Exclusion of creamy layer will affect Dalits' development: Ruth

Published: Sunday, November 12, 2006, 21:06 [IST]
 

New Delhi, Nov 12 (UNI) Social activist and winner of alternate Nobel prize Ruth Manorama said the recent Supreme Court's judgement of excluding creamy layer among the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes would have an adverse impact on socially oppressed section of the people.

''The entrenched social oppression suffered by Dalits for hundreds of years cannot be overcome by reservation for just five generations. They have suffered from social exclusion and marginalisation at the hands of upper castes who usurped their resources,'' Ms Manorama, a prominent activist participating in the ongoing Indian Social Forum, told UNI.

She asserted reservation have been granted to the Scheduled Castes and Tribes on the basis of social and educational backwardness and not on the basis of economic criteria so ''creamy layer concept is irrational.'' Moreover, the benefits of reservation has now started trickling down so they should not be deprived of benefits.

Ms Manorama said Dalits have suffered from atrocities for generations and their human rights have been violated which must be reddressed. Dalits in villages depend on land for livelihood, which have been taken away during all these years, should be returned back by the upper castes who have crushed these downtrodden people. Dalits must be provided violence free atmosphere and given other resources, she asserted.

Moreover, when the upper castes could benefit from eudcational and social facilities for centuries, how could Dalit come at par with them in just over 50 years, she wondered. This was especially when all the good educational institutions have come into private sector and out of the reach of Dalits.

''The government must address the poverty, deprivation and discrimination being faced by Dalits and redress their human rights violation, atrocities and inequities being suffered by them. Dalits should be provided equal opportunities and not only menial jobs and manual scavenging as is happening today,'' said Ms Manorama, who got the alternative Nobel prize for bringing the cause of Dalits, who suffer from social discrimination and oppression, to the forefront.

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