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Caste Discrimination

Tamil Nadu: Shopkeeper, village head arrested for barring Dalit children from buying candy

The shopkeeper said it was decided in a village meeting not to sell anything to persons from the Scheduled Community.

Scroll Staff
Sep 17, 2022 · 08:46 pm Updated Sep 17, 2022 · 09:20 pm
Tamil Nadu: Shopkeeper, village head arrested for barring Dalit children from buying candy Screengrab of a video shows shopkeeper refusing to sell candies to Dalit children in Tenkasi, Tamil Nadu. | @TheBluePen25 / Twitter

Two persons were arrested in Tamil Nadu’s Tenkasi district on Saturday after a video on social media showed that one of them, a shopkeeper, refused to sell candy to children from the Dalit community, ANI reported, citing the district collector.


In the video from KV Nallur area of Tenkasi, the shopkeeper identified as S Maheshwaran told the children that it was decided in a village meeting not to sell anything to persons from their community, reported The Indian Express.

A shopkeeper in Tenkasi district in #TamilNadu is denying candy to dalit kids from nearby adi-dravida school in the name of caste .He says "we have made a decision not to sell anything to people from "your street" ". "You should not come to the village shops hereafter" pic.twitter.com/2fEFi6CyS0

— Shalin Maria Lawrence (@TheBluePen25) September 17, 2022

“Don’t buy any candy from here. Go to school,” the shopkeeper says in Tamil, according to The Indian Express. “You shouldn’t buy any candy from any of the shops here. Go and tell the people at home that the shopkeepers aren’t giving eatables. We won’t give and there is a restriction.”

The children ask the shopkeeper what restrictions were imposed to which he says: “The village meeting has decided not to give eatables to people from your street. So, leave. Go,”

The video shows the group of children leaving the shop without buying anything.

On Saturday, the Tenkasi District Police said that it has taken cognisance of the matter and registered a first information report.

A discriminatory video pertaining to KV Nallur area in Tenkasi district has been found circulating in social media platforms today.Taking cognisance of it immediately,an FIR has been registered and will be investigated.Action is being taken as per law..#TenkasiDistrictPolice

— Tenkasi District Police (@TenkasiPolice) September 16, 2022

After an inquiry, District Collector P Akash found that the decision to not sell items to the children were taken following a clash between the members of the two castes, reported The Hindu.


A police inquiry found that some youth belonging to a particular caste and the Scheduled Caste had clashed during a wedding. The police booked some the youth from the other caste under the provisions of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. They also registered a case against a few Scheduled Caste youths based on the complaint by the opposite group.


Following the clash, one youth, K Ramachandran alias Murthy, could not appear for the armed forces recruitment due to the case against him under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, according to The Hindu.

A meeting was then organised to restore peace between the two communities and for withdrawing the complaints. But, both the sides failed to resolve the conflict.

It was after the meeting that one of the groups decided not to sell items to members of the Scheduled Cast communities.



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Fined Rs 60,000 for touching idol, Karnataka Dalit family says will only worship Ambedkar now

Shobamma’s 15-year-old son, who was outside when a procession was taken out in the village, touched a pole attached to the idol of Sidiranna, a prominent south Indian village deity.

Written by Kiran Parashar
Bengaluru | Updated: September 22, 2022 6:57:33 am



Shobamma replaces Dr B R Ambedkar's photograph in place of other gods in her home.


“If God doesn’t like us, we will not pray to him. We will offer our prayers to Dr B R Ambedkar,” said Shobamma out of frustration. Shobamma was given a deadline to cough up a fine of Rs 60,000 by October 1 after her son touched a pole during a religious procession of the village. The offence: Shobamma belongs to a Dalit family.


Shobamma lives in Ullerahalli in Malur taluk of Kolar district, barely 60 km from Bengaluru, with her family. On September 9, Shobamma was penalised for her son’s “crime” but the incident came to light only on Monday when she narrated her ordeal to a few Dalit organisations of Kolar.


On September 8, the villagers were holding the Bhootayamma fair and Dalits were not allowed to enter the village deity’s temple. Shobamma’s 15-year-old son, who was outside when a procession was taken out in the village, touched a pole attached to the idol of Sidiranna, a prominent south Indian village deity. Venkateshappa, a villager, noticed it and alleged transgression and asked his family to appear before the village elders.


The next day, Shobamma, who met the elders, was in for a rude shock after she was asked to pay a fine of Rs 60,000 by October 1. She was also told that if she fails to pay the fine, she would be “thrown out of the village”.

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According to the local residents, the village consists of nearly 75-80 houses, and most of the families hail from the Vokkaliga community. The village has around 10 Scheduled Caste families. Shobhamma’s house is in the outskirts of the village and her son is a student of 10th standard at a school in Tekal village.


Ramesh, Shobamma’s husband, mostly remains ill, leaving the woman to be the sole breadwinner of the family. “I take a train every morning at 5.30 am to Bengaluru and work as a housekeeping staff at an apartment in Whitefield and return by 7.30 pm. I get a salary of Rs 13,000 and that is all we have to run the house. The Rs 60,000-penalty came as a shock for us,” Shobamma said.

Asked what did the village elders say, Shobamma said she was told that the idol has turned impure since a Dalit boy had touched it and they needed to purify it and repaint the idol and the fine amount will be used for the work.


“If God doesn’t like our touch or if people want to keep us away, what is the point of us offering prayers? Like any other person, I also have spent money, offered donations for God. Hereafter, I will not do any such thing and will only offer prayers to Dr B R Ambedkar,” she told The Indian Express.


Sandesh, a local activist who runs Ambedkar Seva Samithi, said he came to know about the incident Monday night and rushed to meet the family. “I went to their home and helped them file a police complaint. Even after 75 years of independence, if such social evils are still in practice, where will the poor people go?” he questioned.


Speaking to The Indian Express, Kolar Deputy Commissioner Venkat Raja said he visited the village Wednesday and met the family. “We have given them a plot to construct a house and have paid them some money. We will provide a job for Shobamma in the social welfare hostel as well. I have also informed the police to arrest the accused at the earliest and they are at it,” Raja said.

Meanwhile, the police invoked provisions of Protection of Civil Rights Act against former Gram Panchayat member Narayanaswamy, Venkateshappa, the husband of the Gram Pradhan, panchayat vice-president and a few others.


Such incidents in Karnataka are not new. Last year, in Miyapur village in Koppal district, a Dalit family was slapped a fine of Rs 25,000 by the village leaders for a boy’s “offence” of entering a local temple. The government, which had taken up the issue, launched a programme named Vinaya Samarasya Yojana, an awareness programme meant to eradicate untouchability.



Edited by Stan AF
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11 hours ago, coffee_rules said:

^^ you forgot to add this that she is lamenting that she can’t use SC/ST law for such a frivolous purpose as she is a Dalit Christian! (TIL that they can’t use the law after converting )


She is the same one who advocated more conversion to stop BJP .. we have quite a few specimens in this country 

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'Didn't Let Us Study, Wear Good Clothes': Dalits in Delhi Convert to Buddhism

The event attended by Rajendra Gautam, a Delhi Cabinet Minister, saw the participation of about 7,000 people.

Published: 05 Oct 2022, 7:04 PM IST
'Didn't Let Us Study, Wear Good Clothes': Dalits in Delhi Convert to Buddhism

Santosh, 32, from Uttar Pradesh's Ghaziabad, dropped out of school when he was in class seven. "I am a Dalit, and I faced casteist slurs from students on a regular basis. I tried complaining to the teachers but to no avail," he told The Quint.

He was the first person in his family to go to school, which he calls "something of an achievement."

On Thursday, 5 October, Santosh walked inside the Ambedkar Bhavan in Delhi's Jhandewalan area to the chants of "Jai Bhim" with a hope in his heart that now things will change.

After all, he was here to embrace Buddhism.


Apart from Santosh, hundreds of Dalits from across Delhi-NCR embraced Buddhism as part of the Buddha Dhamma Deeksha Samaroh, an event organised by the Jai Bheem Mission – founded by Advocate Rajendra Gautam, a Delhi cabinet minister and leader of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).

"I want to be part of a casteless society. A society where everybody has the same opportunities like the one Babasaheb (Ambedkar) strived for," Gautam told The Quint.

Santosh, 32, works as a rickshaw puller in Delhi's Paharganj. 

(Photo: Himanshi Dahiya/The Quint)

The event was attended by a few thousand people, Rajratna Ambedkar, an activist and great grand-nephew of Dr BR Ambedkar, was also in attendance.

"If we don't want our children to be murdered for drinking water from the pots, keeping a moustache, or for owning or riding horses, we will have to organise ourselves and our community will have to come together in a disciplined manner," Gautam said as he addressed the gathering with chants of Baudhh dharam ki kya pehchaan? Maanav, maanav ek samaan (What is the identity of Buddhism? All humans are equal) and Jaati choddo, Samaaj Jodo (Break the caste system, unite the society).


AAP's Rajendra Pal Gautam addressing the crowds.

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