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National People’s Tribunal on Atrocities Against Dalits

by admin last modified 2015-02-09 16:08

The National People’s Tribunal on Atrocities against Dalits organised by the National Dalit Movement for Justice – National Campaign for Dalit Human Rights on 10 December was aimed at building a concerted discourse on caste-based violence. Jury members included human rights activist Henri Thipagne, former bureaucrat PS Krishnan and prominent woman activist Dr Fatima Burnad. Almost two months after the gruesome murders of a family at Avkhed Khalsa village in Pathardi taluka of Ahmednagar district on 21 October, the accused have still not been arrested. Jury members said that a special investigation team should be formed, which is not from the area or the community, to properly investigate into the case and the area should be declared atrocity prone. From murders to rape! A public sewer dispute led to the torture and rape of a Dalit woman Mamta who tried to open the sewer running along the dominant caste Jat neighbourhood of her village Kahanor in Haryana.

The perpetrators tortured her, kicked her private parts, broke her feet and upon her becoming unconscious, they gang-raped her. They even tried to prevent the treatment of Mamta and her husband, who, too was beaten up. Finally, the intervention of the media and the Women’s Commission allowed them to be admitted to a hospital and treated. “We are shocked at this continuing spate of violence on Dalits, especially on Dalit Women. It is further shocking that proper access to the entire Criminal Justice Administration System is barred to the Dalits in most of the cases.”

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