People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


Vol. XXXV

No. 16

April  17, 2011

ANDHRA PRADESH

 

Broader Movement for

Dalit Rights in Offing

 

B V Raghavulu, AP state vice-president, KVPS (Organisation for Struggle Against Caste Discrimination) warned that, if the state government did not keep its promises given to the SCs and STs, a still more  broad based movement would be launched. The 76 day long cycle rally organised by the KVPS and Agricultural Workers Union consisting of a 30 member team led by Tammineni Veerabhadram, honorary president,  KVPS,  Khammam District, came to a conclusion at Khammam town on April 5. Speaking  at a public rally organised on this occasion, B V Raghavulu, Polit Bureau member and secretary of the CPI(M) AP unit, said the ruling classes that want to see India in the company of USA should also ensure that, the SCs and STs also advance forward. Most of  those who are working as laborers at the construction sites of the dams, agriculture  and all other areas of work that are labour intensive are SCs, he reminded. And, with out ensuring the betterment in their lives, they cannot become whole hearted participants in the economic growth.  All those who look down upon the SCís should realise this, Raghavulu added.  No worker would want to further improve the profits of the owner, who is discriminating them. If the government did not implement its promises with regard to the SCs and STs, we would organise a broad based movement in the future for the resolution of those issues, he emphasised. And, we would achieve much broader unity. We are not seeking any bodyís mercy in the provision of the funds for this. We demand for a due share of the funds, for the development of the SCs and STs, he reiterated. Raghavulu condemned the apathy of the government in providing the funds to the nodal agency and as well as the non appointment of the chairman of the SC and ST commission. He condemned the attitude of some of the political parties which are looking towards Delhi and watching whether the state will remain united or else be divided. He asked them to shift the gaze towards the difficulties of the people of the state and thus join hands in the future struggles. The public meeting was preceded by a huge rally with thousands of people. The dalits who turned up for the rally in a huge way, marched on the streets of Khammam. Slogans demanding the resolution of their problems reverberated all along the way.

 

Professor Satyanarayana of Osmania Universityís Centre for Dalit studies, who spoke at the public meeting, criticised the ruling classes for the mischief they were playing with the dalits since the last six decades. He warned that the dalits are not prepared anymore to be deceived further. The dalit awakening is on the rise, thus their resistance would follow up correspondingly, he added. The welfare programs being implemented by the government are not a charity, but are paid from the taxes being paid by the people themselves, he reiterated. The constitutional protection which is an inherent right of every human being is being denied to the dalits and thus it should be won back by the struggles, he called upon. There should be a fair share for the dalits in the national wealth, he demanded.Dalits should understand who is raising voice on behalf of them and as well standing by them, he exhorted. The Congress party which has ruled the country longest of all, deceived the dalits most, he explained. The diversion of the funds meant for the dalits led to their wretched condition and thus meted out severe injustice to them, Satyanarayana condemned. There is only economic discrimination in the other countries, where as here in our country, there is social discrimination as well. And a struggle is required against this aspect too, he told. Unless the dalits become conscious of their fate, their plight would remain the same, he insisted.

 

"Rupees 612 crores would be sufficient for solving the problems of all the dalit slums identified by the cycle rally in the Khammam district, but is the government in such a situation, where in it could not allocate that amount too", asked Tammineni Veerabhadram, honorary president of the KVPS, Khammam district. He demanded the government to resolve the problems of the dalits, if it has any love for them. There is no entry for the dalits into the temples of hundreds of villages, he revealed. In this backdrop, the KVPS called upon all the social classes and political parties to organise Ram navami celebrations together at a place in all the villages on April 12. The future belongs to the struggles against the discrimination, he told. The dalits who are being discriminated against, when alive are being discriminated after death also by being denied the right to be buried in the graveyards, he criticised. The district collector of Khammam himself has accepted that the GO meant for allocating graveyard for the dalits is not being implemented. A land issue pertaining to the dalit land tillers in 24,000 acres has come to the notice of KVPS during the cycle rally. This issue was left unresolved, despite the possibility for resolving it, even without spending a single rupee for doing so. United struggles are needed for a solution to this issue, he said. Already, some sections like the Telengana Rashtra Samithi are extending their solidarity for the cause, Tammineni said.

 

John Wesley, AP state general secretary of KVPS who spoke at the public meeting said that dalits are not going to tolerate the discrimination any longer. The cycle rally for the dalit cause held in the Khammam district would be extended state wide, he said. This rally had taught the dalits the need to question the discriminatory practices, he commented. It had also united the dalits of the district, who are divided in the other districts of the state on various issues. The onus for the consequences of the dalit resistance rests squarely on the government Wesley warned. The dalits belonging to the very village of the state DGP Aravinda Rao are not being allowed into the temples, he lamented. Wesley concluded saying that the movement for the rights of the dalits would be intensified further in the near future.

                                                                                                                                       (INN)