Women Folk School on neo-dalit campaign against politics of division,exploitation and hatred with an alternative of unity of broken masses on base of reconciliation, democracy, secularism and non violence
Neodalit campaign that inculcated from synergetic culture of Varanasi reached from the villages of Varanasi to the other side of the world in Peru to observe March 21 as the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. People lit up candle to support the campaign. At first candle was lighted by Deewai Rodriguez of Philippines and Elias Schmidt of Germany. Among the supporters of the Neodalits were working president of the World Buddha Association Rajbodh Kaul, dalit politician Uditraj, tribal leader Dayamani Barla, photographer Alessio Mammo, freelance filmmaker Joy Guha along with the people from the different communities.Marian Dass an NRI living in London has said we will observe in London. Congratulations for the launch of Neo Dalits movement. How secular & inclusive & a common platform for our people scattered and shattered in various faiths or no faith, various languages, regions etc.
700 people in 5 different blocks of Varanasi, at 70 places across India and in ten other countries people came out to support the neodalit campaign by participating in the programme.
In this context the PVCHR and Savitri Bai Phule Mahila Panchayat organized a debate on Neo-dalit campaign in context of gender perspective at the Pararkar Bhavan of Varanasi district on March 22. During the programme women folk school passed the Banaras declaration on Neo dalit Movement.
The programme started with the garlanding of the portrait of Savitri Bai Phule the first female teacher of India and lightening of the lamp by the chief guest Bindu singh and special guest Nasreen Fatima. At first in the programme poster against child marriage and sticker for violence free home and office were launched. During the programme Shirin Shabana Khan, Dr Lenin and Katyayini Singh spoke on the topics. The programme was convened by Shruti and Bindu Singh was the chief guest.
Speaking in the programme Shruti said that the society has been following the caste based and patriarchal system and even today it runs on the derivative of the same in shape of injustice or delayed justice (impunity). There are marginalized people in the villages who are victim of silence. These erroneous customs have been utilized by the powerful elite and un-accountable corporate now days to capture the culture, art, natural resources and even labour of the marginalized. Those who use influence to grab the rights of people employ religion and caste as tool to engage victims in to false fight and thereby establish their supremacy. There is only one alternative against politics of division based on hatred and that is unity of broken people.
What will be our strategy against politics of hatred, violence and exploitation? First unity is unity against caste system, a historical system of exclusion i.e. unity among the lower castes people that have been suppressed since centuries with the progressive anti-caste people born in upper caste. This will be first of its kind unity, which will not be against any person born in to upper caste communities neither against any religion.
Shirin Shabana Khan said that second unity is unity among minorities who suffered with communal fascism, those who believe in communal harmony and people with secular values against neo-fascism. Unity of all poor from all communities against the suffering with neo-liberal policy is the third kind of unity. Since those broken with different kinds of suppression and exclusion means dalit therefore these three kinds of unities is base of impart the neodalit movement.
Head of Gramya organization Bindu Singh said that this initiative will not be on the front of a political party but on a social level which will induce political parties to work for the people as neo dalit agenda.
Nasreen Fatima from Lucknow said that women are making an appeal today that all progressive people with Dalit and OBCs should unity against caste system, secular people and Minorities should unite against communal fascism and poor should unite and participate in the neo-dalit Movement. They should take people from the path of justice, fraternity, rule of law and non-violence to a people’s movement only then will the society specially the women will be free from torture and atrocities.
Without the participation of the women there can be no sustainable stand against injustice, exploitation, atrocity, inhuman acts and communalism. The Banaras declaration in support of Neo-dalit movement was translated in to several languages and programme for debate and support were organized.