Social Issues

Malicious Reporting

IN a letter written to the editor of Malayala Manorama on March 8, 2014, Hannan Mollah, former Lok Sabha member and a member of the CPI(M), took strong exception to a news story published by the said paper regarding the candidature of Uluberia Lok Sabha constituency in West Bengal. The text of the letter is reproduced here.
“This is to invite your attention to the report appeared in the Malayala Manorama  daily dated March 6, 2014 regarding the candidature of Uluberia Lok Sabha constituency in West Bengal, which I represented for eight terms.

Will Caste Discrimination and Untouchability end by Economic Empowerment alone?

AT the outset, I want to make clear what I mean by economic empowerment. It means provision of land, housing, reservations in employment and political reservations etc. My contention is that without ending the social discrimination and untouchability, we cannot bridge the gap between dalits and non- dalits with any number of programmes for empowerment and providing equal opportunities, because, the pervasive presence of caste prejudice at every level of society, especially in villages, will always undo all the well-meaning initiatives of any institution including that of the government.

AARM National Conference Calls for Intensifying Struggles & Building Unity

AMID slogans, songs and drum beats hailing the success of the second national conference of the Adivasi Adhikar Rashtriya Manch (AARM), its newly re-elected chairman Bajuban Riyan called on the 345 delegates representing 14 states to take the inspiring message of the conference –intensify struggle, build unity and strengthen organisation, to every village and block where adivasis reside.

New Disability Rights Bill Demanded

THE abrupt end of the winter session of parliament, two days ahead of the schedule, came as a big disappointment to the millions of disabled persons in the country. For the umpteenth time, the UPA’s government’s promise of tabling the Disability Rights Bill remained unfulfilled. This, despite the fact that the cabinet had cleared it, on December 12, 2013, after an inordinate and inexplicable delay. Opinion was divided over not just the intent and will of the government but also on whether in the given circumstances the bill could be tabled and passed.

Indications of Rising Inequities among North East Tribes, 2001-2011

On the Apex Court’s Verdict Regarding S 377 IPC

IN a statement issued on December 11, AIDWA expressed deep disappointment at the Supreme Court judgment which upholds Section 377 of the IPC. It is shocking that inspite of the Union of India (along with the petitioners) arguing in favour of a reading down of S 377, the SC has upheld this draconian and discriminatory section that illegalised same sex relations and other forms of consensual sex. The section is also in contradiction with the recently amended rape and sexual laws.

Abolish Manual Scavenging TNUEF Pickets the Seat of Power

THE law remains on paper on various issues. But, the most cruel issue is using humans to clean the human waste. Many judgments and orders have been issued by the Supreme Court and various High Courts. The Employment of Manual Scavengers and Construction of Dry Latrines (Prohibition) Act, 1993 was passed in the parliament. The employment of the scavengers or the construction of dry (non-flush) latrines is punishable under the law. There will be imprisonment for upto one year and/or a fine of Rs 2,000. The sad part of this is that till date there is no single conviction under this law.

CPI(M) Submits Memorandum On Amendments to SC/ST POA Act

THE CPI(M) delegation comprising K Varadarajan, Polit Bureau member of the CPI(M), Basudev Acharia, Central Committee member and leader of the CPI(M) group in Lok Sabha, V Srinivasa Rao, Central Secretariat member and G Mamatha, CPI(M) member met Selja, minister for social justice and empowerment, government of India on December 10, 2013 and submitted a memorandum urging the government to move the amendments to strengthen the Prevention of Atrocities Act and adopt them in this winter session of the parliament.

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