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Hathras a 'blatant case' of upper caste power, patriarchy, socially sanctioned violence

Upper caste solidarity following Hathras gangrape 
By Our Representative
Thousands of people from all walks of life -- teachers, activists, journalists, homemakers, corporate executives, artists, writers, poets, teachers, students, retired private and public officials, students, faculty, IT professionals and others from across the world -- have regretted that the Hathras gangrape suggests, caste solidarity remains one of the “ugliest and strongest kinship performances of the modern Indian state.”
Signatories include prominent persons such as Dr Syeda Hamid, Aruna Roy, Maimoona Mollah, Annie Raja, Anjali Bharadwaj, Kavita Krishnan, Indira Jaising, Shalini Gera, Aparna Sen and Vani Subramanian, apart representatives from hundreds of civil society organizations.
Referring to the manner in which upper caste people have come together to save the culprits, in a statement, they have said, the incident suggests “growing support base for Thakurs”, adding, the fact that no official visited the girl’s family even once after her death tells us suggests nobody from the power structure under UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath cares.
The signatories, who include individuals and civil society organizations from India, US, UK, Canada, Australia, UAE, Hong Kong, Japan, Nepal, Netherlands, Sweden, and Slovenia, say in a statement, “Despite a continuing saga of countless other cases of brutal sexual assault and murders, especially of young Dalit women, the conscience of this nation does not seem to be shaken enough to do anything serious to stop the targeting...”
The statement says, “While there is a historicity to these incidents, but under CM Yogi’s rule, Uttar Pradesh has only gone from bad to worse. Crimes against women and Dalits have increased, and police have been given unlimited powers without any accountability.”
“Even as the tragic news of the death of the victim from Hathras was coming in, more cases of sexual violence on Dalit women have come up from Balrampur, Bulandshahar, Azamgarh, all in UP”, the statement says, warning, the way the state has been acting “will only further strengthen those who continue to commit such crimes.”
Calling the Hathras “a blatant case of upper caste power and patriarchy operating through both socially sanctioned violence and through state agencies”, the statement demands “a proper course of justice, fair investigation, holding the guilty persons and police and other state officials responsible”, especially those “who manhandled the case, exposed the identity of the victim and wilfully destroyed crucial forensic evidence.”

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