Tragedy turned her into a fighter

My first post on this blog was about a horrific murder which exposed the casteist underbelly of India. It happened exactly a year ago near my town. Sanker, a Dalit youth was hacked to death in broad daylight for daring to love and marry a girl who was born to a higher caste. The girl had severe injuries too but survived. The attack was ordered by members of the girl’s family. Severely traumatized, the girl tried to kill herself by consuming poison but was saved.

Now the happy news. The girl in question is slowly turning over a new life.

Following her attempt to take her own life, she was counseled by her in-laws, several NGOs and volunteers. “They told me dying was not the solution. I was told to live through this caste violence to prove the point that I wanted to. I decided that I will make the dreams that my husband and I had, come true,” says Kowsalya. Now, a year later, that is what she has done.

After her suicide bid, she had moved back in with Sankar’s family, where she initially started taking tuitions for children from 1st standard to the 12th standard. “I wanted to do something to remove my mind from what happened. Plus, there was nobody to teach these children from the locality English. So I decided that I should do it,” says Kowsalya. But what she thought would be a favour to the students, turned out to be of great help to her, when it came to cracking the defence ministry exams.

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Bezwada Wilson gets a very deserving award

When he was just out of school he was appalled and disgusted to see workers doing manual scavenging of human excreta from dry latrines. When he conveyed his disgust to his parents they revealed that they were also doing the same job. It was shocking for him to know that he belonged to a”thotti” (manual scavenger) family. He contemplated suicide, but somehow decided to live on.

That day in 1986 changed his life, and saw the beginning of a movement that will liberate lakhs of manual scavengers all over India. It will also result in him, Bezwada Wilson, getting the prestigious Ramon Magsaysay award for 2016.

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Dalits in Gujarat won’t take it lying down any more

Dalit Organisations have called for state wide protest shut down on Wednesday in Gujarat, India. They have decided not to take it lying down anymore.

The inhumane violence on them, clearly depicted by a video which had gone viral in which a group of upper caste Hindutva goons were seen thrashing Dalit youths mercilessly in full public view in the town of Una was perhaps the breaking point.

Image credit - NDTV

Image credit – NDTV

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Atheism, Racism and Casteism

Just happened to see a disgusting video frothing with racism by a popular atheist You Tuber. It was deservedly decimated by Martin Hughes and P Z Myers wrote a post about it too (of course that’s how I came to know about the video).

While watching that video, I had a déjà vu feeling.  So I tried substituting in parts of the transcript the word Dalit for black.

The video is in the format of a group of blacks questioning the You tuber.

Admit it, you hate blacksDalits !

If I hate anything about Black Dalit culture, it’s that it’s such a victim culture. Almost a victim cult — “Our Lady of Perpetual Victimization.” Every unfairness that exists in your life is the fault of white upper caste people or society stacked against you. You might as well tattoo, “It’s because I’m black Dalit, isn’t it?” to your fucking forehead.

When asked about pushing out blacksDalits out of slums to make city beautiful

What would I rather have — a slum Ambedkar colony filled with thugs who would probably shoot rob me as soon as look at me, or shops, cafe’s, restaurants, and apartments?

“What are you going to do about systematic racism casteism ?”

[Racism Casteism against black Dalit people] is not my problem in the first place. What are [the people in the video I’m responding to (Dalits)] going to do to end discrimination against atheists? Right, you ain’t gonna do shit, because it’s not your problem and you don’t give a shit

Yes, I have heard these sentiments from some upper caste “Hindu atheists” in India. Have also heard somewhat similar things from some ex Christians and ex Muslims too.  I also know atheists who believe Dalits and black Africans are less “brainy” and it is due to their “genes”.

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Yes, atheists can be racist and casteist too, and when they are like that,  they are much more toxic.