only way to raise your condition is to study Sanskrit, and this fighting and writing and frothing against the higher castes is in vain…

–> Vivekananda doesn’t want that Dalits write against their oppressors and he wants that Dalits keep on suffering silently! Lower castes fight is for equality and Sanskrit is a language of discrimination and it originated to maintain the caste discrimination. How learning Sanskrit will help lower castes get jobs, respect and dignity and how it will solve the problem of caste discrimination? I am not able to understand, can you?

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16) To the non-Brahmin castes I say, wait, be not in a hurry. Do not seize every opportunity of fighting the Brahmin, because, as I have shown, you are suffering from your own fault.

–> Vivekananda blames lower castes for their suffering. Yeah, as if while studying, lower castes themselves poured lead in their own ears, cut their own tongue and plucked their own eyes after reading!

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References – 

  • Swami Vivekananda, “The Abroad and the Problems at Home”, The Hindu, Madras, February 1987, in “Interviews”, The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda, Volume 5, Access it from here.
  • Swami Vivekananda, in “The Future of India”, Delivered at Victoria Hall, Madras, in “Lectures from Colombo to Almora”, Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda, Volume 3, Access it from here.
  • Swami Vivekananda, in “Women of India”, Delivered at the Shakespeare Club House, in Pasadena, California, on January 18, 1900, in “Lectures and Discourses”, Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda, Volume 8, Access it from here.
  • Swami Vivekananda, in “A Plan of Work for India”, in “Writings: Prose”, The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda, Volume 4, Access it from here.
  • Vivekananda’s Ideological Yatra

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What is the caste of your Sperms? 


Caste matters everywhere, I have been writing about it since long time. It is nothing new that caste matters everywhere and Indian couples, who could not have their own babies, always demanded for the ‘brahmin sperms’ from the sperm banks. Same applies to blood banks also, people have been reported demanding blood from particular castes!

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It is a mindset of the people that if sperm is from Dalit or lower castes then they won’t accept that and if they accepted that sperm they will become impure! Caste is so deeply embedded in Indian society that caste comes into play even before baby is born and it stays with child throughout the life and it doesn’t even leave the person after death – remember there are separate burning places or burial places in India!

It is the parents who teach their kids about the caste. When parents are demanding ‘brahmin sperms’ how can take help make India a casteless society? These parents will teach there kids about their caste and how to discriminate. We believe such couples should not be given any sperm, they don’t deserve to have a baby!

Will this sick mentality of people change? What do you think? Let us know in the comments!

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