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Reservation – A tool for ‘Level-Playing field’ or a ploy for ‘Political Appeasement’?

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By Dr. J. K. Bhutani

The well intentioned ‘Reservation Policies under the Constitution’ envisioned as a rightful freedom gift for the downtrodden and ‘low castes’ that had been exploited for centuries, has become a political tool in the hands of economically and politically powerful people now. The object of ensuring a ‘level-playing’ field for the extremely backward, the scheduled castes, tribes and the exploited is not the issue anymore! Rather reservation has become a mechanism to extract political mileage, power and exert strong lobbying!

The Patels of Gujarat, the Jats of northern India or the emerging Yadavs are all demanding the share in reservation, not for the downtrodden and poor to bring them in the mainstream. Neither is the demand for a balanced growth of emerging India. It represents more of a ‘bullying lobby demand’ for the share in the upfront bureaucracy, political power structure and emerging growth story of India. The current protests of Patels and Jats ransacking the state conveys more of their economic clout, power and political bargaining than the real need for the upliftment of their class status.

From an affirmative action for ‘not-so-privileged’ to bring them to mainstream, to an electoral crutch for the politicians, and now a bullying tool in the hands of ‘influential lobbied’ castes, the reservation system has done more harm to the vision of the constitution makers of India than it has benefited the deserving stakeholders….!

The seeds were sown in 1933, by the ‘Communal Award’ of then Prime Minister of Britain, Ramsay MacDonald which suggested separate representation for the Muslims, Sikhs, Christians, Anglo-Indians, Europeans and Dalits for elected representatives of special constituencies.

ReservationThe award was opposed by Mahatma Gandhi as a divisive tactic, but later negotiated with Dr. B. R. Ambedkar in a more dilute form to include dalits in Hindu electorate with some seats reservation (Poona Pact). Electorates for other religions like Muslim and Sikh remained separate.

The Caste System which existed in Hindu religion since 1500 BC was finally abolished in the Indian constitution after independence. The primary stated objective of the Indian reservation system was to increase the opportunities for enhanced social and educational status of the underprivileged communities and thus uplift their lifestyle to have their place in the mainstream of Indian society. The reservation system provided for the opportunities for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes to increase their political representation in the Legislatures, the Executive Organs of the Centre/States, the work force, educational institutions and public sector areas.

The measure was not intended to be a permanent right, and was provisioned for future debates and modifications for the classless visions of the founders of free independent India.

There was a provision for 22.5% reservation for Scheduled Caste (SC) and Scheduled Tribe (15% for SCs, 7.5% for STs). The further inclusion of OBC’s meant increasing the quota from 22% to 49.5%, which was done against the wishes of youth of India in 1992 by V. P. Singh by implementing the Mandal commission’s reports.

Although the Supreme Court of India has ruled that reservations could not exceed 50%, still the clamour for such inclusions by various ‘influential lobbied’ castes and appeasing tactics of political parties are a regular feature in India. The other regulation of Supreme Court regarding the relaxation of 5-10% aggregate marks is often flouted by the states and centre for petty political motives. The intended benefits for the low castes are nowhere near the vision of the founders of the constitution. On the contrary it has widened the ‘rift and friction among castes’ and given us a ‘below average, at best mediocre’ bureaucracy, service sector and professionals class…..!

The state shall continue with such measures till we have depleted all the best brains of the country by the ‘weeds-overtaking-the crop’ phenomenon….!

RESERVE we must and maybe we do more than 50 percent! The atrocities and exploitation of centuries cannot be removed or compensated in decades of slow equity provisions of constitution and half-hearted participation of elites.
We do need to bring them all to mainstream for the equal, just and fair society envisaged in the socialist democratic India, But the way to go is not by going for the political appeasement of the economic influential lobbies of the organised powerful groups, but looking compassionately the need of level –playing field for the downtrodden, weakest of the weak and the dalits.

We need to undertake massive programs to teach them, coach them, fortify them, give them enough economic help and make them ‘level-playing’ in the real sense and not as an appeasement for vote-banks….!
The clamour for the caste-based reservation may be the political unanimity of the current times, but the merit based reservation is the need and demand of the youth.

The voice of the youth is ‘please do not lower the standards by lowering the cut-offs…..!’

We need to maintain livable standards of excellence for civil society to evolve ever and India cannot afford to miss its coveted emerging status in the hierarchy of nations…..!

Dr J.K. Bhutani MD is a protagonist of preventive and promotive health care based on austere biology and facilitating self healing powers of human organism.
You can follow him at https://twitter.com/drjkbhutani

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JNU Ideologues are Spewing hate in the name of Dissent and nurturing Anti-India ideologies

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JNU
JNU has become den for left politics. VOA
  • By Amit Srivastava

Sep 16, 2017: With the help of media propaganda and public opinion manufacturers, JNU has become an epitome of left politics – Viciously nurturing the anti-India ideologies and placing them into state establishment through their sympathizers.

They hate a lot of things that are Indian or having Indian identities. Their perpetual anathema is cleverly placed with covert name of ‘dissent’. It would be interesting to know, how they instill a failed and violent ideology like Marxism through inroads of hate.

Before 93rd amendment for OBC quota in higher education, JNU had very progressive admission policy with weightage number for backward districts, castes and also for women. Though these deprivation points still exist, but since half of admission is done on caste lines, these points are less relevant now. Owing to its admission policy and standard entrance exam, JNU has been providing excellent higher education opportunity for the students from remote rural areas at par with metro educated students.

Ironically, left parties with help of communist faculty members also exploit this opportunity as they get fresh cadres who could easily get disconnected caused by the language difficulties, cultural shock and administrative difficulties. A person with deeply rooted Indian value system won’t accept valueless violent ideology of Marx. Brainwashing such person is not easy. Hence the process of indoctrination begins with very first day of admission at JNU.

Earlier, admission process in JNU was cumbersome and lengthy. Comrades used to catch new comers in the name of admission assistance. Now, this opportunity is lost as there is single window admission process is adopted by JNU administration. Another step to trap the new comers is artificial scarcity of hostel. You are on their mercy of ‘these seniors’ who offer you to stay with them. And sometimes 6-7 students stay in 10-by-15 hostel rooms. More freshers in one comrade’s room means more problem, hence more opportunity to brainwash them.

First stage of abomination start with inciting new-comers to hate individuals including hating own self. This hate is designed to suit the social conflict theory of communism. If you are a general category student, you must hate yourself for being born in ‘upper caste’ and must accept it wholeheartedly than only you would be ‘ready’ to abuse political opponents on caste line.

If you are from OBC-SC-ST and Minority, you must hate those ‘upper caste’ guys living with you in the same campus, no matter they’re even poorer or more deprived than you. Irrespective of rationality and humanity, you must hate them; because they’re born in bourgeoisie castes, and you should assume yourself as proletariat, even if you are richer and dominate than most of them. This hate is mandatory. Selective crimes are extrapolated to justify it. Incidents like Khailanji, where Dalits were burned alive, are used to consolidate this hate. But details of culprits are purposefully hidden and ignored as they don’t belong to ‘general caste’ and this may derail the hate direction.

Minority students have to hate Hindu co-students as per the conditioning of the leftist mentors. Hindus are blamed for their all problems. OBC-SC-STs are encouraged to hate Hinduism too. If there are complacent with it, they’re encouraged to shun Hinduism and accept more exploitative Islam, Christianity or atheism. At same time, Muslims and Christians students are encouraged to be more religious and fanatic for their respective faith. This is why JNU communists encourage Islamic or Christian festivals but gets reprimanded if students celebrate Hindu festivals in the campus.

This abhorrence has another intense level of inculcation. Female students from remotely rural areas are too attached with their families. Girls won’t be a good ‘recruiting’, ‘facilitating’ and a devoted comrade, until they respect family system and existing social ethics of the society. Hence, they’re taught that they’re the master of their own body. Their vagina belongs to them and their father has no right to say with whom they shall sleep. This typical teaching is very crucial and preached through woman comrades in very delicate ways by living with them, fanaticizing with them with instilling a false sense of empowerment and freedom among them… only to sexually exploit them for own leaders or an allurement for the new recruits.

JNU’s left ideologues are not limited to a close campus. Congress governments have been giving them important posts in order to devise new divide-and-rule policies. After debacle of 2014, these master-less Maoists of JNU are left with no one to support. Their political existence was long gone.  Post General Elections 2014, they engineered several caste-riots, devouring state-funding and abusing the same state. Unfortunately, they failed into it too.

Within JNU, they opened another sister concern named ‘BAPSA’ – an organization that not only abuse Hinduism on daily basis, but also abuse the students who belong to Brahmin or ‘Savarn’ castes. The right to live with dignity for these ‘savarn caste’ students is violated by BAPSA and left-relict in name of Social Justice. Ironically, JNU administration allows such caste abuses in name of sociological studies. Much grave violation of thousands of students’ fundamental right to live with dignity is violated every day.

However, these avant-garde social terrorists still think that they can potentially harm the ruling BJP party by taking Bhimrao Ambedkar’s name. Now a days, Student wing of Naxalites, DSU used ‘Jai Bhim’ along with ‘Lal Salam’ in order to immunize itself from the responsibility of offending content it circulate within JNU campus. It is high time for Ministry of Human Resource Development and JNU administration to stop the violation of personal dignity of students. We must not allow the abuses and exploitations just for the sake of intellectual pleasure and useless showoff of tiny campus victory.

Amit can be reached at Twitter @amisri


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“Ants Among Elephants” by Indian-Origin Author Sujatha Gidla is Creating Waves in the US

Interview with Sujatha Gidla, who recently wrote a memoir capturing the life of Dalit community in India

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Dalit Women protesting against exploitation
Dalit Women protesting against exploitation. Wikimedia
  • Many instances of discrimination and humiliation that she and her family were customarily subjected to
  • This Independence was not real independence, it was only transfer of power
  • Caste-based discrimination is uniquely cruel

New York, USA, August 27, 2017:  The nation has just celebrated Independence Day with great pomp and fervor but does this special occasion evoke similar sentiments among the Dalits living in the country? No, contends an Indian-origin author Sujatha Gidla, who was born an “untouchable” and is now creating waves in US literary circles with a provocative memoir capturing the life of her community in India.

Until recently, Sujatha Gidla was just another New Yorker, working as a conductor on the City Subway. But her recent memoir, “Ants among Elephants: : An Untouchable Family and the Making of Modern India”, which not only details her memories of growing up as a Dalit woman in India but also lists the many instances of “discrimination and humiliation” that she and her family were customarily subjected to, has thrust her into the limelight.

On how she responds to special occasions like Independence Day, the author said that, as children, they would admire iconic figures like Gandhi and Nehru, and celebrate the day but things changed gradually as they become more aware.

ALSO READ: Religious minorities, Dalits face discrimination in India: A report by US Commission on International Religious Freedom

“When I joined the RSU (Radical Students Union) we were told that (this) Independence was not real independence, that it was only transfer of power. And now we don’t feel anything because we are not made to feel that we are Indians like other Indians.

“It is the same thing in the universities where I studied. I don’t have that pride of my alma mater because we were not treated as equals. None of us have that pride, not even my mother,” Gidla told IANS in an email interview from New York.

The author further quipped that, by and large, “this is not independence” for members of her community.

“There have been many types of discrimination in various parts of the world. As far as I know, caste discrimination is uniquely cruel. There is racism in America, but I will never compare it with caste and rather say that caste is much worse.

“I will also say this: Blacks here are murdered, they have been lynched. But I have never read about another place where untouchables are fed excreta, made to drink urine and paraded naked. Even under slavery, the slave owners took care to feed their slaves in order to keep them fit to work. Untouchables in India never even had that,” Gidla said.

Sujatha Gidla reiterated that untouchability is neither a religious nor a cultural problem. It is rather a social problem and that there has to be “some sort of fundamental change”; otherwise the Dalits will “continue to suffer”.

Elaborating on the “suffering” that she repeatedly mentions in the book, Gidla said most Dalits in India, particularly those trying to fight against the caste system, live under constant duress due to verbal attacks and the threat of physical violence.

“Our neighbors in India have been actively trying to kick my mom out of her apartment. Her (upper) caste colleagues hate the fact that her daughter wrote a successful book.”

“That is the irony; we cannot even celebrate the publication of the book because we are afraid that it will make people around us unhappy. Even fellow untouchables are not posting it on social media for fear of being exposed to their colleagues and (upper) caste friends as untouchables,” she elaborated.

Also Read: Dr. Kallol Guha: Anglophonic Education will not uplift Dalits

Gidla’s grandparents converted to Christianity at the onset of the 20th century and were educated at Canadian missionary schools. She too, with the help of Canadian missionaries, studied physics at the Regional Engineering College in Warangal, in what is Telangana today. She was also a researcher in applied physics at IIT-Madras.

Gidla initially worked as a developer in software design, then moved to banking but lost her job in 2009 during the economic crisis. Finally, she took up the job of a conductor at the New York Subway.

This book, Gidla said, initially began as an investigation into the caste system but finally took the shape of a memoir as her family members also enriched its pages with their personal experiences and reflections.

So what would bring “freedom” in the true sense to Gidla and her family, as also to over 300 million Dalits in India?

“True freedom is equal access to everything in society -education, jobs, etc. When that is achieved, the prejudices will begin to disappear, but only gradually, not instantaneously. Without having equal access to economic betterment all these words about caste being an evil practice or we should treat untouchables with respect are meaningless,” she maintained.

The book has been published in the US by Farrar, Straus and Giroux, an imprint of Macmillan publishers, and is yet to hit the Indian market. (IANS)

 

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Caste System is a form of Religious Discrimination, says His Holiness the Dalai Lama

The Caste system exists not only in India but other regions of the world as well

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Caste System
Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama. Wikimedia
  • The Dalai Lama has clearly stated that the practice of caste system is against religious beliefs of the individual
  • Speaking in Padum, Zanskar for the Avalokiteshvara, he urged the people to stop this practice
  • The caste system is a failed aspect of the feudal system in India, which no longer exists 

New Delhi, August 10, 2017: Speaking to his devotees at Padum, Zanskar for the Avalokiteshvara, His Holiness the Dalai Lama explained how caste system is a practice that discriminates against the individual’s religious beliefs.

The Dalai Lama also urged the people to stop using this practice. He explained that the practice of caste differentiation was an aspect of the feudal Indian society, which no longer prevails.

Caste system goes against religion. In fact, no religion in the world promotes or encourages caste differences.

ALSO READ: Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama offers prayers for the victims of floods in Sri Lanka

The Tibetan spiritual leader reminded us that the feudal system was beaten by a democratic system. It is the high time people realize this.

He continued that just because one is from low class does not mean we should discriminate against them. No religion teaches that. Love is a common universal philosophy propagated by every religion. Gautam Budha was against discrimination 2,600 years before the caste system was even established!

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The spiritual leader went on to say that practicing caste system is an open declaration of being against the Buddha and Dalai Lama.

More than 10,000 people attended the talk at Photang Teaching Ground, with many visitors from different parts of Ladakh and Zanskar. The devotees of the Dalai Lama offered long life prayers afterward in a ceremony called Tenshug.

[bctt tweet=”Caste system goes against religion, says Dalai Lama” username=”NewsGramdotcom”]

It is estimated that more than 260 million people all over the world suffer from caste discriminatory practices, the majority of these people being in South Asia. The Dalits from India are often cited as the most familiar example. But caste system also exists in the Middle East, Pacific, and African regions.

The discriminated caste is subjected to inhuman conditions of economics and politics. The Dalits, for example, live in severe poverty and are more commonly identified as ‘untouchables’ in India. The dirty and ‘looked-down-upon’ jobs are mostly given to the Dalits.

Even when it comes to distribution of wealth and access to resources, the Dalits are served last.

Thus, the Dalai Lama’s powerful words against caste system were much needed. The message of peace and harmony was important, especially coming from a popular spiritual leader- the Holiness himself.

– Prepared by Saksham Narula of NewsGram. Twitter: @Saksham2394