Skip to main content

Under Modi's Gujarat, 85 social boycott, force migration incidents involving Dalits took place; total 112 since 1989

Macwan introducing "Gujarat Vikas Samachar"
By Our Representative
Out of 112 cases of social boycott and forced migration of Dalits across Gujarat over the last 28 years, ever since the anti-atrocities Act came into force in 1989, as many as 85 of them took place during a little more than 14 years when Narendra Modi was chief minister of Gujarat, from October 2001 to May 2014 (click HERE for detailed table).
This is one of the 126 stories printed in what was originally supposed to be one-time “newspaper” in Gujarati called “Gujarat Vikas Samachar”, published by well-known Dalit rights NGO Navsarjan Trust founder Martin Macwan. Encouraged by early response, he said, “We plan to bring out similar newspaper having people’s stories once a month.”
Analysing number of cases of social migration and forced migration, the story shows that in 1989-90, when Congress ruled, there was just one incident of social boycott and forced migration of Dalits. Then, for six months in 1990, when then Janata Dal (Gujarat) leader Chimanbhai Patel led a coalition government with the BJP, there was no such incident.
Thereafter, between October 1990 and 1995, when Patel merged his Janata Dal into the Congress and formed the government, followed by the chief ministership of Chhabilbhai Mehta, six incidents took place, three each in Mehsana and Bhavnagar districts.
Under the chief minister of Keshubhai Patel and then Suresh Mehta (both BJP) in 1995-96, there was no incident of social boycott or forced migration. Followed by this, for less than two years, in 1996-97, the Rashtriya Janata Party government, under the breakaway group of Shankarsinh Vaghela, came to power with Congress support. During this period, six incidents took place.
In 1998, Keshubhai Patel returned to power as BJP chief minister, and under him, till 2001, five incidents of social boycott and forced migration took place.
After Modi left to Delhi in May 2014, and Anandiben Patel became Gujarat chief minister between 2014 and 2016. Under her, as many as 10 incidents of social boycott and force migration of Dalits took place. Since August 2016, when Vijay Rupani became chief minister, five more incidents took place.
The story gives district-wise breakup of the number of such incidents – the highest being in Bhavnagar district (14), followed by Amreli and Banaskantha districts (12 each). Then, in Porbandar, Ahmedabad and Mehsana districts, seven incidents each took place.
Releasing “Gujarat Vikas Samachar”, to be distributed in thousands across Gujarat, Macwan told media, the purpose of bringing it out is to suggest how the most deprived sections society have remained unaffected by “development”, as claimed by the powers-that-be, under successive governments.
Macwan said, stories of landless workers, saltpan workers, vegetable vendors, majority of whom belong to the Dalit and other deprived sections., do not find reflected in the mainstream media. “Our effort is to bring these stories to light, and send them across Gujarat ahead of the state assembly elections, so that people can ask those who come seeking vote as to what they had done for them”, he said.
“The stories include that of a 12 year old tribal boy who got killed as he met with an accident on being forced to drive a tractor on a rich Patel’s farm. The landlord offered just Rs 5,000 as compensation. Worse, there is a board in the village which says that those who pay wages more than Rs 100 would be fined Rs 5,000”, he said.
Giving a graphic picture of where is Gujarat placed in malnutrition – “just one ahead of Chhattisgarh”, to quote from the “newspaper” – it carries stories by Niruben Chaurasia of Bhavnagar, whose survey shows that only those who give bribe are offered jobs; and by Manjula Makwana of Jasdan, who looks into how widows in five villages with a monthly pension of Rs 1000 have to make do their living.
Then, it has a story by Narendra Parmar of Patan, who gives a graphic picture of forced migratin in the district and how they were refused rehabilitation; and by Kalpesh Asuria of Banaskantha, who points toward the high malnutrition rate among young girls in the district and how Dalits were deprived during one of the worst floods which affected the district this year.

Comments

TRENDING

ISKCON UK 'clarifies' after virus infects devotees, 5 die due to big temple meet

By Rajiv Shah
The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), United Kingdom (UK), has admitted that at least 21 of its devotees were infected because of the spread of the coronavirus amongst the UK devotee community following the March 12 funeral and March 15 memorial of the Bhaktivedanta Manor temple president, in which about 1,000 people participated. Regretting that five of the devotees have passed away, the top Hindu religious in Britain body does not deny more may have been infected.

Mallika Sarabhai releases speech she was 'not allowed' to give at NID Convocation on Feb 7

Counterview Desk
The National Institute of Design (NID) in Ahmedabad, a Ministry of Commerce and Industry body, landed itself in controversy following its decision to put off its 40th convocation ceremony, where noted danseuse Mallika Sarabhai was invited as chief guest. The ceremony was scheduled to be held on February 7.

As corona virus 'travels' to rural areas, NGO begins training tribals, marginalised women

By Souparno Chatterjee*
The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared corona virus a pandemic. Originating from Wuhan in China, it has traversed the entire globe, almost, and claimed more than 16,000 lives already. That’s largely the urban population. In India, despite all the preparedness and war-like promptness to safeguard against the pandemic, several lives have been lost , and hundreds of individuals have tested positive.

Rani Laxmi Bai, Tatya Tope 'martyred' by East India Company, Scindia's forefathers

By Our Representative
In an email alert to Counterview, well-known political scientist Shamsul Islam has said that was “shameful for any political party in democratic India to keep children of Sindhias in their flock” given their role during the First War of Indian Independence (1857). In a direct commentary on Madhya Pradesh Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia moving over to BJP, Prof Islam has quote from a British gazetteer to prove his point.

COVID-19: Dalit rights bodies regret, no relief plan yet for SCs, STs, marginalized

By Our Representative
In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the National Dalit Watch-National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights, endorsed* by several other Dalit rights organizations, have insisted, the Government of India should particular care of the scheduled castes and tribes, trans folks, persons with disabilities and the women and children from these communities, while fighting against COVID-19 pandemic.

Coronavirus scare ‘pushing’ people from Northeast India into more hardship

By Rishiraj Sinha, Biswanath Sinha*
“No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background or his religion. People learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.” – Nelson Mandela
***

Gujarat govt plan to 'banish' Gandhian activist anti-democratic, unconstitutional

By Rohit Prajapati*
The current Central and Gujarat governments, and their bureaucracy, have been and are still unable to answer and address the concerns raised, with facts, figures, and constitutional provisions, regarding the terror of tourism in the name of the Statue of Unity and tourism projects surrounding it.

Gujarat construction workers walk home as Rs 2,900 crore welfare fund lies unused

By Our Representative
Situated behind the Gujarat University, some of the families of the migrant construction workers from Dahod and Panchmahals districts of Gujarat, and a few from Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, who had stayed put in make-shift shanties in Ahmedabad’s sprawling GMDC Ground, have begun a long journey, by foot, back to their home villages in the eastern tribal belt of Gujarat.

Modi, Shah 'forget': Gandhi’s first Satyagraha was against citizenship law of South Africa

By Nachiketa Desai*
Hindu fanatic Nathuram Godse assassinated Mahatma Gandhi once on January 30, 1948 but his followers raising the war cry of ‘Jai Sriram’ are killing the Mahatma every day. In his home state of Gujarat, Gandhiji was killed a thousand times in 2002 when over 2,000 Muslims were butchered, their women raped, homes and shops plundered and set on fire and even unborn babies ripped out of the wombs of their mothers.