. . . . . . "Dalit Solidarity News" is an information project run by the International Dalit Solidarity Network. News stories are extracts from online newsservices. Link to the full story is found at the end of each blog. Visit the International Dalit Solidarity Network at www.idsn.org

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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, December 16, 2005  
Dalit issue must be addressed: Tutu

Times of India
December 15, 2005

BANGALORE: "Obviously one of the issues the country is facing is that of Dalits," said Archbishop Emeritus Nobel laureate Desmond Tutu here on Wednesday. He was speaking after attending a meet on 'Building peace through dialogue: Reconciling differences', organised by the Singamma Sreenivasan Foundation and Indian Council for Cultural Relations. "An alliance of all the groups working for Dalits must focus their efforts on removing the scurf. You don't need to wait for the government participation."

Tutu shared his experiences with a host of dignitaries including police commissioner Ajai Kumar Singh, artistes S G Vasudev, Ammu Joseph, V Balu and Suma Sudhendra: "In this world, some believe that might is right. But eventually it is not those who call the shots. An eye for an eye will make the world blind."

"South Africa is grateful to India for supporting their struggle in fighting apartheid," he said. On Mahatma Gandhi, he said Mahatma's beliefs are quoted even today as gems and pearls in speeches.

Governor T N Chaturvedi said "peace exists till there is dignity of man, when that is violated conflicts arise". ICCR director general Pawan Varma was present.

Link to the article

9:30 AM

Wednesday, December 14, 2005  
Tension in Orissa village after Dalits enter temple Kendrapada

13 December 2005

Tension prevailed at a village here Tuesday after four socially under-privileged Dalit women were beaten up by upper cast villagers Sunday for entering into the village temple.
The four women - belonging to Hadi (scavenger), Kandara and Gokha communities - entered the temple at Keraragarh village in the coastal district of Kendrapada Sunday, violating an age-old ban on their entry imposed by the upper cast.

The temple priest and villagers had beaten up the four women after they entered the temple and worshipped the deity.

"They not only assaulted us, they also demanded Rs.1,000 from us to purify the temple. The priests used filthy languages against us," alleged Jharana Jena, one of the four women.
Tension mounted in the village when the Dalits decided in a meeting to enter the temple after submitting a memorandum to the district collector on Monday.

"We have requested the district collector to take action against the priest and the upper caste villagers involved in beating up the women," a village dalit told IANS.
"We are going to enter into the temple violating the ban," he asserted.

The district collector, Jyotiprakash Das, who rushed to the village to take stock of the situation, said action would be taken against those found guilty.

Link to the article

8:44 AM

Tuesday, December 13, 2005  
Parliament passes disaster management Bill

Press Information Bureau - Government of India
12 December 2005

The Disaster Management Bill, 2005, which was passed by the Rajya Sabha on 28th November, 2005, was considered and passed by the Lok Sabha today. The Government decided to enact a central legislation on disaster management in the aftermath of the tsunami disaster on 26th December, 2004. The Bill was introduced in the Rajya Sabha on 11th May, 2005 when it was referred to the Parliamentary Standing Committee for examination and report. The Committee presented its report on 25th August, 2005. The necessary amendments in the Bill were proposed by the Government which were considered by the Rajya Sabha and the Bill was passed with the amendments on 28th November, 2005 and thereafter by the Lok Sabha today.
The Bill will now be sent to the President for assent before it becomes a law.

The salient features of the Bill include setting up of a National Disaster Management Authority under the Chairmanship of the Prime Minister; State Disaster Management Authorities in the States/Union Territories under the chairmanship of Chief Minister or Lt. Governor or Administrator, as the case may be; and the District Disaster Management Authority under the District Magistrate in each district.

The National and State Authorities shall be responsible for laying down the policies, plans and guidelines for disaster management. The District Authority shall act as the district planning, coordination and implementing body for all disaster management related functions. These functions will include mitigation and preparedness measures also, besides response, relief and rehabilitation.

A key role has been assigned to the local authority for ensuring training of its officers and employees; maintenance of resources so that these are readily available for use in the event of a disaster and ensuring that all construction projects in their area of jurisdiction conform to the prescribed standards and specifications. The local authority shall also carry out relief, rehabilitation and re-construction activities in the affected areas.


The Bill seeks to constitute Disaster Response Fund and Disaster Mitigation Fund at the National, State and District level. It mandates that there shall be no discrimination on the ground of sex, caste, community, descent or religion while providing compensation and relief to the victims. The powers to issue directions to the Government authorities, organizations and statutory bodies to facilitate and assist in disaster management have been vested in the Central Government. The Bill seeks to make provision for punishment for obstructing response, making false claims, mis-appropriation of money or materials and issue of false warning. However, it provides immunity to Government organizations and officers for action taken in good faith.


Keeping in view the federal polity, the Bill has been enacted under the Entry ‘Social Security and Social Insurance’ in the Concurrent List of the Constitution of India since it will have the advantage to allow the State Governments also to have their own legislation.

Read the full article

1:31 PM

Monday, December 12, 2005  
Maoists abduct over 100 in Taplejung

11 December 2005

The Maoists abducted more than one hundred Dalit civilians from the eastern part of Taplejung district Thursday afternoon, a newspaper report on Sunday said.
Maoists abducted the locals of Mhale, Saplakhu, Kalikhola and Mamankhe VDCs, the state run The Rising Nepal quoted a resident of Saplakhu VDC-3, who came to the district headquarters as saying.

The armed Maoists took the civilians towards Tharpu area of Panchthar district after gathering them in the premises of Bhanjyang Higher Secondary of Saplakhu VDC saying that there is a district level programme related to the Dalit community, according to the local citizen.

A group of 25-armed Maoists had visited individual homes and asked civilians in all age groups – from youths to the elderly to follow them. The Maoists have said that they would release the captives after a week, the local said.

Officials are yet to confirm the report.

Link to the article

9:03 AM

Dalit ‘pays’ hand price

The Telegraph
11 December 2005

Bhopal, Dec. 10: A 32-year-old Dalit had her hand chopped off in a village near here for refusing to take back her complaints of rape against two upper-caste men.

Madhya Pradesh, which tops the list of crimes against women according to a national crime bureau report, was witness to another incident of brutality earlier this year, when Shakuntala, a supervisor in the women and child welfare department, lost both her arms for trying to prevent child marriage.

A gang of five armed men yesterday barged into Kamlabai’s hut in Ningri village in Raisen district, about 120 km from the state capital, superintendent of police J.S. Sanswal said. They thrashed her family members and set her home on fire before hacking Kamlabai’s right hand with an axe, he added.

In her statement to Bhopal police, Kamlabai said her husband Prakash fled when the attackers came and started beating up everyone mercilessly. “I was left alone in the courtyard. They tied my hands and feet and then chopped off my hand with an axe.”

She has been admitted to the state-run Hamidiya hospital and her condition is serious.
Kamlabai, who was allegedly raped three years ago, said the five assailants had been threatening her with dire consequences if she did not withdraw two rape complaints against Manmod Mehra and Siyaram Raghuvanshi.

The police had registered the cases but no arrests were made and her repeated requests for a medical examination went unheard, she said.

The National Commission for Women (NCW) has taken suo motu cognisance of the case and sought a report from the state police.

NCW chairperson Girija Vyas said in Delhi that the commission would send a team to the state to investigate the incident. She said she had spoken to state police officials, asking them to provide adequate security to Kamlabai and her family.

The commission has also demanded that an FIR be immediately registered and Kamlabai’s statement recorded by a magistrate, the NCW chairperson said.


Link to the article

8:58 AM

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