Dalits Media Watch
News Updates 13.08.15
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· Arrest Inspector Who Implicated 4 Dalits, Victim Urges TN CB-CID - The New Indian Express
· Give us a Slice Too, Say Couples - The New Indian Express
· The Times Of India
SC community cannot be treated differently: HC -
· 'Once passed, proper implementation of the amended SC/ST bill more important',
says former secretary P S Krishnan -
· 20 additional JNVs sanctioned in districts with more SC/ST population: Smriti Irani - The Economic Times
Note : Please find attachment for DMW Hindi (PDF)
The New Indian Express
Arrest Inspector Who Implicated 4 Dalits, Victim Urges TN CB-CID
CHENNAI: With no progress in the complaint against a police inspector who wrongly implicated him in a double murder case and detained and tortured him in custody, a Dalit youth from Thoothukudi came to Chennai to approach the ADGP to expedite the inquiry and take action against the officer. This October would mark the second anniversary of the horrific episode that Yesudasan and others underwent.
In Chennai to meet the CB-CID head on Wednesday, Yesudasan demanded that inspector Selvam, the officer who allegedly foisted the case against him and others, be arrested immediately, as there was no legal impediment against it.
After being implicated in the double murder and his 90-day custody, Yesudasan lost his job as a teller at a leading finance chain. He was later released from custody, and the four, including him, were cleared by another inspector who arrested the real culprits behind the murders.
"The whole episode has taken a toll on my life and has wreaked financial havoc on my family as I am now jobless. It is inspector Selvam's personal animosity that ruined our lives," said Yesudasan.
"I came to see the ADGP as the case was transferred to CB-CID two months ago. But I was not allowed to meet him as I did not have the case number. I met another IPS officer who remembers the case. They had not made any progress in arresting the inspector," he claimed.
Selvam, who was in-charge of Thattaparai police station, arrested the four Dalits, including Yesudasan, after they refused to a land deal that would have fetched Selvam about Rs 25 lakh in 2013.
After representations by the victims and the court's observations, an internal probe was ordered and Selvam was found guilty. He was suspended for two months after the report and booked for the same double murder and under the SC/ST (Prevention of atrocities) Act.
The New Indian Express
Give us a Slice Too, Say Couples
CHENNAI: Voices for creation of a special reservation category for children of inter-caste couples in educational institutions and government jobs have begun to emerge yet again in the wake of increasing cases of such couples being ostracised in Tamil Nadu. Though the Dravidian State had pioneered radical reforms like legitimising Self Respect Marriages in 1967 and leaders like Periyar and Annadurai strongly advocated inter-caste marriages to promote egalitarianism, violence continues to be unleashed against couples hailing from different communities.
In this backdrop, the CPM State council, in its last executive committee meeting, adopted a resolution seeking enactment of a law to provide for separate reservation for children of inter-caste couples.
"Inter-caste couples have to face opposition from family members and the local community. Ultimately, they are forced to flee. When they move to another place for livelihood, a special reservation would facilitate them to get social acceptance," argues K Kanagaraj, CPM State council executive committee member. In 1998, the Justice Mohan Committee, which probed caste clashes, had recommended that the government "consider the children born out of inter-caste marriages as a special category on priority in matters of admission to educational institutions and then government service, provided he/she possess the prescribed qualification." Social analysts, however, point out such reforms can't be introduced in the absence of consolidated data of inter-caste couples in Tamil Nadu.
Confirming this, a senior official of the State Registration Department said the "need for gathering such data had not arisen so far". Inter-caste marriages are registered at the local Sub-Registrar office, but consolidated figures are unavailable. The only data that is available is with the Social Welfare Department, which inter-caste couples approach to get financial aid. "This figure could be meagre because all inter-caste couples may not need aid. The actual number of such couples could be large considering the fact that many do not even register their marriage as their immediate concern is to overcome hurdles posed by family members and communities," says an analyst.
Societal pressure forces inter-caste couples to give the caste identity of either parent to their children.
"To avoid this, such children should be considered as a separate category and reservation must be provided to them," says the analyst. However, A R Venkatachalapathy, assistant professor at the Madras Institute of Development Studies, disagrees with the need for special reservations. "Parties like the CPM see this social issue mostly from the economic point of view, whereas the root cause lies in denying one's fundamental rights to marry someone from any caste. The government must ensure this right," he argues.
According to him, providing special reservation would be tantamount to applying 'punugu thailam' (civet oil perfume) on a wound in an attempt to cure it. Former Lok Sabha MP S K Kharventhan, who had piloted 'The Inter-caste Marriages (Reservation Provisions Bill' as a private member in Parliament 10 years ago, laments that the Bill was never taken up for discussion and lapsed when the term of the 14th Lok Sabha ended.
"I had moved the Bill after the Kerala High Court held that children born out of inter-caste marriages could not claim benefits of reservation in educational institutions even if one of the parents belonged to a Scheduled Caste/Tribe," he recalls. The court had said, "The burden lies on the person who is claiming the benefit of reservation to establish that he was subject to the same handicap and disadvantages as someone born as a member of SC/ST." This would affect children of divorced couples.
"In these cases, children are generally in the custody of mother and they stand to lose the reservation facility enjoyed by them so far," he points out.
Living in Fear is A Daily Affair
It has been three years since Kamalanathan (name changed), hailing from the Hindu Vannar community, fled his native village in Erode with his wife belonging to the Kongu Vellala Gounder community, following threats to their lives from the woman's family. But he still lives in fear.
To this day, the 29-year-old painter and his wife don't have the guts to return home or even reveal their location to anyone. "My wife is studying BE final year. For couples like us, who live in constant fear, providing separate category reservation for us and our children would go a long way in leading a peaceful life. We have to face innumerable problems if we reveal our castes," he told Express over phone from a municipality where he stays.
The case of Abirami, originally hailing from Soorakkottai in Thanjavur district, is worse. Hailing from the Kallar community, she had married Marimuthu, a Dalit, overcoming family opposition. "We fled our homes hoping to live happily. But my brother managed to trace us. He lured my husband on the promise of finding him a job. After that I got to see only my husband's mutilated body," she said.
It has been three years since Marimuthu was murdered and Abirami is still struggling to find a job to sustain and feed her three-year- old girl. "If the State government gives me a job, I can raise my child properly. For people like us, a special reservation would help find a job," said Abirami.
The Times Of India
SC community cannot be treated differently: HC
Holding that a member of the Scheduled Caste community "cannot be treated differently", the Madras High Court has issued a direction to HR & CE officials and police authorities to ensure that the deity of Arulmigu Bathrakaliammam temple in Nagapattinam district be taken on procession throughout the streets of Kallimedu village, in which members of the community were living.
Petitioner N. Pakkirisamy of Pazhakallimedu of Nagapattinam district alleged that members of the Scheduled Caste community in the village were not allowed to give ubayams ( abhishegam rights) to Arulmigu Bathrakaliammam temple in the village scheduled on August 14 and the procession with the temple deity was not to be allowed to be carried through the streets which predominantly had SC families.
Passing interim orders on a petition by N. Pakkirisamy, belonging to the SC community Justice M.M. Sundresh said, "Prima facie, this court is of the view that the petitioner cannot be treated differently. However, this is a matter which would be decided only after impleadment of opposite group, who are raising objection" and posted the matter after eight weeks.
Despite a promise by the Deputy Superintendent of Police made last year that the ubayam rights would be given from this year following a protest, it was not given to people in Pazhankallimedu village, he claimed, adding no breakthrough was achieved in the peace meeting which was convened this year.
Observing that the people of Pazhankallimedu have been discriminated as they belonged to SC community, the petitioner stated, "Even 65 years of inception of our Constitution, still we have been treated as untouchables. Article 15 says that there shall be no discrimination on the ground of sex, race, caste and place of birth."
'Once passed, proper implementation of the amended SC/ST bill more important',
says former secretary P S Krishnan
New Delhi: The amended Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act unanimously passed by the Lok Sabha is only half a step towards strengthening the rights of Dalits/Scheduled Castes/Adivasis/Scheduled Tribes and passing of it in Rajya Sabha and subsequent implementation of it is the remaining half step, believes former secretary to Government of India P S Krishnan.
The amended SC/ST Bill 2014 providing stringent actions for offences against SC/ST people was passed by Lok Sabha on August 4 and is due to be tabled before Rajya Sabha before it is sent to the President for according sanction for its implementation in all the states and Union Territories.
P S Krishnan, a former government of India secretary, who has been active in the field of social justice for SCs, STs, BCs including BCs of minorities for more than six and half decades is the driving force behind bringing significant amendments to the bill.
He has put tremendous efforts in collaboration with the national coalition of about 500 dalit and human rights organisations to make stronger the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities), 1989 (POA) Act.
The Bill brings within the ambit of atrocities, major IPC offences not specifically listed and IPC offences listed in the Schedule to the Bill. It also lists out the specific duties of public servants. Failure to perform them by a non-SC, non-ST public servant is punishable as in the original Act.
Speaking with TwoCircles.net, he shared his thoughts and vision regarding the bill. He also pondered over the hurdles in implementation of the bill and sincerely urged the NGOs, social workers, advocates and media to increase awareness about it.
"This is a significant half-step for the dalits/scheduled castes/adivasis/scheduled tribes who are a quarter of our population, supply the major part of our labour, are the most oppressed and downtrodden over the centuries till today and who are the victims of the most inhuman crimes," he said before appreciating the present minister for tabling the bill in Lok Sabha.
Although it is an important event for SCs/STs, Krishnan said, it seems it is not an important event for the national print and electronic media, "It was for the better protection of Dalits and Adivasis from atrocities that the POA Act 1989 was enacted. National media should contribute in increasing awareness so that growing atrocities against SCs/STs may be brought down," he opined.
Soon after passing of bill in the Lok Sabha, Krishnan requested major opposition parties and leaders to support the bill in the Rajya Sabha irrespective of other differences with the government so that the amendments are passed in this monsoon session itself. But due to the ongoing logjam in Rajya Sabha due to the strong demand by Congress for resignation of External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, the bill is not likely to be passed in this session.
"Our system is very slow and operates at its own speed. At times individual efforts reduces avoidable holdup," he said and recalled his way of working while he was in office: "I used to immediately carry the file to Rajya Sabha soon after passing of the bill in Lok Sabha. One needs that dedication to see bills are passed without unnecessary delay".
The recent conversion of 100-odd dalits in Haryana to Islam, he said, "can also be controlled with this law as people of other religion will have hesitation in approaching dalits with intention to promote their own religion and turn dalits from their traditional faith."
In regards with the Backward Classes he said, "They (BCs) can achieve their goals better by securing the cooperation of SCs and STs by giving them cooperation in their struggle against atrocities and 'untouchability' and for their other rights."
When asked if the bill is directed against non–SCs/STs, he told, "Most of the people of the non-Dalit, non-Adivasi society are law-abiding and have no criminal intent towards SCs and STs but certain elites who want to maintain age-old domination over SCs and STs commit, promote and encourage such crimes. Some political leaders resort to it for narrow electoral considerations."
"After passing of the bill in Rajya Sabha another challenge will be its implementation," Krishnan said adding, "That is where assistance from all quarters is required to reign in atrocities against SCs and STs."
According to him, the first major step required after the bill is given consent by the President will be to create awareness amongst the suffering SCs and STs about their increased rights who are more often oppressed and subjected to inhuman treatment by certain elites from the society. "NGOs and political parties claiming to work in the interest of SCs and STs must conduct programmes imparting awareness about the amendments made in the bill. Similarly journalists, advocates and media too can help in creating awareness," he opined.
He says there have been many cases reported from many states where police officers refused to file FIRs on the complaints of SC/ST victims and with the new amendments such suppression by police can be stopped.
On questioning how to tackle the cases which would arise out of personal enmity where any SC/ST would complain against non-SC/ST, he said: "That can be easily detected by police in their investigation but apprehension of such misuse of law is far less as compared to the recorded atrocities happening in the absence of such stringent provisions."
"Is this not a fact that numbers of cases have been reported from many states when police refused to file FIRs in genuine cases?" he questioned.
In the end he appealed to the masses of non-Dalit, non-Adivasi society to actively participate in eliminating atrocities against SCs and STs in cooperation with them.
The Economic Times
20 additional JNVs sanctioned in districts with more SC/ST population: Smriti Irani
NEW DELHI: Districts having large concentration of SC and ST population would soon have 20 additional Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas, with the government granting sanction to it, Lok Sabha was informed today.
HRD Minister Smriti Irani said "government has sanctioned 20 additional Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas (JNVs) in the districts having large concentration of SC/ST population and two more JNVs in Manipur as a special case."
JNV scheme provides for opening up of one JNV in each district of the country. Out of the 628 districts in the country as on April 15, 2012, JNVs have been sanctioned in 576 districts located in 35 states and UTs, except Tamil Nadu.
Of the remaining 52 districts, six districts have no rural population and therefore, JNVs are needed to be opened in the remaining districts, Irani said during Question Hour.
Replying to queries, she said that opening of new Kendriya Vidyalayas (KVs) and JNVs was a continuous process which depended on availability of funds and willingness of concerned state government to make available suitable and requisite land free of cost for construction of school buildings.
Irani said at present there was no proposal to increase the number of seats in the existing KVs as the available infrastructure of these schools was being fully utilised.
The Minister said as on date, there are 1,119 KVs in the country and during 2013-14, government had approved opening of 54 new KVs of which 27 KVs have already been made functional.
"The remaining KVs have not been made functional so far, primarily due to non-transfer of requisite extent of land by the sponsoring authorities," she said.
News monitored By AMRESH & AJEET