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Formed in 2000, the IDSN is a network of international organisations, national solidarity networks and affected country groups, campaigning against caste-based discrimination throughout the world, from the dalits of South Asia to the Osu of Nigeria and the Burakumin of Japan. Visit our website International Dalit Solidarity Network for more information. SUBMIT DALIT NEWS HERE

Friday, September 03, 2004  
Times of India
SEPTEMBER 03, 2004

Caste factor divides Bhucho KalanBALWANT GARG TIMES NEWS NETWORK

Caste divisions have started emerging in the village after the police rounded up about 200 Dalits to avert a clash between upper caste and Dalit Sena members on August 25.
The Dalit Sena members were proceeding towards the village where the dera of Baba Roomiwala is situated to protest against the 'discrimination' of Dalits at the dera since 1968. But the main reason for the caste factor coming into play was a resolution passed by the upper caste members of Bhucho Kalan panchayat last week for removal of Gura Singh, a Dalit chowkidar in the village. Gura Singh's two daughter were allegedly insulted at the dera for partaking langar with upper caste members about two months ago. This got the Dalit Sena into agitation mode. Besides organising protest rallies, they met senior SGPC office-bearers, asking them to ensure that no caste-based practice be allowed in the dera, where the Guru Granth Sahib is installed.

Dera Baba Roomiwala has about four decade old practice of making separate arrangements for giving langar to the Dalits and upper castes. The Dalits are also not allowed to pay obeisance at Samadh of Baba Roomiwala. While four panches, five numbardar and sarpanch (all upper caste members) sought the removal of Gura Singh, three panches and one numbardar (all Dalits) in the village panchayat opposed the resolution, alleging he was being removed for raising his voice against the discriminatory practice at the dera. On Tuesday, Kiranjit Gehri, sena state president, took a delegation of 100 Dalits to New Delhi to apprise AICC president Sonia Gandhi of the 'bigoted attitude of the dera management and the state government which is supporting the practice. [... ]

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