Skip to main content

Extend quota to Dalit Muslims, Christians, delete 1950 "religious ban": NCDHR report seeks UN intervention

By Rajiv Shah
National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights (NCDHR), the apex body of India’s Dalit rights organizations, has in a report submitted to the United Nations (UN) insisted that the country’s reservation measures “must be extended to Dalits of all faiths, especially to Dalit Christians and Muslims.”
Pointing out that Dalit Christians and Muslims are “presently excluded from the reservation benefits owing to religion-based discrimination”, NCDHR report insists, “The Constitution Scheduled Castes Order 1950, Paragraph 3's religious ban ought to be removed/deleted or amended by Union of India for the extension of Scheduled Castes privileges to Christians and Muslims of Scheduled Castes origin.”
Prepared following consultations with 563 Dalit rights bodies across India with the help of the All-India Dalit Mahila Adhikar Manch, Dalit Ardhik Adhikar Andolan, the National Dalit Movement for Justice, and the National Dalit Watch, the NCDHR report, titled “Joint Stakeholders’ Report on Caste-based Discrimination in India” has been submitted for discussion at the 27th Session of the Universal Periodic Review of the UN Human Rights Council – India, scheduled in May 2017.
A year ago, a US State Department report on the human rights situation in India had said that though “some Christians and Muslims were identified as Dalits”, the Government of India had preferred to limit “reservations for Dalits to Hindus, Sikhs, and Jains.”
The US report had come had come following a report submitted in 2014-end to the Narendra Modi government by a high-level committee headed by well-known academic Amitabh Kundu, which insisted that “the Dalit Muslims must be taken out of the other backward classes (OBC) list and incorporated in the scheduled caste list.”
“It should be possible to identify these Muslim caste groups based on the principle recommended by the Ranganath Misra Commission, that all groups and classes whose counterparts among the Hindus, Sikhs or Buddhists, are included in the Central or state SCs lists should be brought under the SC net”, the Kundu report had underlined.
Wanting reservation to be extended to the private sector as well, the NCDHR report tells the UN, “There is no umbrella anti-discrimination employment statute to regulate the private sector in India”, demanding, that the existing affirmative policies related to employment should be “extended to private sector, with a special emphasis in those private spheres so far left out of the ambit of reservation policy.”
According to NCDHR, “There is a lack of a comprehensive employment anti-discrimination framework that adequately addresses the myriad ways in which discrimination operates. The existing legal protections against such discrimination include constitutional provisions mandating equality and a handful of criminal statutes.”
However, it admits, “India’s elaborate quota system has had some measurable impact upon employment of Dalit communities in civil servant positions. While in 1965, Dalits held just 1.6% of senior civil servant positions, this number rose to 11.5% since 2011—far closer to the 16% or so of India’s general population represented by Dalit communities.”
Despite these successes in the reservation policy, it says, “There were 25,037 'backlog' posts for SCs lying vacant in 73 government departments and bodies”, adding, “These are positions reserved for SC members that have not been filled over the years and thus have accumulated. They include both direct recruitment and promotion-based positions. Out of these, 4,518 positions were vacant because no candidate was available for promotion.”

Comments

ALSO READ

India failing to dictate diplomatic preferences of Nepal, Bhutan, is unfairly blaming Beijing: Chinese daily

By Our Representative
In a sharply-worded editorial, a top Chinese media outfit, described by BBC as state-run, has said, commenting on India's foreign relations with its neighbours, that "speculation and suspicion" is "certainly not diplomacy". Published in "China Daily", the largest circulating English Monday-to-Saturday newspaper with branches across the world, the editorial notes (September 20) that "several recent events" in Nepal and Bhutan, are "gnawing worrywarts in New Delhi".
The editorial -- which comes close on the heels of a sharp critique of India's foreign policy in a state-supported Russian media outfit, Sputnik International, calling India's anti-Pak diplomacy as having "gone awry" following Prime Minister Narendra Modi's "half-baked" push for anti-terror drill down "others' throat" -- says, the " worrywarts" include "Nepalese troops taking part in a joint…

Accused of being RSS plant, Modi man, Hyderabad Urdu varsity chancellor asks President to probe "irregularities"

Counterview Desk
Refused entry in the Maulana Azad National Urdu University (MANUU), the central university's newly appointed chancellor Firoz Bakht Ahmed, who claims to be grand nephew of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, has, in a letter to the President of India, said that MANUU vice-chancellor (V-C) Dr Aslam Parvaiz has accused him of being an RSS plant and a Modi man, whose sole aim is to "interfere in the working of the university".

Ahmedabad, GIFT, Adani city get 1.68 lakh acre ft Narmada water; Gujarat's rural areas just 4.27 AF: Letter to CM

Counterview Desk
Well-known farmer rights leader Sagar Rabari, in an open letter to Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani, has demanded a transparent account of Narmada water, saying, while he has received a "routine reply" from him to his earlier, the data emerging from his RTI application show huge quantity of water being directed to Ahmedabad, the 10 km stretch of Sabarmati for the Ahmedabad riverfront, and nearby elite urban areas, including the Adanis' Shantigram township and GIFT City.

17 lakh Jharkhand elderly, widows, differently abled do not receive pension: Public hearing told, aadhaar is a hurdle

By Our Representative
Hundreds of elderly, widows, single women and differently-abled persons from different districts of Jharkhand gathered near the Raj Bhavan in Ranchi for a public hearing organized by the Jharkhand Right to Food Campaign and Pension Parishad demanding the right to universal social security pensions ahead of World Elderly Day on October 1.

Ethnocide in Caribbean island filmed following award winning docufilm on Jamaica's anti-colonial Indian roots

International awards winner for Best Feature Documentary Linda Aïnouche for “Dreadlocks Story” (2014), which shows how Indians are entangled in the Jamaican society, and how Hinduism was a source of inspiration for the Rastafari movement, is all set to release her new documentary, “Marooned in the Caribbean”, which aims at documenting the awful desolating living conditions that Raizal people, the native inhabitants of San Andres Archipelago, endure.
Sons of slaves, these islanders have fallen prey to what the Colombian government calls Colombianization. “It’s a process”, according to her, “which kills the Raizal culture; it’s the killing of the Raizal soul. Colombianization subjugates Afro-descendants of San Andres to an ethnocide.”

Explorer, director and producer, Linda Aïnouche writes exclusively for Counterview: ***
Nobody escapes from blood and thunder in Colombia, and definitely not in the archipelago of San Andres, situated closer to Managua and Kingston than Bogota. The Raizal p…

India to deport Rohingya refugees, as the world moves towards prosecuting Myanmar for genocide

By Tapan Bose*
Seven Rohingya Muslims refugees who were held at a detention centre in Assam since 2012 will be handed over to Myanmar. The Supreme Court of India has refused to stop their deportation. The new Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gagoi said, "We are not inclined to interfere on the decision taken".

An elite Kutir set up by Modi far from the "madding" crowd: This Gandhi museum is formal, unapproachable

By Rajiv Shah
Have you ever heard of a Gandhi museum, sough to be projected as the “largest” on the Mahatma, yet totally inaccessible, in sharp contrast to Ahmedabad’s humble, approachable and unassuming Gandhi Ashram on the banks of Sabarmati, set up by the Mahatma during the heydays of the freedom movement? It exists about 30 kilometres away, its idea was conceived by none other than a person who has today become even more inaccessible than he ever was: Narendra Modi, India's Prime Minister.

History less known: Kasturba's role as an independent woman and a freedom fighter in her own right

By Nandini Oza*
Even the most deserving of women do not find a place that equals their worth in history. Kasturba is one such woman whose contribution to India’s struggle for freedom has been exemplary, and yet, it has not received the recognition it deserves. Kastur Makhanji Kapadia was born in the year 1869, the same year and in the same town of Porbandar in Gujarat as Gandhiji. In fact she was older than Gandhiji by a few months.

Hyderabad-based Urdu university "bars" entry of its new chancellor, who had "initiated" reforms in institute

Counterview Desk
In an unusual controversy, Aslam Parvaiz, vice-chancellor of of the Hyderabad-based Maulana Azad National Urdu University (MANUU) has restricted the entry of its newly appointed Chancellor, Firoz Bakht Ahmed, allegedly because he was trying to initiate reforms, including setting up of a Maulana Azad Center for Composite Culture and Progressive Studies, Model Madrasa, Center for Empowerment of Muslim Women, Course for the Development of Legal Vocabulary and Legal Consciousness in Urdu, and so on.

Poor response to tenders for Gujarat's bid for the world's tallest statue, no international firm shows interest

By Our Representative
The Gujarat government’s claim that its decision to build the world’s highest statue in the world, in the memory of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, would attract “tremendous” response top international construction companies, has gone phut. The state government floated international tenders in August to build the statue, which is slated to be 182-metres high. Despite the “international” character of the tenders and big claims, well-informed Sachivalaya sources close to Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi say, “not one international firm has come up to offer to carry out the construction activity.”