The death of Anil Meena


Anoop Kumar

(First published in The Indian Express in March, 2012, we're reproducing this article on Dalit and Adivasi students' suicides in India's premier higher educational institutions to commemorate the death of Senthil Kumar, a student of University of Hyderabad, on 26th February, 2009)

Suicides by Dalit and tribal students is a story of discrimination

Merit is important — students have to go through gruelling entrance tests to prove their worth before joining any educational institution to become doctors, engineers, scientists.

In 2010, Anil Meena, from a tribal family of agriculturalists, a school topper, with 75 per cent marks in 10+2, covered the distance of over 500 km from his village in Baran district, Rajasthan, to Delhi. He had again proved his merit in one of the toughest medical entrance exams to become a doctor at one of the country's prestigious educational institutions — the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).


Mulnivasi Sangh, JNU, forges a first-of-its-kind Commemoration


A Round Table Discussion on "Celebrating Centenary of Babasaheb's Journey to Columbia"

[Via Amol Vajji]

Babasaheb's journey to Columbia in 1913 marks the completion of a century in 2013 which, according to Mulnivasi Sangh (JNU), must be celebrated by Mulnivasi people with great vigor and enthusiasm. With this jovial idea, the organization successfully organized a Round Table Discussion on "Celebrating Centenary of Babasaheb's Journey to Columbia" at Jawaharlal Nehru University on 16 February, 2013. The Round Table was chaired by Mr. Ganesh Manjhi (Research Scholar, JNU) with a panel consisting of Mr. Anil Kumar (Member, Mulnivasi Sangh, JNU), Mr. Amol Vajji (President, Mulnivasi Sangh, JNU), Mr. Babu Waghmare (Member, Mulnivasi Sangh, Delhi State), Ms. Neetisha Xalxo (Research Scholar, JNU) and Mr. Arvind Kumar (Centre for Arabic Language, JNU).

j 4

The programme started with the screening of a video of Nicholas Dirks (Eminent Anthropologist) paying tribute to Babasaheb at Columbia University in 2010. Thereafter Mr. Ganesh Manjhi, the chair, elaborated upon the need of celebration of the Centenary by calling attention of audience towards some moot questions – What if Babasaheb had not gone to Columbia? He presented with greater emphasis that what would have been our situation, had Babasaheb not come back to India? To do away with the conspiratorial 'reductionism' with Babasaheb, the chair also put forth an issue of Babasaheb's contribution in the nation-building process. Mr. Ganesh Manjhi asked the panel to sketch Babasaheb's scholarship having impact on the lives of Mulnivasis.


Sunil Yadav versus the BMC


Ajmal Khan

The story of Sunil Yadav is an inspiring one for not only Dalits but everyone. He is a first generation literate from the Scheduled Caste community in Maharashtra who had joined as a conservancy worker in the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), Mumbai. He joined soon after the death of his father in 2005 as class -VI employee. Being the sole breadwinner of the six member family, despite all the hardships, he managed to complete a double masters and diploma in social work and mass communication while he was working. Today he is a MA Globalisation and Labour student of Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Mumbai and also holds an offer to go for an exchange progamme to University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg in South Africa.

Now here comes the BMC - he had applied for study leave as he got admitted in TISS; its been nine months now, BMC has not been taken any action on his application. He attended the classes during the day and worked at night. When there was no response on his leave application, Sunil field an RTI asking who is eligible for a sabbatical. He was told by the Public Information Officer of the D Ward of BMC that, a Safai Karmachari is not eligible to get study leave. According to the service rules of BMC, any employee is eligible for study leave if the course is going to be helpful for the development of the employee. This is the first time in the history of Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation that a Safai Karmachari is seeking a study leave.


Rally to Outlaw Caste Discrimination in London


Rally in Parliament Square, London,

On Monday, 4th March, 2013, 1.30 pm – 3.30 pm

The Peers of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Dalits have moved an amendment in Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (ERR) Bill to make 'caste' a protected characteristic in the Equality Act. The House of Lords will debate the amendment on March 4 and given time will call for a vote.

If successful, this would mean that Caste Discrimination will finally be Outlawed in the UK


Mystery Disappearance of Majoni Das


Women in Governance (WinG)-India, Women Alliance on Violence Against Women and Family members of Majoni Das

We will not allow Majoni to be the next in the list of those disappeared from custody mysteriously in this region. The family members have the right to know the whereabouts and safety of their daughter. The Police should provide the information ~ Bondita Acharya, WinG-India

Guwahati Feb. 20, 2013.

Enforced disappearances have been a very severe and a common human rights issue especially in North East India. The special powers entrusted upon the armed police and Police administration either by AFSPA or other draconian laws like UAPA has led to severe violation of human rights of common people resulting into disappearances, extrajudicial killings, mental harassment, rape as well as sexual assault.

Majoni Das, a woman activist, teacher, writer from Sibsagar has been a victim of enforced disappearance in suspicion of having links with insurgent groups. Majoni Das, D/O Mr. Dimbeswar Das, aged 30, was an active member women movement Nari Adhikar Suraksha Samiti (NASS) and also involved with fortnightly news paper namely AMI. Due to the poor financial condition of the family she was working with Purva Bharati Educational Trust, Jorhat, for last 13 months as a warden of the hostel run by Purva Bharati Educational Trust, Jorhat Assam.


National Dalit and Adivasi Women’s Congress - Programme Schedule

Organized by
Centre for Social Justice and Governance, TISS, Mumbai
Insight Foundation, Delhi
Dalit & Tribal Social Work International Collective
Library Conference Hall, TISS, Mumbai
15th -16th February, 2013

dacw 1


Why EFLU has gone back on Delivering Social Justice?


[Via Shanker Sampangi]

Caste signifies social deprivation in the society and disability signifies physical and psychological deprivation. The condition of disability is prone to double oppression in the case of socially deprived sections including women. The layers of oppression need to be seriously understood and enough care should be taken to provide appropriate provisions of justice to relive the oppressed from the clutches of castiest culture. Justice is not to provide equal opportunities to all the Disabled in an unequal and hegemonic society but to provide appropriate provisions to raise the ability of every individual to do the same job with an aim of achieving equality at large. In this regard, EFLU seems to be purposefully creating hurdles to the marginalized Disabled sections of people under the disabled quota.

In the advertisement of Teaching and Non Teaching Posts, EFLU (The English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad) reserved the disability positions following the reservation criteria for SC, ST and OBC within the Disability category in both the 2009 and 2012 (30th Dec, The Hindu) notifications. But the administration has gone back on implementing the reservation within the Disability Category by issuing a corrigendum. This is a grave injustice to the disability candidates from the socially deprived communities. It is impossible for Disabled aspirants belonging to Dalit Bahujan and Tribal backgrounds to compete with the Disability aspirants from the upper castes. The Disabled Students from the upper castes are generally from the elite class who has privileges like access to corporate education, technical aids, training etc; while the Dalit Bahujan and Tribal students do not have access to even basic education and other support. Therefore there exists a huge gap between the marginalized disabled students and the upper caste disability students.


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