State Sanctioned Atrocities Against Dalits Under Modi Raj

Date:

People shout slogans against rising attacks on Dalits or low caste people in Mumbai. Reuters
People shout slogans against rising attacks on Dalits or low caste people in Mumbai. Reuters

The manner in which the cow protection vigilante groups across India have been targeting the minorities and Dalits, was enough for Modi to tighten the screw and show these elements their right place. But instead of taking action or putting a break on their activities, he has been providing them his with his maunswikriti (silent approval)

ARUN SRIVASTAVA

[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he CPI(M) polit bureau member Brinda Karat was narrating the half truth when she said that the public thrashing of Dalits in Gujarat has the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “support to criminal activities” of cow protection committees. True enough, this was more than a criminal activity; it was in the chain of the organized violence by the Hindutva forces.

The manner in which the cow protection vigilante groups across India have been targeting the minorities and Dalits, was enough for Modi to tighten the screw and show these elements their right place. But instead of taking action or putting a break on their activities, he has been providing them his with his maunswikriti (silent approval).

Just a day ahead conceding “there is hooliganism going on in the name of self-proclaimed gaurakshasamitis” and “we need to be more vigilant”, the Gujarat Chief Secretary GR Aloria said that the men who flogged a Dalit family in Una videotaped the July 11 incident simply “for fun”. According to him the victim belonged to Shiv Sena, a constituent of the saffron brigade. Aloria’s statement makes it explicit that it was not a simple crime but more than that.

Modi has been performing in the true spirit of the script handed over by the RSS. Interestingly, while the Sangh and Modi have been have been trying to usurp the legacy of Babasaheb Ambedkar, they have unleashed the cow protection forces to perpetrate torture and violence on the Dalits and minorities.

Their strategy has been to isolate Ambedkar. Look at his statement; sometimes, we insult Babsaheb Ambedkar by limiting him to his work for Dalits. But he worked for all oppressed people. We see Ambedkar the same way the world sees Martin Luther King,” Apparently, it may appear to be a generous and more devoted tribute to the great emancipator, but in real sense this a calculated by Modi to delink Ambedkar from Dalit aspiration.

Sangh has its one point programme; Dalits accept and merge with Hindutva ideals or perish. The Sangh academics and intellectuals cite 38,000 odd violent actions against the Dalits during the Congress Raj. But the fact is the upper caste elements that have been basically support base of the Sangh have been behind all the criminal actions. They have been operating through various private armies, like Brahamarshi Sena and Ranvir Sena.

Modi has been feeding distorted information about Ambedkar and his contribution to empower Dalits: “Thus, if I limit Ambedkar’s contribution to Dalits, what will happen to 50 percent of the population in India?” Modi also said that Ambedkar never had any bitterness towards some sections of the society for the injustice he had to face. “It is natural to seek revenge for any wrongdoing. But Ambedkar never had any bitterness in his words for the injustice against him,” he said.

Modi’s bhakti is understandable, but Ambedkar disliked bhakts, particularly in political life. At a meeting in Bombay in March 1933, Ambedkar was annoyed that superlatives were used for him. He reprimanded the organisers saying, “These ideas of hero worship will bring ruin on you if you don’t nip them in the bud.”

A closer look at the all the incidents of violence against Dalits would unravel that they were resorted to coerce and terrorise them and evict them from the small piece of land they possess. Even Aloria revealed: “The victims have made a few allegations against the local sarpanch of Mota Samadhiyala. The victims are saying that the sarpanch was objecting to construction activity by the family on land allotted for a common water well, that he called these hooligans to the village under the excuse of gauraksha to beat them up.”

The Gujarat based Dalit human rights organization, Navsarjan Trust, have alleged that rampant discrimination against the Scheduled Caste community and the impunity for atrocities on them has been going on in Gujarat. The public flogging of four Dalit men by vigilantes in Una for skinning a dead cow has sparked nation-wide outrage. But this is not the first time an incident of this nature is happening in the State.

It said; “Gujarat has a mere 2.33 per cent of India’s Dalit population, but when it comes to atrocities, it ranks in the top half of the country.” A study report on untouchability in Modi’s Gujarat by Navsarjan found that in 90 per cent of temples in Gujarat, Dalits were not allowed an entry. In 54 per cent of government schools, Dalit children were made to sit separately.

The National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) reports a 44 per cent increase in violence against Dalits, up from 32,712 in 2010 to 47,064 crimes in 2014. The heinous nature of these crimes is beyond imagination – a Dalit women was brutally raped and murdered in Kerala in April, another was raped and murdered, and dumped in a water tank in Rajasthan in March, two children were burnt to death in Faridabad in 2015 and two girls were raped, murdered and hung up on a tree in Badaun in 2014.

The violence against Dalits follows a defined pattern. They are perpetrated to make Dalits realize their status in the caste-based social structure. They can achieve emancipation only if they join Hindutva bandwagon. It is unfortunate that Sangh and the ‘dominant civil society’ strive to decide the fate of the Dalit community through its caste sanctions. The larger civil society is averse to intervene when Dalits are murdered in broad daylight, publicly beaten, paraded naked and raped.

Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Bihar lead the country in the number of cases registered of crimes against the Scheduled Castes, official data pertaining to 2013, 2014 and 2015 show. Fifty-two to 65 per cent of all crimes in Rajasthan have a Dalit as the victim. This is despite the fact that the State’s SC (Dalit) population is just 17.8 per cent of its total population. “The sudden increase in crime against Dalit in Gujarat are abnormal and are being highlighted so that these States can provide actual data in case there was a mistake in reporting,” said the agenda note for the NCSC review meeting with the States. Gujarat’s numbers of crimes against Dalits had jumped to 6655 in 2015 from 1130 in 2014. The crimes against Dalits were 163 per cent of the total number of crimes reported.

Though atrocity against the Dalits is perennial the July 11 incident in Gujarat adds some new dimensions to it. First, the cow vigilantes forced a Muslim boy to thrash the Dalits to prove that Muslims are anti-beef. Second, generally atrocities used to be related to economic issues and untouchability. But this time, the central issue was a willy-nilly resistance of the Dalits to follow the neo-Brahminical nationalist cultural practices conceived by Hindutva champions. Third, for the first time in Gujarat, as many as 20 young Dalits attempted suicide to express their anger and get justice. —IPA Service

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Share post:

Subscribe

spot_imgspot_img

Popular

More like this
Related

Valiant Tulu Queen Who United Hindus, Muslims Against the Portuguese

BENGALURU - Rani Abbakka, the great Tulu queen regarded as...

UP Cop Complains about Poor Food Quality, Video Goes Viral

FIROZABAD - A video clip of a police constable protesting...

Modi-Shehbaz Sharif Meeting Likely During SCO Summit: Report

ISLAMABAD - Narendra Modi and Shehbaz Sharif, the Prime Ministers...

No Chair for Many Dalit Panchayat Presidents in TN: Shocking Survey Report

While speaking to media persons after releasing the report...