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PUCL September, 2004

Dalit Study Circle
MD-45 Veer Savarkar Nagar, Hirapur Colony, Tatiband, Raipur , Chhattisgarh India

Tel: +91-98933-57911
E-mail: dalitstudycircle@yahoo.com
dalitstudycircle@rediffmail.com

 

 

To,

Subject: Appeal to the Honorable Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh to take appropriate action against violence and atrocities committed to large number of Dalits in Gumka village in Balod block of Durg district in Chhattisgarh.

Through media, concerned friends and Dalit organizations working in Chhattisgarh we came to know that sizeable number of Dalits, both men and women, were gang attacked by upper caste people in Gumka village within Balod block of Durg district in Chhattisgarh.

We view with grave concern that:

  1. Even after 57 years of independence and despite the fact that untouchability was abolished officially by the State of India, untouchability and casteism is still vibrant in India as it was earlier and it is today taking new forms of social oppression, political exploitation, economical deprivation and cultural domination.
  2. With the change of time, untouchability and casteism has taken new incarnations and manifestations. This has created new tensions not between Dalits and non-Dalits particularly in rural areas. Gumka village is the latest target in this regard.
  3. The tension in Gumka village of relatively character where a process to dominate the community socially, politically and culturally is obvious. Dalits were attacked by non-Dalits to the worst wounding more than 150 people.
  4. Women were also targeted in the attack and it is a serious matter demanding immediate action. Making them naked and subjecting to molestation and insulting the modesty is a gross violation to human rights.
  5. The police and administration have not responded positively to bring the culprits under law. It appears that they are trying to bypass the arrest of the real culprits.
  6. Attack on people based on discriminative social system is an infringement of international norms of human rights. Any sort of violence on people based on caste, race, gender, class, colour and creed is breach of human rights.

 

We feel that this too is such a case of human rights violation. We appeal to the commission to immediately investigate the whole matter in detail. Under the above mentioned circumstances we demand for an impartial investigation into the whole incident of Gumka.

We demand:

•  To instruct the police to take essential steps to reframe the case in a proper manner mentioning all appropriate sections and clauses in this matter so that justice is done to the Dalits and no one again dares to do the same in future.

•  To immediately arrest all the culprits in this case who had committed the heinous crime not only against Dalits but also against womanhood and motherhood.

•  All forces with the intention of political gain and drawing political mileage should be kept away from the investigation process. However the Dalit organisations engaged in this process should be involved in this case in view of holding a fair and just investigation.

•  That proper direction should be given to the state to ensure the safety and security of Dalits living under utter terror and fear.

•  That the state government should also be directed to take precautionary measure of preventing such atrocious incidences on Dalits and Dalit women in particular in future.

•  That the victims should be properly compensated so that they re-start their lives anew with afresh sense of freedom and liberty. In reality no compensation could fill their psychological and cerebral wound that is still grey and fresh, but efforts should be made to ensure their space and dignity.

•  That all efforts to cause indignity and insult Dalits through means and deeds should be outlawed completely and legal action should be taken strictly against those who practice such things.

•  That usage of derogatory language should be banned and considered to be a heinous crime by all sections of law.

 

Looking forward that the commission will be able to do justice to Dalits and bring the culprits under seize.

 

 

 

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