India Committee of the Netherlands
+++ In solidarity with the oppressed in India +++


DALITS

Dalits - Information
UN Expert Report: India must act on access to adequate housing for Dalits
IDSN, Feb 3, 2017
The UN Special Rapporteur on the right to adequate housing, Leilani Farha, has released a report on housing in India. The report draws attention to the alarming state of Dalit houses and the need for Government action to improve housing and end discrimination. »
India blocks funding for IDSN member Navsarjan
IDSN, Jan 6, 2017
In the latest of a series of blocks on foreign funding to human rights NGOs, the Indian Government has revoked the foreign funding (FCRA) license from Dalit rights NGO Navsarjan Trust. The revocation of the license means that Navsarjan can no longer receive funding from foreign donors and the organisation has had to ask its 80 staff to resign. »
Fabric of Slavery: Large-scale child slavery in Indian spinning mills making yarn for international garment brands
press release ICN, Dec 21, 2016
A new ICN report shows that modern slavery is found in more than 90% of the spinning mills in South India. Young girls and women - in majority Dalit - are enslaved by employers who withhold their wages and lock them up in hostels. »
Forced Labour in the Textile and Garment Sector in Tamil Nadu, South India - Strategies for Redress
Corporate Accountability Research, Dec 2016
Report about the grievances of young women, predominantly from disadvantaged Dalit communities, who are recruited from remote rural villages to work in textile mills and garment factories in Tamil Nadu. Research refers to ICN and SOMO reports. »
European Parliament report calls for EU policy on caste discrimination
IDSN, Dec 21, 2016
In its “Annual Report on human rights and democracy in the world and the European Union’s policy on the matter” the European Parliament raises deep concern over grave violations of Dalit human rights. »
(In)Equality in Aid discussed at the 9th session of the Forum on Minority Issues
IDSN, Nov 29, 2016
The 9th session of the Forum on Minority Issues (the Forum) was held last week, on 24 and 25 November 2016, focusing on the situation of minorities in humanitarian crises. »
IDSN at the CERD consultation with civil society: joining hands to end racial discrimination
IDSN, Nov 25, 2016
CERD held a consultation with civil society organisations. It aimed to reflect on how the International Convention on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination helped make a difference in combatting racial discrimination. »
Will SDGs “leave no one behind” without a disaggregated data on caste-based discrimination?
IDSN, Nov 21, 2016
In 2015, Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were adopted by world leaders to guide global development agendas for the next 15 years. Yet, to date, the indicators measuring the achievement of the SDGs have not been finalised. »
A review: US State Department Report on human rights in India 2015
IDSN, Oct 6, 2016
The US State Department published its Report 2015 on human rights practices in India, which provides a comprehensive overview of the human rights situation in the country. The report covers areas of deprivation of life, detention, torture, etc. »
Caste at the Human Rights Council’s 33 session
IDSN, Sep 15, 2016
The United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC) commenced its 33rd session on 13 September. This year the report of the Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, including its causes and consequences has a thematic focus on debt bondage. »
Caste discrimination in the United Kingdom
IDSN, Sep 7, 2016
On 28 August 2016, as a part of the regular review process, CERD published its concluding observations to the UK. The Committee expressed its concern that ‘several provisions of the Equality Act 2010 have not yet been brought into legal effect, including Section 9(5)(a) on caste-based discrimination’. »
Modi and India’s Dalits
The New York Times, Aug 3, 2016
A protest in the Indian state of Gujarat’s largest city, Ahmedabad, on Sunday by thousands of Dalits — members of India’s lowest castes — has brought to a head the contradiction between Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s promise of economic opportunity for all and a politics of division driven by right-wing Hindu ideology. »
Millions of Dalit Muslims face caste discrimination
IDSN, Jun 30, 2016
An estimated 100 million or more “Dalit Muslims” live in India. Activists and social scientists argue that affirmative action policies for ‘scheduled castes’ should also apply to this group. »
MEPs make caste appeal to EU foreign policy chief
IDSN, Jun 30, 2016
A cross-party group of Members of the European Parliament have asked the EU’s foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, to ensure that EU action to address caste discrimination is prioritised at the highest levels. »
Breaking down barriers to justice for Dalit women
Sisters for Change, Jun 28, 2016
A new report released on 24 June by Sisters for Change and Karnataka Dalit Mahila Vedike (KDMV) turns a spotlight on the violence faced by rural Dalit women and girls in 8 districts of North West Karnataka, Southern India. »
Numerous legal instruments exist to address caste atrocities, but utter failure in implemention
Counterview, Jun 14, 2016
As more Dalits assert our rights and try to engage with government services and grants we see a corresponding increase in caste atrocities against our communities. Simple assertions like voting, getting an education, and obtaining legal services can all end in brutal physical violence. »
Infamous NGO Committee excludes human rights defenders from the UN
IDSN, Jun 1, 2016
For the 18th time since 2008, the Committee on NGOs has deferred IDSN’s application – the longest pending one of its kind – for UN ECOSOC consultative status. Two more questions from India have yet again delayed the process. »
IDSN cited as example of obstruction against NGOs
IDSN, May 25, 2016
More than 230 NGOs have called on members of the UN’s Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) to reform the practice of the Committee of NGOs that prevents certain human rights organisations – including IDSN – from associating freely with the UN. »
India: Stop Treating Critics As Criminals
Human Rights Watch, May 24, 2016
The Indian authorities routinely use vaguely worded, overly broad laws as political tools to silence and harass critics, Human Rights Watch said in a new report released today. The government should repeal or amend laws that are used to criminalize peaceful expression. »
HRW urges India to stop treating critics as criminals
IDSN, May 24, 2016
A new report by Human Rights Watch examines how criminal law is used to limit peaceful expression in India, stifle political dissent and target religious minorities and marginalised communities, including Dalits. »
Global conference urged to discuss rights of 300 million Dalit and indigenous women
IDSN, May 11, 2016
IWGIA and IDSN call on the participants in the Women Deliver Conference in Copenhagen to address discrimination against hundreds of millions of Dalit and indigenous women. »
UN Special Rapporteur criticises India’s FCRA
IDSN, May 9, 2016
A controversial piece of Indian legislation could be used to silence organisations that criticize the government. It contravenes the country’s international human rights obligations, a UN expert says. »
UN expert: India should legislate against housing discrimination
IDSN, Apr 28, 2016
The UN Special Rapporteur on the right to adequate housing has completed a 12-day visit to India during which she expressed concern about India’s legacy of discrimination against Dalits and other marginalised groups. »
Global celebrations as ‘Babasaheb’ turns 125
IDSN, Apr 14, 2016
Today is the 125th anniversary of the birth of the legendary Dalit icon, Dr. B.R. Ambedkar. The event is marked across the world, although the legacy of this great man means different things to different people. »
Rohith suicide case continues to stir India
IDSN, Apr 13, 2016
Almost three months have passed since the tragic suicide of Dalit PhD-student Rohith Vemula, but his untimely death continues to attract national and international attention. »
Bhim Yatra gives hope to manual scavengers
IDSN, Apr 12, 2016
For the past four months, activists have criss-crossed India to protest against manual scavenging. Their march – the Bhim Yatra – concludes in New Delhi tomorrow, on the eve of the 125th birthday of the great Dalit leader, Dr Ambedkar. »
IDSN members lobby global community
IDSN, Apr 7, 2016
The third week of March 2016 was an eventful one for IDSN. The network’s highest body assembled in Geneva, the UN Special Rapporteur on Minority Issues presented a ground-breaking report on caste discrimination, and IDSN members met a number of high-ranking UN officials. »
UN Deputy High Commissioner gravely concerned about caste discrimination
IDSN, Mar 30, 2016
During the 31st Session of the UN Human Rights Council, Dalit human rights campaigners met the high-ranking UN human rights official, Kate Gilmore. »
HRW: EU should encourage India to protect Dalits
IDSN, Mar 30, 2016
On the eve of today’s EU-India Summit, Human Rights Watch has written a letter to the EU addressing numerous key human rights issues. These include the failure of the Indian government to protect the country’s Dalit population. »
ILO asks Indian Government to react to statement by ITUC on forced labour in textile industry
ICN, Mar 2016
ILO’s Committee of Experts on the Application on Conventions and Recommendations has requested the Indian government to react to observations by the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and the Garment Labour Union (GLU) about forced labour and other labour rights violations in the textile industry in Tamil Nadu affecting a large number of young women employed in spinning mills. »
Indian budget fails to deliver for Dalits
IDSN, Mar 9, 2016
The 2016 budget of the Government of India allocates less than half of the required amount to the country’s Dalit and Adivasi populations. »
UN expert calls on states to end caste discrimination
IDSN, Mar 17, 2016
New report on caste discrimination by UN Special Rapporteur constitutes milestone, Human Rights Watch, MRG and IDSN say in joint press release. »
The women who refuse to do India's dirtiest job
The Guardian, Mar 1, 2016
"Every morning I would take a broom and tin plate to the homes of the upper caste thakurs to pick up their faeces. I would collect the waste in a cane basket and later throw it in a dumping ground outside the village."
As you watch a confident Ranikumari Khokar educate a group of boys and girls on how to file a police case, it is hard to imagine that this 21-year-old spent most of her adolescence working as a scavenger. »
Dalit student suicide – the last drop in a cauldron of injustice
IDSN, Jan 26, 2016
The suicide of 26 year-old Indian PHD student, Rohith Vemula, is both a human tragedy and a symbol of centuries of systemic abuse and injustice metered out at India’s Dalits. “My birth is my fatal accident,” writes Rohith Vemula in his suicide note. This notion rings true for far too many Dalits in India, destined for discrimination from birth. »
Dalit student suicide: University missed warning signals
The Hindu, Jan 19, 2016
Rohith Vemula, the Dalit research scholar, who killed himself on Sunday, had sent warning signals long before taking the drastic step.
In a letter dated December 18, 2015 that bordered on a suicide note, he had asked the university authorities to offer “euthanasia” for him and other research scholars. »
Dalits fight for a fair share of the budget in India
IDSN, Jan 13, 2016
Following the shocking 2015 60% budget cuts on funds for Dalit and Adivasi welfare in India The National Coalition on SCP TSP Legislation (NACSTL), working to safeguard the economic rights of Dalits and Adivasis in India, has taken part in pre-budget consultations with the Finance Ministry. »
Milestone act amending India’s caste atrocity legislation passed
IDSN, Jan 4, 2016
In a victory for the Dalit movement in India and for all committed to justice and equality, a historic act amending the ‘Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) legislation has been passed by the upper house of parliament December 21st 2015, after the lower house passed it in August, 2015. »
Report: Atrocities against Dalits rising, access to justice is not
IDSN, Dec 18, 2015
Violence and atrocities against Dalits are rising in India and there is an urgent need to step up efforts to ensure justice for victims, finds a new report on access to justice released by the National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights (NCDHR), supported by Christian Aid and the European Union. »
Series of events held highlighting the situation of Dalits in India
IDSN, Dec 14, 2015
The National Confederation of Dalit Adivasi Organisations (NACDAOR) in collaboration with various partners have organized a series of events in October-December to highlight atrocities against Dalits, violence against Dalit women, the rights of Dalit children and the impact of climate change respectively as well as a national gathering of Dalit and Adivasi organisations. »
Schools of dishonour: Dalit children continue to bear the brunt of untouchability
The Hindu, Nov 28, 2015
When Sandeep reached his school in village Bedhua in Pratapgarh, Uttar Pradesh, in March 2015, the carcass of a dead dog lay rotting on the school grounds. The school cleaner was on leave. His headmistress told Sandeep to carry and dispose of the festering body of the dog outside the school campus. »
Report: Dalits hit disproportionately hard by 2015 flooding in India, no relief in sight
IDSN, Dec 3, 2015
An assessment report of the situation in Tamil Nadu following devastating floods on 9 November, 2015, finds that Dalit households are the main victims of the flood and are not receiving relief from the Government, despite non-Dalits having received such relief. »
Caste featured strongly at the 50th anniversary of the UN anti-racism convention
IDSN, Dec 2, 2015
Statements by the International Movement Against all forms of Discrimination and Racism (IMADR) and International Dalit Solidarity Network (IDSN) brought caste discrimination to the fore as the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination celebrated the ICERD convention’s 50th anniversary on the 26th November. »
UN Minority Forum: Dalit rights defenders deliver statements on shocking lack of justice for Dalits
IDSN, Dec 2, 2015
Three Dalit human rights defenders spoke at the UN Forum on Minority Issues. Durga Sob, from Nepal, and Manjula Pradeep and Ramesh Nathan from India, delivered strong statements on the dismal state of access to justice for Dalits and the mistreatment of Dalits in the criminal justice system. »
Caste violence in India rises as Dalits assert their rights
IDSN, Nov 9, 2015
Increasing Dalit rights assertions in India have unleashed a wave of backlash violence and abuse against Dalits. Official National crime statistics in India show a 19% rise in crimes against Dalits including violence, rape and murder committed by dominant caste members. »
Dalit singer arrested and film on caste refused clearance – the right to expression curtailed in India
IDSN, Nov 9, 2015
New incidents add to the concerns on fresh attempts to limit freedom of expression in India. A Dalit folk singer has been arrested and kept in custody and charged with sedition solely on the grounds of singing songs with a message to close down state owned liquor stores. »
Nepal – UN Members deeply concerned about caste discrimination and untouchability
IDSN, Nov 5, 2015
Seventeen United Nations member states raised their concerns and recommendations on caste discrimination at the United Nations Periodic Review of Nepal, urging the Government, in particular, to ensure effective implementation of the Caste-Based Discrimination and Untouchability Act of 2011. »
Out Damn Caste
Outlook, Oct 23, 2015
2 Dalit children, aged 9 months and 2.5 years, were cold-bloodedly burnt to death. »
Stand up for Dalit rights at the UN SDG Summit 2015
IDSN, Sep 22, 2015
A series of events including a protest rally are being organised at the UN summit on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) from 22-26th September in New York, by the Asia Dalit Rights Forum (ADRF) and other Dalit rights networks. The events culminate in a demonstration on the 26th September at Dag Hammarskjöld Plaza in NYC. »
Nepal Dalits demand inclusion as draft constitution goes to vote
IDSN, Sep 16, 2015
Despite political chaos and widespread dissatisfaction with the draft constitution, voting on the constitution, part by part, is taking place this week. The constitution being put to a vote lacks crucial text on inclusion of Dalits and other marginalized groups that had been previously agreed by both the Constituent Assembly (CA) committees. »
Here's proof that poor get gallows, rich mostly escape
Times of India, Jul 21, 2015
A first of its kind study, which has analyzed data from interviews with 373 death row convicts over a 15-year period, has found three-fourths of those given the death penalty belonged to backward classes, religious minorities and 75% were from economically weaker sections. »
Dalit and Adivasi women’s march for self-respect meets violence, injustice and police negligence
IDSN, Jul 2, 2015
Women being beaten, raped, stripped naked and paraded through their villages and a rape case as barbaric as the 2012 Nirbhaya case. These and a whole host of other atrocities were what the women marching for self-respect, and to end violence against Dalit and Adivasi women in the state of Odisha, India, came across on their path to justice. »
IDSN UN side-event calls for more action to combat caste and gender-based slavery
IDSN, Jul 1, 2015
At the 29th session of the UN Human Rights Council, IDSN held a parallel event on “Caste and gender-based forced and bonded labour” The event included a keynote video address by the UN Special Rapporteur on Contemporary forms of Slavery, Ms. Urmila Bhoola. »
Report: Dalits short-changed in aid delivery in Nepal
IDSN, May 29, 2015
A rapid assessment report of the situation of Dalit communities, traditionally marginalised in Nepal, has found that Dalits are discriminated in the distribution of relief materials in Nepal, receiving less aid than the dominant castes and being allocated leftovers from castes that rank higher in Nepal’s caste system. »
Diluting India's child labour law will trap families in cycle of poverty
The Guardian, May 18, 2015
The Indian government is making severe cuts to budgets that address discrimination and the welfare of the country’s most marginalised people. In a deeply flawed strategy, they are relaxing legislation on child labour as a means to alleviate poverty. »
IDSN urges agencies to counter caste discrimination in aid delivery after Nepal earthquake
IDSN, Apr 30, 2015
As aid agencies and NGOs fight to deliver aid and help victims of the devastating earthquake in Nepal, IDSN wish to draw attention to the importance of considering caste discrimination in relation to aid delivery in Nepal. »
From Slavery to Self Reliance: A Story of Dalit Women in South India
IPS, Apr 21, 2015
HuligeAmma, a Dalit woman in her mid-forties, and her 22-year-old daughter lead a simple yet contented life – they subsist on half a dollar a day, stitch their own clothes and participate in schemes to educate their community in Karnataka. »
Historical meeting Dalit women with North American Radical Women of Color and Trans Peoples Movements
Mar 31, 2015
A historical meeting of Dalit women leaders with North American Radical Women of Color and Trans Peoples Movements at Incite's Color of Violence 4 Conference held in Chicago, IL from March 26-29, 2015. A report... »
Resolution condemning caste-based discrimination introduced in US congress
IDSN, Mar 24, 2015
The house resolution introduced on the 16th of March by Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton condemns caste-based discrimination ad asks for the international community to act on this. The 1st Global Conference on Dalit Rights, which took place in Washington DC from 19-21st of March honoured the Congresswoman for introducing the resolution and urged congress to show strong support for it. »
Government Clampdown on Dalit, Adivasi Protesters: Dalit Woman Activist Forcibly Dragged Inside Police Station
NCDHR, Mar 12, 2015
In a shocking incident, over 30 Dalit and Adivasi students and activists were arrested this afternoon from Shastri Bhavan in New Delhi when they demanded to meet the Union Minister of Human Resource Development, Smriti Irani, over unfair budgetary allocations in education of Dalit and Adivasi students. »
Rape of Dalit women registers 500% increase since 2001, RTI reveals
The Indian Express, Mar 8, 2015
Rape of Dalit women rose in Gujarat over the last 13 years, reaching the highest in 2014, higher by 500 per cent since 2001, says an RTI reply. The reply to an RTI application by Mehsana-based human rights activist Kaushik Parmar, from the office of Director General of Police (DGP), Gujarat, revealed that 74 Dalit women were allegedly raped and cases were registered under the provisions of the Indian Penal Code and Scheduled Castes & Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, in 2014. »
Dalits - Advocacy
Answers to Parliamentary Questions by Member Voordewind (ChristianUnion)
(subm. Jan 31, 2017) to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation on the exclusion of civil society organisations by the Indian government
Feb 13, 2017
Answers to Questions European Parliament
(subm. Mar 3, 2015) to the European Commission on caste discrimination
May 14, 2015
Answers to Dutch Parliamentary Questions by member Voordewind (ChristianUnion)
(subm. Oct 31, 2014) about the report Flawed Fabrics on modern slavery and child labour in the production chain of clothing brands
Nov 14, 2014
Sexual violence against Dalit women: Minister Timmermans discusses Dalit issue with Indian government - commitment in UN still largely absent
MPs from the Dutch political parties ChristianUnion, Socialist Party, GreenLeft, D66 and SGP urged the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Timmermans on June 11 to raise the issue of mostly unpunished violence against Dalit women with the Indian government, the UN Human Rights Council and the EU.
DNN, Jun 23, 2014