Fight against Corruption: Are we Serious?

03/07/2011

<abbr title=" by Vidya Bhushan Rawat

Those were the years when the people in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar thought that now the change was about to come. The crowd at his gathering was increasing regularly. The speeches were laced with new adjectives of ‘future of India’. Rajiv’s clean image had taken a beating. The exposé had jolted his government. As the Finance Minister, he ordered that the corruption charges against prominent industrialists be probed. Many of them had to go to jail. He selected his officers on the basis of their probity and personal strength. They gave him results. Soon, the ‘best Finance Minister’ was shunted out of the Ministry to ‘defend’ the country. The industrialists wanted him out. He ordered an inquiry against corrupt politicians too and they also wanted his exit. No industrial house in India can survive without corruption. Tax evasions were rampant and he was trying to find out the big fishes without understanding that these sharks would connive together and throw him out.

He was sent to the Defence Ministry ignoring the big public opinion against his ouster. The govern-ment of that the day was habitual of such things. Rajiv was surrounded by the coterie and completely ignored saner advices. As he moved to the Defence Ministry, he found that there was a commission paid in the HDW Howitzer deal ordered from Germany. The Bofors report also came out and it became difficult for the Congress to hide its face. This ‘he’ that time was V.P. Singh whom we all love to hate despite his personal integrity and honesty in political life.

Yes, V.P. Singh was dismissed from the primary membership of the Congress Party for his fight against corruption. Yet, the successful thing was that he became the symbol of the fight against corruption in India in the late eighties. The students, middle classes jumped up and joined hands. His personal image remained clean all the time. The government of the day started a personal vendetta and fictitious reports were planted. Editors were hired to write in papers. Some of the biggest names of the Indian media jumped into the fray and allowed themselves to be used in a vicious propaganda against Singh. A fake account was opened under his son Ajeya Singh’s name in St. Kitts Island which later turned out to be fictitious. His ancestral property issue also cropped up. Yet, V.P. Singh could survive because he was simply a man of integrity and his life was open for probe.

The upper-caste middle classes were first to jump on his bandwagon when they realise that he was now ready to overthrow the government. The Brahmins of Varanasi anointed him with title ‘Rajarshi’ and he developed tremendous goodwill of the people, that is, the upper castes.

V.P. Singh came to power in 1989. He ensured that people with integrity take charge of the Ministry. The government was functioning well. It started allowing freedom to Doordarshan and All India Radio. It was refreshing to see news that time. It was working on labour and election reforms. A lot of other issues, including the Lokpal, was under consideration then. That apart, the Janata Dal as a political party had promised to fulfil 27 per cent quota for the OBCs.

On August 7, 1990, V.P. Singh announced the acceptance of the Mandal Commission recommen-dations in Parliament. For one month nothing happened and slowly the upper castes realised that their control over power is slipping and unless a slanderous campaign is started, they will be completely out of power. So, not only slander but everything that was available in the dictionary was used to defame the Dalits and OBCs. The middle class Hindus were in the streets against the OBC quota. V.P. Singh became one of the most hated politicians of our time. So much that none of the Hindu journalists ever want to say good things about him. Today, when we are fighting against corruption, none of these leaders bother to even mention his name. Why?

The answer lies in the upper-caste hatred against anything that provides connection of power to the Dalits and marginalised. V.P. Singh was the greatest person as long as he was talking about corruption and but he became the worst man once he started talking about the Dalits and OBCs. His government not only ensured the OBC quota but it also provided reservation for neo-Buddhists at the centenary celebrations of Babasaheb Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar and honoured him with Bharat Ratna. Similarly, Mayawati is not corrupt as long as she placates the upper castes but as soon as she erected those monuments of the Dalit Bahujan icons in the city of Lucknow, we are angry because we feel that the natural inheritor of our roundabouts in the city centre are the Gandhis, Nehrus, and our so many gods and goddesses. The upper caste-middle class feeling is that the Dalit Bahujan icons should remain in the bastis and dalitwadas.

WHEN we talk about corruption, how can we ignore the illicit land deals in our country? How can Anna and his team just feel that corruption is only in terms of money? The biggest corruption in today’s India is the sale of our natural resources, our land, forest and water. What is their stand on it? What will they do that powerful and well-connected people do not buy land just because they have money? Will we put a ceiling on land in India despite the people’s purchasing power? When the civil society wants to judge everyone, who will judge the civil society? What is this civil society? Did Anna and his team follow any principle of democracy in forming his team? How does democracy survive with such black-mailing tactics of Gandhi who used it to foil the separate electorate of Dalits?’

The issue of corruption is not a minor one but then those who want to fight against it should also remain clean. Yes, for people like us, they should not only be clean but also have faith in our secular pluralistic values and cannot be hate-preachers. How are these multi-billionaires, who have acquired their property in each State and even outside India, interested in the fight against corruption? Doesn’t Anna and his team know about the Baba and his games, his property and money? Is it a fight among those who say you have grabbed over one hundred million rupees and it is now our term to do so? How are we going to talk about individuals? Democracy will have to come out of such individualism and work. Yes, corruption affects us all. So why not we start to work developing a movement from the ground involving those whose lands have been grabbed by the local elites who may be donating huge sums to these anti-corruption crusaders? Should we not see who these forces we want to project as alternative are?

Just because there is a crowd does not mean that it has the right to do anything. Crowd does not provide legitimacy. Many of our friends actually feel that anyone who brings out the crowd is great. Yes, the Baba’s crowd was not a crowd for social justice. Anna’s crowd is similar. The stupidity of the Sangh’s propaganda is that the Ramlila Ground incident is being portrayed as Jalianwalla Bagh massacre. And see their gleeful faces at Rajghat. Sushma was dancing while Advani was comparing this incident to Jalianwalla Bagh. None ever questioned about the fictitious land deals of Ram Dev and other Babas. If we ignore the vital corruption in terms of land in the name of mutts, temples, gurudwaras and mosques, we cannot fight against corruption. In fact, we provide legitimacy. We cannot start a movement in which a majority of the population feels isolated, and fearful. The concern of 20 per cent Indian Muslims and other minorities are important and cannot be ignored. It is not just corruption but also their place in India and partnership in decision-making. How do we allow Dalits, Adivasis, Muslims and others partnership in our movement if we allow the entire reactionary forces in our decision-making? Just because you want to eliminate the Congress Party does not mean you can ally with anyone.

Yes, if the government and those who claim to work for us, are serious, then they must talk about corruption of all kinds, in all forms, anywhere. And not talk what is suitable to the middle classes who started corruption and want to lead the movement against it too. We want the government to release all the land papers of temples, mutts, gurudwaras, churches and mosques. Let the people know how much money is lying there and who is using that for what purpose. Anna Hazare and his team would do great harm if they do not consider this as corruption. Will they speak on it? Will they take on the religious thugs sitting on our land and water and preaching of austerity to us?

The Hindutva forces are working overnight on their agenda. They will use all the platforms which bring back power to the bramanical social order. After Ramdev, they want to bring back Uma Bharati to fight against Mayawati. While the Congress is shamelessly sticking to the Brahmin elite in Uttar Pradesh, the Hindutva forces are busy experimenting and who else can they use better than the Shudras? It is time we understand the dangers of such a fight against corruption and expose them tooth and nail. None can be a bigger threat to India than the ascendancy of the Hindutva forces to power. Let us fight against corruption and expose the very source of it.

Original Article: http://www.mainstreamweekly.net/article2867.html


AFRICAN DIASPORA IN THE INDIAN SUBCONTINENT

12/02/2011

THE GLOBAL AFRICAN COMMUNITY

H I S T O R Y   N O T E S


A girl from the Yanadi tribal group in South India

AFRICAN DIASPORA IN THE INDIAN SUBCONTINENT

Posted by RUNOKO RASHIDI


CASTE DISCRIMINATION A WORLDWIDE PROBLEM FOR ALL BLACK PEOPLE
AND COLLECTIVE RESISTANCE IS NEEDED TO DEFEAT IT

When you come to the tribals there is absolutely no controversy regarding the race of these people.
They are clearly, physically, Africoid, they are linguistically distinct, religiously distinct.

–Horen Tudu, Researcher and Pan Africanist

Oct. 10, 2006

Few people are aware that India’s 160 million untouchables or Dalits are descendants of Africans who once ruled the Indus Valley. But caste discrimination affects all black people, who are regarded as untouchables, even in the US and UK.

Few people are aware that India’s 160 million untouchables or Dalits are descendants of Africans who once ruled the Indus Valley. But caste discrimination affects all black people, who are regarded as untouchables, even in the US and UK.

It may seem ironic to many that India’s untouchable castes known as Dalits, who are despised and condemned in Hindu scriptures for the colour of their skin and who are oppressed and exploited are distant relations to Africans, who were dehumanised in order to justify their enslavement to enrich the West.

But two papers published by African scholar and physicist Cheikh Anta Diop in 1955 and 1967 were translated from French to English and published as: The African Origin of Civilization: Myth or Reality in 1974. In this book, as well as establishing the African origins of Egypt, Diop also revealed that Africans known as Dravidians created the Indus Valley civilization.

Dravidians are a linguistic group under which many different groups fall, but many scholars aside from Diop, including: Chiek Tidiane N Diave, S R Santharam and U.Pupadhyaya Susheela O.Uphadyaya, have found both linguistic and cultural links between Dravidians and Africans.

Diop wrote: “…The Indo-Europeans never created a civilization in their own native lands: the Eurasian plains. The civilizations attributed to them are inevitably located in the heart of Negro countries in the southern part of the northern hemisphere: Egypt, Arabia, Phoenicia, Mesopotamia, Elam, India. In all those lands there were negro civilizations when the Indo-Europeans arrived as rough nomads during the second millennium.”

Diop described Dravidians as a type of the black race with: “Black skin, often exceptionally black, with straight hair, aquiline nose, thin lips, an acute cheekbone angle. We find a prototype of this race in India: the Dravidian.”

But the real irony of the caste system is that is that it is a corruption of a social system invented by the early African civilizations, according to a 19th century French anthropologist called Francois Lenormant, whom Diop refers to in his book: “The Aryas of India…adopted it, borrowed it from the Kushite populations.”

Today, the descendants of the Dravidians live under the scourge of what is often referred to as: “India’s hidden apartheid.” In a 1999 report by Human Rights Watch called: Broken People: Caste Violence Against India’s Untouchables, the extent to which the caste system affects the lives of a population almost three times the size of the UK was revealed:

“Untouchables may not cross the line dividing their part of the village from that occupied by higher castes,” the report stated. But segregation is just the tip of the iceberg. As well as Dalits being forbidden to worship in the same temples as other castes, from using the same wells, and drinking from the same cups, they are denied land that is legally theirs, made to perform degrading tasks and are often subjected to violence, including the rape of Dalit women.

Horen Tudu was born in Bangledesh into the Santhal tribal group but grew up in the USA. He is a researcher and staunch Pan Africanist who has written extensively about African descendants in the Indian subcontinent. Asked whether Dalits are aware of their African heritage, he told Black Britain: “I do believe that they are starting to understand that the upper caste function from the paradigm of the Indo Europeans and that the Dalits and the tribals themselves are indigenous and that the proto Australoids are African.”

But aside from the Dalits, India’s tribal groups make up another 84 million of its population. Tudu told Black Britain: “When you come to the tribals there is absolutely no controversy regarding the race of these people. They are clearly, physically, Africoid, they are linguistically distinct, religiously distinct; you can connect their spiritual systems to the spiritual systems in Africa – there is no ambiguity there.”


Caste Discrimination Affects Black People Everywhere

“If they do employ Dalits it will be on less wages and there is no kind of interaction.
Temples are separate; there is no inter-dining or inter-marriage.

–Maria Doss is from the Bhagwan Valmiki Trust in London.


Maria Doss at a campaign in Norway organised by the International Dalit Solidarity Network.

The Bhagwan Valmiki Trust (BVT) is a community organisation based in London which aims to promote development, education and awareness among the Valmiki community in the UK. A Dalit sub-caste, Valmikis are descendants of the sweeping class from the Punjab region of Non-Aryan groups including Greeks that came into the sub-continent. Because of their non-Aryan ancestry they were placed into the lower caste groups. They traditionally carry out menial and degrading jobs such as cleaning toilets, removing human excrement with their bare hands.

Maria Doss, a member of BVT told Black Britain that in India the relationship between Africans and Dalits is really only known among the“intelligentsia,” as opposed to the majority of Dalits who are uneducated. He said they had “lost their cultural identity,” and see themselves as Indians rather than African descendants. But Doss said that he would welcome an alliance between Africans and Dalits to collectively fight against caste discrimination.

Discrimination against Dalits is not restricted to India and as Doss explained to Black Britain: “Is very much alive in the UK.” In July of this year, a report called: No escape: Caste discrimination in the UK, by the Dalit Solidarity Network outlined the extent to which caste discrimination manifests itself in the UK among Indian communities both at school and in the workplace.

Doss told Black Britain: “Even at the hospital where I work as a supervisor I can see clear caste discrimination between two groups.” One female worker aged 55 told Doss: “If my son marries from that caste my father will kill me.”

He told Black Britain: “That is why we say that caste discrimination is worse than racism, because it is violent and direct but hidden. You cannot see the enemy.” Yet higher caste Indians who are often in positions of power are able to exert control over the lives of Dalits living in the UK.

Doss told Black Britain: “If they do employ Dalits it will be on less wages and there is no kind of interaction. Temples are separate; there is no inter-dining or inter-marriage.” But he said that even among Dalits themselves there is little interaction.
“Bhuddists look down on Ravidassis and Valmikis,” he said.

Doss told Black Britain: “I have been to many places, colleges, churches and ordinary places, campaigning against these issues…we know what we need and what we can do. We try to bring them (Dalits) together.”

BVT have been liaising with networks in India and is hoping to establish a Dalit reconciliation centre in the UK in order to unite the various Dalit sub-castes for the purpose of strengthening the Dalits as a whole to collectively fight the caste discrimination that affects them all. Black Britain asked Doss whether he felt it was important for Dalits to know their history and the origins of the caste system that put them at the bottom of society: “Yes it is very important for our movement,” he said.

Tudu pointed out that because of poverty among Dalits in the Indian subcontinent, it tends to be higher castes individuals who actually travel, but wherever they go their socio economic caste system travels with them. He told Black Britain in the USA the first wave of Indian immigrants never interacted with African Americans and: “Always treated them with contempt.”

The reason for the hostility is because: “They actually see the Anglo Saxons as super Brahmins or ultra high caste Hindus…within their perverse world view, in terms of social status, race and skin colour. So they have always had this irrational hatred towards the African Americans that the African Americans themselves do not really understand.”

Tudu went on to relay a familiar picture in the UK which has caused underlying racial tensions in Birmingham, London and other areas where Asians live in close proximity to Africans and African Caribbeans: “A lot of Indian shopkeepers and other Pakistani groups have come into the US, gone specifically into depressed urban areas and have made money off the local people and treated them very badly. You have to also understand that most upper caste Hindus view Africans, African Americans or African Caribbeans in the UK as untouchables. That’s a distinction that must be made.”

The important thing to note here is that it is not just Dalit immigrants from the Indian subcontinent who are victims of caste discrimination in the UK and USA but continental Africans, African Caribbeans and African Americans. Citing Hinduism as the basis for this discrimination, Tudu told Black Britain: “It is obsessed with racial purity and the keeping of the race separate in order to also endorse white supremacy.”


Caste Discrimination and White Supremacy on the Indian Subcontinent

“They actually see the Anglo Saxons as super Brahmins or ultra high caste Hindus…within their perverse world view, in terms of social status, race and skin colour. So they have always had this irrational hatred towards the African Americans…”

–Horen Tudu, Researcher and Pan Africanist


Horen Tudu (centre) with other Santhals from the village of
Dinajpur in Bangladesh

If the early Aryan invasion on the Indian subcontinent, much like chattel enslavement has left a legacy of obsession with skin colour. Tudu told Black Britain that Unilever markets a skin bleaching cream
called: Fair and Lovely which he noticed on a recent visit to Bangladesh in a television advertisement:
“They show this …girl with dark skin who can’t get a job, can’t get married, is doing poorly in her studies and all of a sudden she uses this bleaching cream and her life is much better – and they’re marketing this kind of stuff.”

Tudu said that the aim of marketing bleaching creams in the region is: “To destroy the self-esteem of the local people.” He branded Bollywood as“Openly racist…because they don’t allow anybody who is dark skinned in there and they are 100 per cent Brahmins.” Bollywood producers are“Ashraf Muslim ethnicities who are descendants of non-black people,” he said.

Tudu told Black Britain that Pakistanis are also non-black people closely related to people in the Middle East : “And also have contempt for Africans and blacks.” Upper caste Indians and Pakistanis have even gone to the extreme of creating their own ethnic group called Desi , because they are so desperate to believe they are Caucasians.

He told Black Britain: “I find this skin colour issue to be very debilitating, if you look at the psychological state of the indigenous people. They are being pounced on in every single way,they are really trying to destroy these people inside out [and] it’s very shameful.”

In Bangladesh dark skinned, short people assume a lowly status in society, despite the fact that 80 per cent of its population is of that appearance: “But you have individuals of foreign origin who are ruling the country and who are not indigenous to Bangladesh, but they are promoting their white supremacist ideals on the local people,” Tudu said.

Bangladeshi women suffer most from self-loathing and a lack of confidence, despising their broad, flat noses and fuller lips and comparing themselves less favourably to the fair-skinned women portrayed in Bollywood movies: “It’s very, very sad to see a group of people with so much self-hatred and so much of a lack of consciousness [because] they have no concept of their history,” he said.

One form of resistance chosen by Dalits as a means of escape is conversion to Buddhism, an action advocated by Dr B R Amdedkar, an Indian who was born into the Dalit castes who overcame discrimination to become a scholar, lawyer and architect of the Indian constitution as well as the political leader of the Dalits. He was also a Buddhist revivalist who advocated conversion to Buddhism as a means of escaping discrimination.

Diop suggested that Buddha was a black Egyptian priest who was driven out of the City of Memphis by Cambyses. Iniyan Elango, M.D, is the author of a book called Without Malice: The Truth About India. Elango suggests: “Gautama Buddha, the Black revolutionary who founded the egalitarian religion of Buddhism to counter and destroy the bigotry of Hinduism, was a Black prince. But the Hindus highjacked Buddhism and killed Buddhists in large numbers. The Buddhist missionaries fled to other parts of Asia and spread the message of the Buddha in China and other parts of Asia. Those indigenous Dravidians who were loyal to Buddha and resisted the caste system became the untouchable outcastes (Dalits).”

Horen Tudu concurs with this view describing Buddha as a tribal from north-east India: “He protested against this racism coming from the Brahmins and the Hindus and he created his own spiritual system that was for the black people and for the indigenous people there.” Tudu also feels that Hindus appropriate these indigenous beliefs, incorporating them into the Hindu system as a means of control by trying to pass off the Buddha as a Hindu god.

Speaking to Black Britain about the reason Dalits choose to convert to Buddhism, Doss explained: “Today most Dalits feel that they should be Buddhists.” But many state governments in India have introduced legislation to prevent Dalits from converting.

Black Britain asked in what way converting to Buddhism would change the fortunes of the Dalits if they remain in the same caste even after conversion. He explained:
“As a community of Buddhists together, they are quite different – very strong. It empowers them socially and economically and they would proudly say they are neo-Buddhists.”Doss admitted that whilst conversion to other religions “hasn’t helped,” conversion to Buddhism “is helping and creating an identity.”

Some Dalits, especially in Bangladesh have turned to Islam because of its absence of caste and to escape oppression whilst others have converted to Christianity, sometimes merging it with their indigenous beliefs.

The African Influence on Dalit Resistance

Given the fact that Dalits are closely related to Africans and that globally Africans are victims of caste discrimination (whether they are aware of it or
not) makes them natural allies in resistance of it. Tudu told Black Britain: “If you go to Bangladesh, for example, you’ll find in various regions that you cannot distinguish those people from [Africans ]. You’ll see people darker and more physically African than any person in Sub-Saharan Africa.”

He also feels that in terms of the political development of Dalit organisations: ”I think you can compare these movements directly to the struggles of the African Americans in particular.” Since the 1970s resistance movements modelled on black pride have sprung up all over the Indian subcontinent including the Dalit Panther party, based on the Black Panthers which has several branches.

Tudu told Black Britain: “This kind of consciousness among the Dalits is making the upper castes and Hindu fundamentalist parties very scared.” He explained that many people are unaware that the Dalits are descendants of Indian tribals that fought against the Aryans who were later brought into the caste system by force.

But in terms of politicised Dalit groups: “They mentally function from this indigenous African paradigm.” Scholars like Runoko Rashidi who is US based is essentially the voice of the Dalits in the US. He has written several books on the subject, most notably African Presence in Early Asia.

Rashidi has worked with many African American scholars including John Henrik Clark as well as other prominent Dalit scholar activists such as V.T Rajshekar. Tudu explained: “There are quite a few Dalit intellectuals who are promoting this African centred belief. In fact, I believe all of them function from an African centred paradigm.”

Periyar E.V.Ramasamy is considered the father of the Dravidian Nationalist Movement and founder of Dravidar Kazhagam, the first Dravidian political party in India. He pioneered the idea of self-respect among Dalits: “That is, why should an indigenous person or black person within the Indian subcontinent accept low status within this Aryan supremacist framework? They should have self respect and promote their own identity,” Tudu told Black Britain.

Tudu believes that many radical elements in Dalit movements: “Were influenced by the struggles of African Americans,” but furthermore that the time is right for a resurgence of Pan Africanism to deal with white supremacy and the oppression of black peoples. Commenting on the way that Marcus Garvey was able to mobilise millions of Africans across the globe in the last century, he told Black Britain:

“We need something like that to unify the world’s oppressed and fragmented black masses. If you look at any country in the world, you’ll find that the poorest members of the society, the persons that have the lowest social status have African origin.”

This particularly applies to indigenous people such as the Africans on the western coast of Mexico who are descendants of slaves and the tribals in India and Bangladeshi who have become victims of oppression in their own country. Commenting on the upper castes in India Tudu remarked: “We regard these people as foreigners. I myself am a direct descendant of the indigenous people – black people of the Indian subcontinent and I consider those individuals to be foreigners and I see all African people worldwide as my brothers and sisters.”

Like Doss, Tudu is adamant that resistance and the solutions for black people lies in education of self: “I think the critical effort should be directed toward the education of [our] people. We need to have our own scholars doing this research [and] we need to resurrect our history. We have to know where we come from – all of us worldwide.”

Tudu told Black Britain that the ideology of Pan Africanism has a major role to play: “All of us can take credit for each other’s accomplishments and that we are one people. That is all African people are one united people, not fragmented based on language or tribe, we’re all the same.”

Article from – Black Britian News
23/10/2006


 


NAGAS: THE ANCIENT WARRIORS & RULERS OF INDIA

12/02/2011

By: Pianke Nubiyang

A HISTORY OF RACISM AND THE RETALIATION AGAINST IT VOLUME ONE: CHAPTER
ONE: THE ANCIENT BEGINNINGS OF RACISM

The earliest form of racism may have been introduced and practiced by
wandering barbarians from Erasia, who spoke a variety of languages
before the Black Aryan (Indo-Aryan) languages of India was taught to
them. These barbarians were Caucasian for the most part, although
there were Black chiefs among them, according to Chancellor Williams
in his book, The Destruction of Black Civilization (Third World Press,
Chicago; 1976).

Later, after the influence of the Black Davidians, Black Tartars and
other Black Negroid and Australoid types who lived in Asia in ancient
times (and who still do today), the barbarians learned various skills,
including how to hitch horses to carriages and how to ride horses for
purposes of war. These techniques learned from the Blacks of Asia was
used to invade the ancient Black civilizations of the region. India
was one of the first to be infiltrated, followed by other Black
civilizations to the south, including Mesopotamia and Egypt. Between
2000 B.C. to about 1500 B.C., waves of the northern barbarians invaded
India. All did not enter ancient India as an invasion force, since
they were not militarily strong enough to defeat the mighty Black
armies of the ancient Ethiopic Dravidian Indians. In fact, many
barbarians came in trickles, looking for food and lodging in what was
one of the greatest Black civilizations earth, and one of the most
ancient.

Long before the infiltrations of the aliens, India’s wealth, culture,
architecture, civilization was legendary. The ancient Indians belonged
to the Kushsite African race, still numerious in a wide area of the
globe, spread from India in the East to Senegal in the West. Of this
group of ancient Blacks, the Naga People were and still are the
largest subgroup of the Kushitic speaking branch of the Black African
race. In fact, the Nagas still retain the title “Naga” in various
forms throughout Africa and South Asia even today. There are many
examples of the term “Naga” still being used to describe various
groups in Africa and Asia, who are all of the Kushitic branch of the
Black African race. For example, the Blacks of West Africa were called
“Nugarmar-ta.” “Nagomina” is the name of a tribe from West Africa, who
were part of a series of great civilizations which existed in the
region before 1000 B.C. The “Naga,” are another group of people
related to India’s Naga people, who live in various parts of East
Africa and in the nation of Sudan, the original homeland of all Naga
and other Kushitic Black peoples. The word “Nahas” is another word for
“Nubian.” Names of tribes and nationalities such as “Nuer,” “Nuba,”
“Nubian” are all related to the Naga tribes of India and South Asia.
Long before the barbarians infiltrated India, the Blacks (Naga,
Negrito, Negroid and all those belonging to the Negroid-Australoid
Black race, as well as pure Negritic racial types ruled India as well
as a substantial portion of Asia from Arabia to China and the South
Pacific, as well as the Indian Ocean region. In India, the Blacks
built one of the world’s most magnificient and glorious civilizations.
This civilization had been developing since about 6000 years before
Christ. The magnificent cities of Harrappa and Mohenjo-daro are two of
the many cities built by these Blacks. These cities cover large
regions of Northern India and Pakistan. Wayne Chandler explains in the
book, African Presence in Early Asia (edt. by Ivan Van Sertima,
Transaction Publishers, Newbruinswick, NJ; 1985, p. 83), “The Jewel in
the Lotus: The Ethiopian Presence in the Indus Valley Civilization,”
“Mohenjo-daro and Harrappa, the greatest examples of Harrappan
architecture were built between 3000 B.C. and 2500 B.C.; these
masterpieces of Harappan city planning were the culmination of towns
and villages which date from 6000 B.C. to 7000 B.C.”

India’s ancient original Blacks (and much of today’s Black
Indians…Nagas…Black Dalits) belong to the same Negritic race of
today. Even India’s Pygmy types such as the Andaman Islanders are
related to the Pygmies of Africa. The connections between the Blacks
of India and those of Africa are so close, that even the names given
to the various Naga peoples of India and those of Africa are close in
sound. For example groups in parts of Sudan are called Nagas, whereas
in India, Black groups with racial features similar to the people of
Sudan are also called Nagas. The languages spoken by the Nagas and
other Dravidians such as Telegu, Malayalam, Kanada and others are
related to the Kushite languages of East Africa, such as Gala and
those spoken by the Nilotic peoples. Moreover, it seems that these
languages spread far beyond India into Cambodia and South China in the
East to West Africa in the West. Kushitic speaking people migrated in
both directions.

THE EARLY BEGINNINGS OF CASTE, COLOR CONSCIOUSNESS AND RACISM IN
ANCIENT INDIA

Racism against India’s ancient Blacks who founded the Indus Valley
civilizations over four thousand years Before Christ, began after
barbarians from Eurasia infiltrated the Indus Valley. These barbarians
came from the northern parts of Eurasia and from the northwest and
spread into northern India, some migrated to parts of Europe and the
Middle East, where they encountered more Black civilizations. The
barbarians were not militarily stronger than the advanced and
militarily superior Blacks of the Indus Valley. In fact, according to
Drucilla Dungee Houston, in her book Wonderful Ethiopians of the
Ancient Cushite Empire (1985, p. 221) “An ancient treatise tells of
the early Cushite element, that they adorned their dead with gifts,
with rainment, and ornaments, imagining thereby that they shall attain
the world to come. Their ornaments were bronze copper and gold. One
non-Aryan chief described this race (the Blacks) as of fearful
swiftness, unyielding in battle, in color like a dark blue cloud. This
old type is represented today by the compact masses of the south.
These Dravidians constitute forty-six millions (during the 1920’s;
today however they are over 800 million Black Dalits, Tribals,
Backward castes and Scheduled Castes). They represent the unmixed
Cushite Type. All the rest of the blood of India is heavily mixed with
this strain.” (D.D. Houston, Black Classics Press, Baltimore MD) When
the barbarians infiltrated into India, they may not have invaded in a
massive sweep, for surely, they would have been wiped out by the
invincible Naga armies who were well equipped, strong and fierce as
mentioned above. Yet, it seems that from the beginning, their
objective was to take over the glorious lans of the Nagas and other
Blacks of India. According to Al Bash-am, the Blacks of India were
described by the invaders as “dark and illfavored, bull lipped, snub
nosed woshippers of the phallus….they are rich in cattle and dwell
in fortified places called pur.” It is interesting to note that the
dwelling place of the Pharaoh was also called “Pur-o” from which them
name “pharaoh” originated. In his booklet, “Nagaloka: The Fractured
and Forgotten Glory of the Bahujan Indians,” by M. Gopinath (April 14,
1998), he explains that the Aryans arrived in India about 2000 years
B.C. In fact, their descendants still exist in India among the Bramins
and Banias (Banias are among the Blackest of Blacks). These vagrant
migrants (the ancient invaders) arrived in ancient India (Naga-
mandla) looking for food and shelter. The Naga kings allowed them to
settle in the Naga kingdoms, gave them food and allowed them to use
the land for their wellbeing. Soon afterwards however, the Blacks were
repaid by the barbarians with violence and the eventual takeover of
their lands. Gopinath states clearly in the book, Nagaloka (April,
1998), that in Nagamandla, the Aryan aliens felt insecure, and feared
that their positions would be lowered even more than they had been.
They began to devide and cause strife and discord among the Naga
tribes, in order to gain a dominant foothold (sounds farmiliar?).
Their tricks brought about enmity between the various Naga kingdoms (
people of West Africa, Sudan, and other parts of the world who
continue to kill each other over the religious beliefs of others
should take note). Gopinath’s point that the aliens felt “insecure in
their positions,” clearly underscores the major point of this book,
which is, those who claim to be “superior,” may actually feel inferior
and therefore, they have devised racist and evil means to oppress
others in order to keep themselves at the top. Gopinath states that
many of these raids were led by these Aryan infiltrators, who helped
destroy great cities such as Harappa and Mohenjo-daro. The result was
the weakening of the Naga kings. Soon their kingdoms fell under the
control of the barbarians. The caste system was introduced to further
devide and controle the Black Naga people, while the Aryans
established themselves at the very top, with full control over all the
rest of the Naga people. In fact, the Aryans called themselves,
“Bhoodevatas,” or “Gods of the Earth,” Gopinath explains, (Nagaloka,
The fractured History and Forgotten Glory of the Bahujan Indians,
compiled by M. Gopinath, Dalit Sahitya Sanghatane, Bangalore, India)

THE NAGA’S FIGHT AGAINST THE RACIST “VARNA” COLOR RACISM OF INDIA

A large majority of the Naga People refused to be dragged into the
evil, racist ‘varna’ or color and caste apartheid introduced by the
barbarians. These Nagas fought the system and were classified as
outcastes, unapproachables, untouchables and unseeables. The color of
skin of the Naga people being the glorious black complexion and a
devine blessing by the sun, which they considered an honor, was
considered repugnant to the albino colored invaders. Thus, to touch a
person classified as “untouchable” was considered repugnant by the
albino colored invaders. The name “untouchable” also meant that the
original Black Nagas were outside of the caste system and were (and
still are) its greatest opponents and enemies. The barbarians who
invaded India and introduced the “varna” or color and caste system
which devided and graded the various Naga tribes and other Indians
into various levels of power, had poluted some of the pure black Naga
people, creating various strata of color ranging from fair to black
skinned. In fact, their system was the world’s very first system of
apartheid, Jim Crow and color racism. V.T. Rajshekar lists the levels
of the racist caste system in his book, Dalit: The Back Untouchables
of India (Clarity Press, Atlanta; 1987, p. 56) as: “The Bramin, 5
percent of Hindus; priestly caste The Kshatriya; 4 percent of Hindus;
warrior caste The Vaishya; 2 percent of Hindus; merchant caste The
Shudra; 45 percent of Hindus; lowest caste (street sweepers) India’s
Black Dalits or Untouchables are outside of the caste system. They are
the descendants of the original Black Naga and other Black tribes of
Black African roots who were the first people on earth and who spread
throughout the entire world in prehistoric times. As already
mentioned, these are the Blacks who built Harappa and Mohenjo-daro,
two of the major cities and urban complexes of the Indus Valley
Civilizations, where many beartiful cities were built by the Nagas and
other Blacks.

According to Gopinath (April 14, 1998, pp. 9, 10), the barbarians
introduced a disgraceful civilization, where drinking, free sex,
gambling and other evil vices were practiced among them. Many rites of
worship to invoke their gods were some of these functions. In due
time, these practices began to influence others. (4) Gopinath states
that the Nagas were pushed to “poverty, ignorance, hunger and
unemployment.” (p. 12). Due to these calamities, “robbery, looting,
murder and prostitution which were unknown to the Nagamandala so far
took birth. Drought, deforestation, crop failure, and such other
natural imbalances started to surface. Farmers and businessmen were
forced to pay more taxes to the government. Enraged by this unethical
debauchery, the unbeaten Nagarajas waged wars against them. They
attacked the yagas and yajans of the Aryan rulers. But these Nagas
were so much demoralized and disunited that they could not launch an
organized battle under one leadership against the Aryans. Making use
of this failure on the part of the Nagas the Aryan rulers had managed
to picture the rebellious Rakshasas, Asauras and Dhanavas as
evil-minded “demons” and all those Aryan murders of rebel Nagarajas
were hailed as incarnations of (avatharas of their god.” (Nagaloka:
The Fractured History and Forgotten Glory of the Bahujan Indians; M.
Gopinath; Dalit Sahitya Sanghatane, Bangalore, India). (5) The issues
discussed by M. Gopinath brings to mind the common tricks used by the
invaders to gain a foothold in India and to establish their racist
devide and conquer caste system. These techniques are still being used
today in all parts of the world where the descendants of these
barbarians entered or gained control and domination over the past five
hundred years.

In most cases, however, the victims, who have been the original Black
races of planet earth have refused to unite in order to eliminate all
forms of oppression once and for all. Black against Black divisions
designed to keep weakness and fragmentation alive and to promote
destruction from outside forces continue to exist. In some cases these
divisions continue to exist even after the original perpetrator has
left the scene. In nations such as West and Eastern Africa, alien
religions introduced by the enemies of Africans, have worked well in
implementing the invaders’ “devide and conquer,” schemes. In many
cases, Africans have allowed such religious concepts to be blindly
followed by their people without examining the consequences on the
original African culture and system of beliefs, which are more
adaptable to the African way of thinking. For example, the idea of
worshipping another human as a devine, supreme being is unacceptable
to many Africans. Glory must be given to those African ancestors who
refused to join the evil schemes of the conquerors, disguised as
religious enlightenment and spiritual self-fulfillment. Glory must be
given to those who fought against being forcibly converted and
rejected beliefs which placed them in stratified, divided classes and
castes. Many fled into inaccessable areas such as the mountains and
forests in order to maintain their ancient way of live and reject the
beliefs and tricks of the invaders. Those who remained near or among
the barbarian invaders are today the most oppressed people on earth
today.

V.T. Rajshekar explains in his essay, “The Black Untouchables of
India,” African Presence in Early Asia, edt. by Ivan Van Sertima,
(1993, p. 237), that the racist caste system is explained in the Rig
Vedas. (6) On the other hand, according to Drucilla Dunjee Houston,
the Vedas were originally Black Kushite literary works stolen and
corrupted by the invaders, who added racist ideas to them. She
explains in Wonderful Ethiopians of the Ancient Kushite Empire:

“5000 years ago we have shown there was no branch of the Aryan race
that could have produced the Rig Veda. 5000 years ago, no Japhethic
nation possessed blacksmiths, chariots, and the civilization the Rig
Veda reveals.” (7)

According to Houston, the Kushites lived in the region of Hindu-Kush
and the plains of India. They took Dravidian wives, she states, since
they were probably of the same Black Kushite stock. Between 3000 to
4500 B.C., the Kushite father was represened as a priest of the family
who conducted religious rites. The burning of widows was not practiced
and women were held at high positions. Houston states that according
to the Rig-Vedas, the ancient Kushites of India were blacksmiths,
goldsmiths, coppersmiths, carpenters and husbandmen who practiced
agriculture. Houston states (1985, p.218), “They fought from chariots
as did all the Cushite nations. They settled down as husbandmen to
till the fields. Unlike the modern Hindu they ate beef. They adored
gods identical with those of Egypt, Chaldea and Ethiopia. Who were
these people who 4500 B.C. possessed towns and built ships? Semites
and Turanians had no such arts.” (D.D. Houston, Wonderful Ethiopians
of the Ancient Cushite Empire, Black Classics Press, Baltimore, MD.:
1985, p. 218) (8)

According to Houston, by the time the GrecoBactrian and Sythians
entered India around 327- 544 A.D., the fairest districts (where the
descendants of the fairskinned Aryans lived) in the northern parts of
India were still owned by the Kushites. She points out that ruins
built by the Kushites cn be found throughout Oudh and the northwestern
provinces, where they reigned from the fifth to the eleventh centuries
A.D. She underscores this important fact :

“Some superficial interpretations of the Vedas attempt to make out the
Dravidian Kushites as disturbers of sacrifices, lawless without gods,
and without rites. This would not describe the Cushites anywhere in
the world. To those who read the Rig-Veda intelligently and without
the confusing glasses of prejudice, these mutilated and interpolated
writings are but a description of the familiar traits and customs of
Cushite Ethiopians. The Brahmins were probably a much later and
intermixed branch of the inhabitants of Hindu-Kush. That they were
intermixed we can tell by their cruelty. Full blooded Cushites were
gentle. The fact thatthe Brahmins altered the Sanskrit writings to
such great extent is proof itself that they were not the original
authors of these works. They took over and appropriated much from
Buddhism that would appeal to the masses when they found it otherwise
impossible for them to sit in the saddle of the priesthood.” (p. 221)
(9)

Houston states that Brahminism (from the God Brahma, the first person
in the trinity), “claims to be founded upon the Vedas, the sacred
books of India, taken over by the Brahmins. They were not the creators
of the writings, although today they are the custodians, interpretors
and priests. They only attained this place after a bloody struggle
with the native races. Upon the suppression of Buddhism, a line of
apostles of Brahminism appeared, with a philosophy built upon the
peculiar mysic, ascetic, teachings of Buddha. A mass of Hindu legends
sprang up around them.” (p. 246) (10)

Houston continues:

“The Brahmins attempted to incorporate the pure worship of Buddha into
their religion by making him an incarnatin of Vishnu. As time went on
Brahmins added to and corrupted the Vedas to confirm their excessive
pretentions. Brahminism is full of elements foreign to the Aryas. It
worships gods that the did not bring to India and the traditions are
borrowed from the darker race.” (p.246) Houston emphasized the
activities of the people who brought Brahminism upon the Indian
Cushites. They punished theft by cutting of hands and feet. One who
defamed the Brahmins or the caste spirit they sought to force upon the
people had their tongue torn out, red hot irons thrust into their
mouth, or the lips cut off. (Antiquities of India, Barnett, p. 116,
122). Under their law, the husband could whip or kill his wife and
confiscate her property.”

Houston goes on further to explain that many of India’s ancient books
were of Black Kushite origins, however the religious writings were
corrupted by the invaders(or infiltrators, since they most likely they
did not invade India but took advantage of weaknesses and calamities
in order to infiltrate and occupy). For example, she quotes Dr.
Stvenson who points out that the Brahmins’ religion could not supplant
Buddhism completely, however many of the historical books were
“destroyed, revised and interpolated.” These changes brought about two
forms of the Veda writings, one pure and devotional and the other
entirely opposite. (p.247). (11)

The previous passages from Wonderful Ethiopians of the Ancient Cushite
Empire, by Drucilla Dunjee Houston, presents a clear idea of what the
invading barbarians brought and imposed on the Black people of Kushite
African origins as well as the Black Negroid-Australoid (Dravidian
Blacks also of African origin). These Blacks were the originators of
India’s magnificient civilizations long before the barbarians began to
move into India. Among the most odious philosophers introduced to
India by the aliens was the caste and “varna” or color consciousness
system of racial, color and caste stratification. This system was
based on the debasement of India’s original Black race. The system
originally began as a skin color based caste system, with the lightest
in skin color and closest in appearance to the invaders being at the
top of the scale (similar to the racist system in the U.S. and South
Africa), and the darkest being the Nagas and other indigenous Kushites
and other Blacks being at the bottom.

India’s Black Dalits or “Untouchables,” are outside of the caste
system. They are the original Black (Naga and other Kushitic types) of
India who spoke the Kushitic and Dravidian languages, both part of the
Afro-Asiatic language family which was first spoken by the Black race
of Eastern Africa and was later adopted by the Semites, in the same
manner that English is being adopted by people worldwide, and is
spoken by people worldwide as a primary language irrespective of race
or ethnicity. These African originated languages are spoken in one
form or another from West Africa all the way to Cambodia (where
ancient Cushitic Blacks settled in ancient times). India’s
Untouchables are the descendants of those who fought fierce battles
against the invaders and infiltrators and refused to join the racist
caste system, which was fused into religious teachings (as racism has
been fused into the bible and Christian teachings) by the invaders.
The untouchables were therefore regarded as enemies and even before,
they were lowered in status after a long series of wars which occurred
between them and the invaders. Disunity was the primary cause of their
being defeated (HEAR THIS PEOPLE). However, after years of suffering,
they were united after the Buddha Dharma was introduced to them. M.
Gopinath explains in his book, “Nagaloka: The Fractured History and
Forgotten Glory of the Bahujan Indians, (April, 1998, p.13):

Gopinath states that among the kingdoms and rulers established by the
Black Nagas were the Magadha Kingdom, ruled by Sisunag in Bihar, the
Magadha Kingdom which became an empire ruled by Bimbisara, the fifth
ruler of the Dynasty, Nanda, who killed King Bahananda of the Sisunaga
Dynasty in 413 B.C. by an adventurer called Nanda, who began the Nanda
Dynasty. In 322 B.C., Maurya Dynasty was founded. Emperor Asoka of the
Maurya Dynasty, (known worldwide as one of India’s greatest emperors),
became a Buddhist. He spread his rule throughout Asia, without having
to conquer the lands through warfare. He spread Buddhism and
eliminated the evil practices brought by the barbarians to India.
These non-Naga practices included drinking alcohol excessively,
gambling, sacrificing of animals and immoral behavior. The Naga
nations and the entire Naga empires enjoyed peace, prosperity and
progress after asoka made Buddhism the state religion. Due to this,
the Aryans began to fume, plot and infiltrate the Bhuddist religion
and organizations. By then, they had been reduced to a lower class,
while the Nagas had regained their rightful place in control of the
Naga’s lands and wealth. The Aryans were particularly angered by the
ban on animal sacrifices. Asoka allowed them to gain a few positions,
where they were treated fairly according to their performance. In due
time, however, they plotted a coup, overthrew the Naga Mauran Dynasty
and began what Gopinath states to be, “a bloodiest chapter in the
history of mankind,” (p.19) carried out by a Samavedhi Sung Brahmin
called Pushyamitra. They carried out a reign of terror on the
Naga-Buddhists which lasted for many centuries killing many thousands
of Naga-Buddhists, destroying their temples and turning them into
Aryan shrines for their own Gods. According to Gopinath, the
Brahminical genocide did not eliminate all the Naga-Bhuddist kings.
Many continued to rule a large part of India until the 1200’s A.D.
They refused to be tricked by the Aryans and stood as a challenge to
them. These final bulwalks of Naga resistance was finally crushed by
foreigners invited to defeat the Naga-rajas. The Buddhist monasteries
and religion was destroyed, and their kingdoms were taken over by the
invaders. The barbarians did not even allow the Naga-Buddhists to be
independant, or to earn a living, (sounds farmiliar, doesn’t it?).
They passed laws to prevent their commercial activities and
industriousness (reminds on of the schemes and laws passed against
braiding Black folks hair by folks who have blonde hair). The Nagas
became a stateless people in a few years after the above measures and
oppressive moves against them. The Aryans were able to separate many
of the Nagas into occupational groups (castes). A significant number
refused to join into the scheme and they became the “Untouchables,”
and lived separately from the invaders.

THE CONTINUED SUFFERING OF INDIA’S BLACK INDIGENOUS MAJORITY AND BLACK
TRIBAL PEOPLE

The history of the Glorious Black Naga People of India is a sad one
indeed, particularly after the ursurping of power and control by the
barbarian invaders who many believe and rightly know are in no way
indigenous to the Indian subcontinent, but migrated from Russia and
parts of North-Eastern Europe. Still, knowing the history of one of
the worlds oldest civilized people, the Kushite branch of the Black
race, to which the Nagas belong, should be a great honor to Blacks
worldwide, for it was the Kushites who began the entire process of
civilization on planet earth. The Naga People of India belong to a
large family of Blacks whose origins are in East Africa and who spread
to West Africa, East Asia and the Indian Ocean-Pacific region. In
fact, there are still Blacks in both East and West Africa who use the
title “Naga” as their primary name. or use words derived from it.
Examples of the name “Naga” includes the Naga Tribe of Sudan and East
Africa, the ago-Mina of West Africa and Brazil, the Nubians, the Nuers
and Nuba of Sudan, the ugamarta of West Africa. All these groups are
of Kushitic origins and are of the same racial and ethnic lineage as
the Nagas (tribals, Black Dalits and others) of India, the Blacks of
South-East Asia, and those of some parts of the South Pacific and
Melanesia. It is only a matter of time before all these
Blacks…perhaps one 800 to one billion of Kushitic origins, rise up
and regain their former glory as the greatest people the world has
ever known. Their present suffering and oppression in India and
throughout the world should be an incentive to take the steps
necessary to rise up.

IT CAN BE SAID FURTHER, THAT ALL BLACKS ALIVE TODAY ARE BASICALLY OF
KUSHITIC AND NUBIAN ORIGINS,SINCE IT WAS FROM SUDAN (ANCIENT KUSH)
THAT THE GREAT MIGRATIONS OF BLACKS AND THE SPREAD OF BLACK
CIVILIZATION BEGAN.

In regards to the suffering of the Black Nagas of India, V.T.
Rajshekar explains, that the Dalits (which includes the Naga Tribes)
are primarily agricultural workers on whose backs the agricul- tural
system rests. Yet, the Dalits are also slum dwellers outside the major
cities, where they are segregated, just as they are in the rural
villages. Untouchables are prevented from marrying outside of their
caste and mixed dining is not allowed. To the Brahmin of Hindus at the
upper levels of the caste system, the native Black Indians were
regarded as “untouchables,” “unseeables,” “unapproachables,”
“unthinkables.” To touch, see, approach, think or dream of an
untouchable was considered an abomination by the Aryan or Hindu. This
sanctified racist caste system was maintained by making sure the
Blacks were disarmed (you all get that folks!!!! when people come
offering you food for your guns you better JUST SAY NO!!!). In fact,
most of the native Indians were disarmed so that they had no effective
means of fighting back and eliminating the racist system. The Blacks
were forced to live on the carcases of dead animals. Black Dalit women
were turned into prostitutes. They were forced to wear rags and to
>arry dead animals and perform the worse types of manual labor. (“The

Black untouchables of India,” African Presence in Early Asia,
Transaction Publishers, New Bruinswich, NJ: 1993, p. 237). (15)

Rajshekar states that the caste system as explained in the Rig Vedas
and Aryan racism as practiced in modern India against India’s original
and aboriginal Black inhabitants has been the greatest contributor to
misery in the world.

 

http://www.indiadivine.org/audarya/hinduism-forum/215623-ancient-kushite-empire-india.html


NDC-OHCHR-Nepal launch observation on the Untouchability Bill

24/12/2010

Wednesday, 8 December 2010,

We are concerned over the process of drafting and submission of the Bill: NDC, OHCHR-Nepal

Kathmandu – On the occasion of the Human Rights Day, the National Dalit Commission of Nepal (NDC) and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in Nepal (OHCHR-Nepal) released today an analysis of the draft Caste-based Discrimination and Untouchability Crime Elimination and Punishment Act, entitled, “NDC and OHCHR-Nepal Observations on the Untouchability Bill”.

With this document, the NDC and OHCHR-Nepal, make an assessment of the draft bill and offer a set of recommendations to the Legislative-Parliament and other relevant actors to ensure consistency of the proposed bill with national and international human rights standards.

Non-discrimination and equality are core human rights principles and Nepal is a state party to the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination. The Convention obliges the Government inter alia, to prohibit discrimination based on descent, including caste-based discrimination. The Interim Constitution of Nepal and other legislation also prohibit any discrimination based on caste and untouchability. The draft bill should fill the gaps of the current legislation to ensure effective prosecution of criminal offense based on caste-based discrimination and untouchability and compensation for the victims. In particular, it should be revised to incorporate appropriate penalties and statutes of limitations corresponding to the seriousness of each offence, an essential way to ensure the right to an effective remedy for the victims.

“We welcome the submission of the draft bill on Caste-based Discrimination and Untouchability Crime Elimination and Punishment to the Legislature-Parliament as a very positive step forward which offers an opportunity to make Nepali legislation consistent with international standards,” stated in a joint press statement released today by NDC and OHCHR-Nepal, adding, “if the current gaps are corrected, the proposed law could become a key tool to curb the deep-rooted practice of castebased discrimination and practices of untouchability in Nepal.”

“We insist however that the process of drafting and submission of the Bill makes the object of meaningful consultations with key stakeholders and the general public,” said Bijul Kumar Biswakarma, the chairperson of NDC, and Anthony Cardon, Officerin- Charge of OHCHR-Nepal, adding, “the NDC and OHCHR-Nepal urge the Legislature-Parliament and the Government of Nepal to make public the content of the draft bill to seek views from concerned stakeholders and to incorporate their concerns and recommendations in the draft Bill”.

http://www.reliefweb.int/rw/rwb.nsf/db900sid/EGUA-8BYNY4?OpenDocument


Recasting Hinduism for the 21st century

24/12/2010

It is important that Hindus take the lead in acknowledging the damage that caste discrimination does and resolving to tackle it

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India Dalit HinduDalits at the National Conference of Dalits in New Delhi. Photograph: Manish Swarup/APCaste has become the convenient “hook” to hang the Hinduism portrait since Hinduism, that “rolling caravan of conceptual spaces”, is too complex a religion/way of life for the “people of the book” who have reigned supreme the past two millennia. Unfortunately, caste being the complex conundrum that it is, Hinduism almost always is seen through the prism of caste. 

In a newly published report, the Hindu American Foundation tackles the issue of caste discrimination, and of the immediate and urgent need for Hindus to acknowledge that caste is not an intrinsic part of Hinduism; that continuing caste-based discrimination is a major human rights problem; and only Hindus, through reform movements, through an activist agenda, and through education can rid Hindu society of the scourge of caste-based discrimination.

While there will be naysayers in the Hindu community, who wish to get into their bunkers and fight a rearguard battle to “defend” Hinduism from what they see as a concerted campaign of vilification by Christian missionaries, Muslim fundamentalists, Marxist Hindu haters, and a global-capitalist-western hegemony, it is important that Hindus bell the casteist cat themselves. In this regard, the HAF report points out that caste-based discrimination is a serious human rights issue in the Indian subcontinent, and that over 160 million people, whom the Indian government categorises as “scheduled castes” (SCs), suffer from discrimination by not only a variety of Hindu caste groups but even by “upper caste” Christians and Muslims after they have converted to Christianity or Islam.

The Indian constitution, whose chief architect, BR Ambedkar, was himself a member of the scheduled castes, outlaws “untouchability” – the act of segregating and ostracising a social group by literally prohibiting physical contact with members of the SCs. Alas, India is hobbled by a weak and sometimes dysfunctional judicial system, and therefore acts of discrimination against the SCs (or Dalits, as many of them prefer to call themselves) either go unpunished or ignored.

Other lawlessness in India goes unpunished but the challenge of dealing with caste-based discrimination has been the most disheartening. This is especially so in rural areas where caste dynamics continues to play havoc. In 2008, for example, according to the Indian government, there were 33,615 human rights violations of various types – from the denial of entry into temples to denial of service in wayside restaurants, and from bonded labour to the exploitation of women.

HAF’s report therefore begins with an important point: that Hindus must acknowledge that caste arose in Hindu society, that some Hindu texts and traditions justify a birth-based hierarchy and caste bias, and that it has survived despite considerable attempts by Hindus to curtail it. It notes that caste-based discrimination represents a failure of Hindu society “to live up to its essential spiritual teachings,” that divinity is inherent in all beings, and that caste is not an intrinsic part of Hinduism.

Sure, untouchability is practiced not just by Hindus in India and Nepal but by non-Hindus in Yemen, Japan, Korea, France, Somalia, and Tibet. But the sheer number of people who are discriminated against in India makes this a uniquely Indian and Hindu problem. Fishing in India’s troubled waters are therefore missionaries who for long have sought to make India Christian, and the left/Marxist forces in India who see only Hinduism as a problem but not religion per se. In recent decades, and especially after George W Bush became president, there was a surge in monies funneled into India for planting churches and converting Hindus. Organisations like the Dalit Freedom Network, led by and catering to mostly Christians, have gone on overdrive and sought to categorise SCs as non-Hindus and therefore arguing that they are not converting Hindus to Christianity.

HAF’s report, a first of its kind by a modern Hindu advocacy group, provides readers a handy but grand sweep of the problem of caste – from its origins to its role in the past and at present, its use and abuse, and reform movements from the earliest by the likes of Basaveshwara to the great 19th- and 20th-century reform movements like the Arya Samajmovement, and reformers like Jyotiba PhuleNarayana GuruMahatma Gandhi, and others.

Noting that there are defenders of the caste system, not just the curmudgeon and cruel among Hindus, but the likes of Voltaire and Diderot who fought against the monotheistic intolerance of Christians and Muslims, to sociologists like Louis Dumont who argued that the “distribution of functions leads to exchanges”, to the great Indophile,Alain Daniélou who argued that caste does not equate to “racist inequality but … a natural ordering of diversity,” the HAF report argues that a birth-based hierarchy is unacceptable, that inequities against and the abuse of the Dalits/SCs is a human rights issue, and that the solution to this social ill is available within Hindu sacred texts themselves, and that Hindus should be at the forefront of putting an end to the system of birth-based hierarchy as well as taking the lead in energising the Dalit community to fight discrimination.

As the British seek to draft a new bill of rights, and from what one hears,equate caste with racism, similar to what was sought at the United Nations Durban conference on racism and racial discrimination, as western Europe and US-based missionary groups ratchet up the calls for actions and sanctions against India, and as we move into a new era of global interaction, it is time for Hindus to act.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/belief/2010/dec/21/india-hindu-dalit


Upper castes in remote area of Uttar Pradesh object to Angrezi Devi

05/12/2010

A Dalit-dominated hamlet in remote area of Uttar Pradesh (UP) is on the radar of top officials of the Mayawati administration nowadays. At the crux of their interest is a new goddess ‘Angrezi Devi’.

Construction of a temple consecrated to this goddess of English is in full swing in Jang Bahadur Ganj village of Lakhimpur Kheri district. But tension has already begun to simmer over this unique campaign to popularise English and modern education among Dalits. Upper castes feel this is the first step towards conversion of Dalits to Christianity. They also feel worshipping ‘Angrezi Devi’ is an insult to Hindu goddesses.

“Those who are opposing the ‘Angrezi Devi’ temple are either ignorant or are acting at the behest of some vested interests,” says renowned writer on Dalit issues, Dr Chandrabhan Prasad, who is the driving force behind the ingenious initiative. “English education is the primary need of Dalits. We are working on Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar’s inspiration,” he said.

A three-feet high statue of the goddess of English is ready for installation. The statue is designed on the lines of New York’s Statue of Liberty. It holds aloft a pen in one hand and a copy of the Indian Constitution in the other.

But even as Dalits of Jang Bahadur Ganj toil day and night for the proposed inauguration of the new temple by month-end, top officials in Lucknow are a worried lot. “We have been getting reports of tension between Dalits and upper castes over this temple… we only hope this issue doesn’t flare up,” a senior police official said. State intelligence agencies, he added, were keeping a close eye on the situation.

“The upper castes feel this is only a ruse to convert Dalits to Christianity,” he said, adding that a number of people had apprised senior district officials of their objections. “They also see the temple as an attempt to grab land,” the official said.

Because of its Dalit dimension, the “Angrezi Devi” issue is highly sensitive for the Mayawati government. So, no senior official is willing to go on record about the controversy.

Meanwhile, students of the Nalanda Shiksha Niketan, a local Dalit school, have even written a prayer to worship the goddess in English.

The structure of the temple, being built on about 800 square feet of land, is almost complete. Prasad says the temple walls would be adorned with scientific formulae, famous quotes and gems of knowledge from a variety of subjects. However, what remains to be seen is whether this new temple spreads the light of knowledge or the flames of caste conflict.

http://www.dnaindia.com/mumbai/report_upper-castes-in-remote-area-of-uttar-pradesh-object-to-angrezi-devi_1464102


DALIT CHRISTIAN DEMANDS

29/11/2010

Dalit Christians belong to the ancient indigenous people of the land of India and for the past fifty nine years they were struggling for their basic right to live as human beings.Dalit Christians are fighting for their legitimate rights and privileges provided for the Dalits by the Constitution of India.
The Constitution of India has provided the Dalits with compensatory discrimination or affirmative action, but since 1950 the Government of India has deprived Christian Dalits of such rights.
The majority of Dalit Christians are
Economically poor,
Educationally backward,
Politically powerless   and
Socially outcaste.
For this reason the Dalit Christians demand that the Indian Government restore their legitimate rights and cease to discriminate against them on grounds of religion.
Commissions
Elayaperumal Commission (1969): Report of the Elayaperumal Commission in Para 32 says “The Committee found during tours that all Scheduled Castes who got themselves converted to religions other than Hinduism should be given all concessions which are available to Scheduled Castes. This is because the Committee found during tours that they suffer from the same disabilities which the Scheduled Castes suffer.”
Mandal Commission (1980): The Mandal Commission in 1980 supported that Scheduled Castes converted to Christianity be treated as Scheduled Caste as their conversion did not change the conditions of socially, economically and educationally.
Misra Commission (2004): Justice Misra, a former chief justice of India, has accepted the demand raised by Dalit Christians for 59 years urging the Government not to discriminate against them on grounds of their religion, but to once again extend to them the political, economic and development privileges accorded to all Dalits by the Constitution of India when it was signed into law on 26th January 1950. These rights were taken away brutally by the Presidential Order of 1950 which strengthened the rightwing fundamentalist religious lobby and which continues to constitute a slur on the Secular foundations of the Indian Nation. The commission has accepted that caste transcends religion and caste discrimination is present in all religious communities.
Inclusion in the Scheduled Castes
Dalit Christians should be accorded the same reservation and welfare benefits that are granted to the Scheduled Castes professing the Hindu, Sikh, and Neo-Buddhist religions under the Constitution (Scheduled Castes) Order 1950 as, amended in 1956 and 1990. The Dalit Christians should be given the Scheduled Caste status and privileges so that they can enjoy the same political rights and socio-economic benefits as all other Scheduled Castes.
Definition of the Scheduled Caste
The expression ‘Scheduled Castes’ was used for those people who were kept outside the fourfold Varna (caste) system, and were called Avarnas (casteless). They were called by different names such as: Chandalas, Panchamas or Untouchables.  The term “Scheduled Caste” was used by the British Government to designate all castes and classes previously covered under the term “Depressed Classes”. Officially this word was embodied in Section 305 of the Government of India Act, 1935, Later the expression was included in the Government of India (Scheduled Castes) Order, 1936.
The Indian Constitution, Article 366
“Scheduled Caste”   means such castes, races or tribes or parts of or groups within such castes, races or tribes as are deemed under article 341 to be Scheduled Castes for the purposes of this Constitution.
The Indian Constitution, on the basis of its Article 341 (1) only empowers the President of India to specify the castes, races or tribes or parts or groups within castes that can be deemed to be Scheduled Castes.  It is then the role of Parliament to make law concerning the groups thus designated.
Article 341, Scheduled Castes
The President may with respect to any State or Union territory, and where it is a State, after consultation with the Governor thereof, by public notification, specify the castes, races or tribes or parts of or groups within castes, races or tribes which shall for the purposes of this Constitution be deemed to be Scheduled Castes in relation to that State or Union territory, as the case may be.
In 1950, while exercising the powers conferred on him in Article 341 (1), the President of India promulgated an order known as The Constitution (Scheduled Castes) Order, 1950. This Order of 1950 continued to use the same list used in the Government of India (Scheduled Castes) Order of 1936.  The third paragraph of the 1950 Order reads:-
Notwithstanding anything contained in paragraph 2, No person who professes a religion different from Hindu shall be deemed to be a member of a Scheduled Caste.
This third Paragraph was amended in 1956 and in 1990 in favor of Sikh and Buddhist Dalits.
Amendment of 1956 in favor of ‘Dalit SIKHS’
Following agitation by Master Tara Singh, the Constitution (Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes) Orders (Amendment) Act, providing for inclusion of Dalit Sikhs in the list of the Scheduled Castes, was passed in 1956. It said:-
“Notwithstanding anything contained in Para 2, No person who professes a religion different from the Hindu or Sikh religion shall be deemed to be a member of a Scheduled Caste.”
Amendment of 1956 in favor of ‘Dalit Buddhists ‘
In May 1990, to commemerate the centenary of the birth of Dr. Ambedkar, Prime Minister V.P.Singh brought Dalits who converted to Buddhism into the list of Scheduled Castes. He made representations to Parliament that this change of religion, from Hindu to Buddhist, had not altered their social, economic or educational conditions.  The same should be acknowledged in the case of Dalits who become Christians.
“Notwithstanding anything contained in Para 2, No person who professes a religion different from the Hindu, the Sikh or the Buddhist religion shall be deemed to be a member of a Scheduled Caste.”
Justification
The allegation not to give Scheduled Caste status to Dalit Christians on the ground that Christianity does not have caste, they why Scheduled Caste status given to those Scheduled Caste origins to Sikhism and Buddhism as both the religions does not have caste.
On the other hand, if reservation for only those religions that practices castes then Dalit Christians also deserve it because they suffer caste stigma among Indian society.
Dalit Christians suffer caste oppressed before and after their conversion.They suffer Religious persecution from religious fanatics and constitutional denial of their statutory from Presidential SC/ST order 1950.
Dalit Christians seeking to be included in Scheduled Caste status is the constitution, birth and fundamental rights.
Conclusion
Today Dalit Christians are asking only for their fundamental rights.Dalit Christians belong to the same caste and undergo the same age-old suffering and oppression as other Dalits.Dalit Christians live under the same system of oppression, deprived of   justice and human dignity.
The economic condition of Dalit converts is in no way different from that of their counterparts – the Dalits who are not converts.Dalit Christians suffer from a high incidence of atrocities and economic and social disabilities owing to the government’s reluctance to modify its discriminatory policy on   reservation.
Christians feel that this religion-based discrimination is in violation of Article 15 (1) and contravenes the provisions of Article 15 (4) of the Constitution of India. Constitutional principles prohibit discrimination on the grounds of religion, race, caste, sex or place of birth.
At stake is the fate of 19 million Dalit Christians, who form 70% of the Indian Christians.  In the whole country, Indian Christians total 25 million.  They are not asking for any expansion of the Scheduled Caste list or any increase in the reservation quota. They only want to be included in the present list.  This can be done by introducing a new bill in Parliament.
Reference
1. www.dalitchristians.com/Html/demands.htm
2. M. Madhu Chandra – 16 July, 2007 – Countercurrents.org
3. Rangnath Commission Report tabled in Parliament, ummid.com & Agencies
4.www.ummid.com/news/December/19.12.2009/christian_groups_demand_im        plementation_misra_report.htm
Joseph.P
Executive Director
THACRA SOCIAL SERVICE ORGANISATION
Chennai – Tamil Nadu – South India

 Courtesy: http://eparinay.com/blog/2010/08/03/dalit-christian-demands/