<SiteLock

Dalit women cases: Crime conviction rate poor

JAIPUR: Preliminary findings of a study by the state's Centre for Dalit Rights reveal that the conviction rate in cases related to rape and sexual assault of Dalit women is less than 2%. The centre is compiling a detailed study of over 50 such, the final report of which is expected to be released later this year.

The centre initiated the study a year ago and selected 50 most controversial and disputed cases across the state. The study was ordered after complaints of increasing "false cases" being filed by Dalit women. It aims to study the role of all stakeholders in such cases, including the victims' family, civil society, local administration and even the judiciary.

Read more...

Grain banks prove a boon for Dalits

PATNA: About 150 Grain banks being run in Patna, Bhojpur, Gaya, Jamui and Saharsa districts by Dalit women have come as a great relief for Musahar and other poor families. 

Fed up with hunger and poverty, around 2,000 Musahar Dalit women had set up Grain banks in 2002 in about 60 villages under Paliganj subdivision comprising Paliganj and Bikram blocks in Patna district. These banks, which provide grains on loan to needy Dalit families, have proved a boon for the poor and destitute families of the region, who had to hitherto depend on rich farmers and moneylenders in times of crises. Later, such banks were opened in Bhojpur, Gaya, Saharsa and Jamui districts.

Not only has the move helped the Dalit families to overcome hunger, it has also instilled self-confidence among them. It has rid them of high interest rate on loan besides encouraging the savings culture. 

Says Sudami Devi of Maner Telpa village under Bikram block in Patna district, "Earlier, we were forced to live in penury as we did not get enough wages as farm labourers. We were left to the mercy of rich farmers for sustenance. Now, we get grains at low interest rates from these banks," she said. 

Jirmania Devi of Paliganj block said, "These banks meet the needs of around 35 Musahar villages in Paliganj, with nearly 400 Musahar families benefiting." 

"Exploitation led to establishment of these Grain banks as Musahars and other landless agricultural labourers were exploited by landlords and not given their due wages, " said Pradeep Priyadarshi of Pragati Gramin Vikas Samiti, who was the man behind this initiative of Grain banks. 

"For a day's labour, we used to get one kg of grain, which sometimes went down to half-a-kg on the excuse of having been adjusted against pending loans. This encouraged us to set up the Grain banks," said a village woman, who refused to disclose her identity. "We were also humiliated on failing to return the borrowed foodgrain," 

Starting with an initial stock of 55kg of grain in 2002, the bank today has 1,560kg of rice as capital, said Punam Devi, one of the 26 members of the village samiti in Maner Telpa. The family borrowing wheat and rice has to pay one kg grain as interest for every five kilogram of grain, said Sudami Devi, the bank's secretary at Maner Telpa village. The banks do not charge interest from extremely poor women. Besides, they also donate foodgrains to families free of cost in the event of any death or physical disability. 

When contacted, food and consumer protection minister Shyam Rajak said, "The government is willing to provide help to such groups financially as well as in developing infrastructure. We would provide all possible help to them." 

Courtesy: TOI, June/15/11

Dalit women's aspirations brought home impact of 'double discrimination'

dalit women Dhaka Emily Esplen visited a community in Dhaka where inspiring community organisers are showing change is possible.

When I met members of the Dalit Women's Forum in Dhaka last month, they told me about the changes they want to see in their lives and communities. They want their daughters to go to school and stay in school.

Read more...

‘The Hague Declaration on the Human Rights and Dignity of Dalit Women’

The Hague, 21 November 2006


WE, the participants of the Hague Conference on Dalit Women’s Rights, held in The Hague on 20 and 21 November 2006, after deliberating upon the issues of discrimination, violence and impunity against Dalit women, adopt this Declaration on the Human Rights and Dignity of Dalit Women.

In South Asia – that is, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka – Dalits have endured discrimination based on work and descent for centuries, and this discrimination continues today. The Dalits – known as ‘untouchables’ or outcastes – number around two hundred and sixty million people in South Asia. On account of their caste, they experience discrimination, social exclusion and violence on a daily basis. Although economic growth in the region has been strong over the past decade, caste disparities remain and are in fact increasing. The situation of Dalit women in these countries needs urgent and special attention. They constitute one of the largest socially segregated groups anywhere in the world and face systemic and structural discrimination thrice over: as Dalits, as women, and as poor Systemic Discrimination, Violence and Impunity.

Read more...

The Status of Dalit Women in India’s Caste Based System

by Sonia Mahey, University of Alberta

In this paper I wish to present the devastating effects of the caste system on the educational, social, and economical status of Dalit women in modern India. My aim is to highlight the harsh reality of the suppression, struggle and torture Dalit women face every day of their miserable lives. The hardships of Dalit women are not simply due to their poverty, economical status, or lack of education, but are a direct result of the severe exploitation and suppression by the upper classes, which is legitimized by Hindu religious scriptures (Thind n.pag; Agarwal n.pag).

Read more...

Bhil Women Fight the Liquor Demons

by Rahul Banerjee 

There is a general perception that Adivasi women enjoy greater equality because tribal society is less patriarchal. The reality, however, is very different. Take the situation of Bhil tribal, Ramanbai, of Chandupura village in Madhya Pradesh's Khargone district. She says, "I am suffering from piles and the doctor at Sanawad has told me that I will have to get myself operated. Yet, my husband is refusing to part with the money." 

Kesarbai of the neighboring Okhla village also has problems. "I already have three daughters and don't want any more children, but my husband is insistent on a son. When he gets drunk he does not listen to any reason. If I resist him, he accuses me of being involved with another man." 

Read more...

Other Related Articles

The Journey of School Education for Bahujan and Impact of NEP 2020
Friday, 18 September 2020
  Naaz Khair   The National Education Policy, 2020 (NEP2020) has been approved by the Union Cabinet as of 29th July, 2020. The National Education Policies of 1968, 1986 and Plan of Action... Read More...
“Mannu”: A documentary turns Munnar upside down
Wednesday, 16 September 2020
  Srutheesh Kannadi Munnar has always been a place of attraction for tourists around the world because of the presence of the Western Ghats, climate and other geographical distinctiveness. The... Read More...
For the perfect progressive recipe, skip caste, sprinkle Dalit swadanusaar: Gaurav Somwanshi
Friday, 11 September 2020
  Gaurav Somwanshi (Round Table India and SAVARI have been hosting a series of online talks by activists and thinkers on issues of importance to the Bahujan. This is the transcript of Gaurav... Read More...
Statement of Solidarity for Dr. Maroona Murmu from the Faculty of Presidency University
Monday, 07 September 2020
We, the undersigned teachers of Presidency University, Kolkata, are shocked to know about the recent attacks on Dr. Maroona Murmu, Associate Professor of History, Jadavpur University, Kolkata.... Read More...
Reality of sanitation workers in India: Caste, Stigma and historical injustice
Monday, 07 September 2020
  Dhamma Darshan Nigam The reality about the life of sanitation workers is not just about unsafe working and living conditions, irregular and minimum wages, and their health conditions and... Read More...

Recent Popular Articles

Feminism is Brahminism
Saturday, 30 May 2020
Anu Ramdas This is the transcript of a preliminary talk on the topic of feminism is brahminism. First, thank you. It is so lovely to see all of you. Thank you for the opportunity. And I am not at all... Read More...
Why Dr. Devi Shetty’s 25 (or 2500) ‘ways to manage Covid-19’ should be rejected outright
Tuesday, 07 April 2020
  Dr. Sylvia Karpagam For far too long, Dr. Devi Shetty has been giving advice on a range of things, the most recent being the Covid-19 pandemic. This is a crucial public health period for... Read More...
How the Brahmin beat Corona
Sunday, 05 April 2020
  Kuffir (Round Table India is doing a series to put together the Bahujan perspective on the Coronavirus pandemic) Anu Ramdas: I would like to ask two questions. First, the updates you posted on... Read More...
Caste, Class and Corona
Tuesday, 31 March 2020
  Dr Jas Simran Singh Kehal 'Epidemiology is like a bikini; what is revealed is interesting; what is concealed is critical'. This statement by Peter Duesberg, a cancer epidemiologist, at... Read More...
Is there a space for North-Eastern identity among students' politics in Indian Universities?
Thursday, 23 April 2020
  Thangminlal (Lalcha) Haokip My colleagues have often asked me why University students from the North East do not take an active part in students' politics in mainland Indian Universities.... Read More...