Gujarat’s well-known Dalit rights organization, Navsarjan Trust, is holding an agitation on July 15, 2017 under the banner Mission 2047, exhorting authorities to declare India untouchability free by 2047. Details:
It is true; India can take pride for the development, progress and international trade it has been able to achieve post-independence. But it is equally true that its failure to abolish Untouchability is its shame. Britain is preparing to adopt Anti-Caste discrimination law on its soil to avoid its own embarrassment. Both ‘development’ and ‘progress’ in absence of equality where its citizens are treated as sub-human can only be hollow and hypocrite.
During his meeting with Gandhi in 1931 at Mani Bhuvan in Mumbai, Dr. Ambedkar had asked Gandhi: You do insist on wearing Khadi as a pre-condition to join the Congress; Why don’t you insist non-practice of Untouchability as a pre-condition for Congress membership? Gandhi had no answer. No Political party in India too has an answer to this question today.
During its 70-years independence, India has never published a white paper on its progress on Untouchability eradication. Dalit development has confined to payment of monetary compensation after the atrocity and meagre welfare schemes. Dalit children are seated separately in schools in Gujarat as elsewhere in the country. Untouchability is practiced with Dalit Panchayat members. Gujarat Government’s recent move to promote the most educated girl in the village to hoist national flag on Independence Day is nothing but an act to cover its failure to ensure that Dalit Sarpanch can hoist the tricolor without social tension.
Never ever in the history Gujarat has followed the norm ‘proportion to population financial resources allocation’ to the Scheduled Caste sub-plan amidst the deafening silence of the Dalit MLA and MP elected on the reserved seats. This disproportionate allocation costing hundreds of crores of rupees for Dalits applies to Union budget too. The Dalit elected representatives assume their community loyalty limited to shouting ‘Jay Bhim’ on the floor of the house and singing praises for their political party.
Political myth is created that with ‘Dalit’ President of India, all Dalit problems will come to an end. What can be a bigger shame than to label the President of India as ‘Dalit’? To highlight ‘Ram’ in Presidential candidate name is nothing but a childish act and a conspiracy to diminish Ambedkar Ideology.
For Dalits, as Indian citizen, the question challenges their dignified existence: Will India be able to liberate itself from Untouchability, in 2047 when it will celebrate 100 years of its independence?
Around the above question, looking ahead at next 30 years, a public meeting is organized to launch the agitation: Agitation for Untouchability Free India: Mission 2047, with following details.
- Date of Public meeting: 15th July 2017
- Time: 12.00 noon
- Venue: Dalit Shakti Kendra, village: Nani Devti, Sanand-Bavla Road, Sanand taluka, Ahmedabad district.
- Chief Guest: Hon. Prakash Ambedkar
- Symbol: Saucer and cup (10 x 5.5 feet). A cultural symbol of acceptance as equals
- Attendees: Leaders of about 1000 Gujarat villages at their own expense.
- Invitees: All the MLA and MP of Gujarat.
- Slogan: Ramnam Satya chhe; Abhadchhet hakikat chhe (Ramnam is Truth; Untouchability is a fact)
- Memorandum: To the Chief Minister of Gujarat on ‘Supda’ asking him to declare one village of Gujarat as Untouchability-Free, in his Independent day address, post hoisting national flag. The same memorandum will be given to Congress chief of Gujarat on paper.
Organizer: Navsarjan Trust.