Fighting peripheralization: The Dalit movement against a Hindu caste-wall in Kerala

 

T T Sreekumar

The Dalit land rights movement in Vadayambady, Kerala, against a 'Caste Wall' built by a Hindu temple run by the upper caste Nair Shudras and their organization called Nair Service Society (NSS) is one movement that need to be reckoned for its close relationship with the trajectories of the socio-political and economic history of anti-caste struggles in the region. The wall has been built around a playground that has been customarily used as common property by the Dalit communities living in the scheduled caste colonies surrounding the temple. An upper caste temple in the vicinity of the colonies itself is a testimony to the history of opportunistic land grabbing in the name of religion.

vadayambady caste wall

The temple is of a very recent origin and is built on a piece of land owned by a Nair who used to hold evening prayers there until his death. The NSS first acquired this private land, built the temple there and later clandestinely obtained the title deed for the revenue land lying adjacent to it, customarily used as common property by Dalits living in the colonies surrounding the land. Last year the temple began to deny entry to Dalits into the playground claiming ownership rights. When this move was challenged by the local Dalit community, the NSS, in complicity with the revenue authorities built a stone wall preventing the entry of Dalits into the filed. The local Dalit community which has been traditionally the users of the land symbolically pulled down part of the wall and started an agitation to reclaim their customary rights. The agitation resulted in unprecedented police brutality, the framing of false cases and arrests and torture of activists and also of reporters whom the police suspected of being sympathetic to the cause of the struggle. The ruling CPIM dispensation has unleashed a regime of terror and intimidation against the Dalit population who are determined to fight and expose the coercive tactics of the upper castes and terrorization by the state police.

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Brahmin-Baniya Nexus Through a Subaltern Lens: Review of Akhila Naik's Bheda

 

Sayali Z

It is your claim to equality which hurts them. They want to maintain the status quo. If you continue to accept your lowly status ungrudgingly, continue to remain dirty, filthy, backward, ignorant, poor and disunited, they will allow you to live in peace. The moment you start to raise your level, the conflict starts. ~ Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar

bheda

 Akhila Naik's debut novel - Bheda is a story of Dalit assertion and the violent conflict that ensues as a result of this assertion. It traces the story of how Dalits organize themselves, raise their voice and fight against a Brahminical system heavily stacked against them. In a simple yet sharp and powerful language, the novel presents its readers with deep insights into many of the socio-political failings in contemporary Odisha, in particular, and India, in general. Be it the rise of RSS, the increasing violence against Dalits or the rampant economic and social inequality, all of it can be traced to the one ugly giant called Brahmanism. The book cuts through the gimmick frequently peddled by progressive Brahmans that 'their' Hinduism is different from the violent Hindutva.

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National Girl Child Day in the Age of Sex Selection

 

Dr Jas Simran Singh Kehal

jas kehalIndia observes 24th January as National Girl Child Day or Rashtriya Balika Divas. This day is dedicated to the welfare of the girl child to ensure that girls are born, cared for and brought up with equal opportunities in terms of health, nutrition, and education. This initiative was undertaken by the Indian Government in 2009 to commemorate 24th January 1966, when Indira Gandhi became the first woman prime minister of India.

Girls have always and everywhere been considered to be lesser of the two beings of the human species. They lag behind boys in access to all basic essentials of life. They have fewer chances to be born, lesser access to nutrition, education and healthcare and least likely to lead the family. Although this is a worldwide scenario, it is more relevant in a developing country like ours. It may appear strange to imagine how this situation came into being especially in a country like India where women are traditionally worshipped in the form of various goddesses and deities.

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Caste in Muslim Theology

 

Lecture organized by Pasmanda Students in collaboration with Syahi Literary Society, Students Union, on 27 January 2018

At Library Conference Hall,

Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Mumbai

Caste in Muslim Theology

by

Masood Alam Falahi
 

Professor, Department of Arabic,
Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti
Urdu, Arabi-Farsi University,
Lucknow

Caste in Muslim Theologies 

Islam is an egalitarian religion. It does not believe in any kind of identity i.e. nation, family, caste, race, culture. It rejected the concept of superiority in any form.

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Who is eating up 711 million budget of minorities in Sindh?

 

Sufi Ghulam Hussain

sufi 2In Pakistan, 'minority' as a term is implied to mean religious minorities, or non-Muslims. Constitutionally, 'minority affairs' is a provincial subject. Since, the problem of caste is denied, there is no specific budget allocated for Scheduled Castes or Dalits in Pakistan. The State of Pakistan gives primacy to the category of 'minority' to subsume Scheduled Castes under it without allocating any specific budget for it.

Minority Affairs department was established in 1995, after separating it from the Religions Affairs department to facilitate the formulation of overall policy of the minorities. It aimed at providing financial assistance, scholarship, and medical treatment, marriage dowry for the deserving, repair and maintenance of religious places of Minority Communities in the Province of Sindh1.

In the financial year 2017-18, 711.6 million rupees were allocated for the minorities by the government of Sindh2. From June, 2017 to June 2018, it planned to spend 499.05 million rupees on the repair and construction of Hindu temples and dharamshalas and satsang halls near temples and dharamshalas. Except for the 7 million amount allocated but unapproved for the construction of the Monument of Dalit hero Rooplo Kolhi, and construction of shed, washrooms and flooring of the yard at Nagarparkar, the budget did not show any amount specifically allocated for Dalits in Sindh.

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Several attempts to break the Mahar Maraṭha brotherhood

 

 Dipankar Kamble

dipankar kambleIn the late 1700s and early 1800s, Bajirao 2 the Peshwa of Pune executed  Manu Smiriti in the most extreme manner in his regime, The Untouchables (Mahars, Chambhars, Maṅgs) were made to wear a pot around their necks and were made to tie a broom to there waists so that their saliva and foot marks would not pollute the land.

When the British wanted to conquer India they recognised the potential of Maharnags as it was considered as a martial community. They approached the Maharnags and gave them the offer of admission in the British Army. Mukti Nayak Sidnak went to the Peshwa Bajirao II and made him aware of the scenario and offered him that the Maharnags will fight for the Peshwa Army provided , after the battle the Peshwa would admit Maharnags in his army. The Peshwa dismissed the offer and insulted Sidnag. 

 The Maharnags entered the British army and call it frustration, revenge, anger, fight for self-respect, they were so aggressive that an army of 500 Maharnags defeated the army of 28000 Peshwas.

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Bhima-Koregaon: contact list of lawyers working to release arrested youth

 

Round Table India

ambedkar age somnath

As the media continues the blackout of the massive numbers of arrests of young men who the police have identified as Buddhists and or Ambedkarites from Dalit communities all over Maharashtra, social media networks are working hard to keep information flowing to the affected families and victims of police action. Several independent lawyers and lawyer’s association have come forward to fight the cases pro bono. Courts in Panvel saw lawyers rapidly taking in as many cases as they could without any talk of money. Similar scenes were witnessed in many others courts, Kalyan Lawyers Association and Indian Lawyers Association along with others are working round the clock to have the courts release the unprecedented number of arrested people.

At Aurangabad where thousands of youth have been taken by the police, a delegation of lawyers and activists are calling on authorities to immediately stop the arrests and the psychological tactics of terrorizing families with continuous combing operations looking for Ambedkarite youth. Maharashtra Lawyers Organization Pune’s delegation was to meet the police commissioner at Pune District court, Shivajinagar today.

These are lists of phone numbers of lawyers who are providing legal services to the families whose members have been arrested since the last few days. Please share them with friends and families who are reaching out for help through various means.

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