Attacks on Dalits on the rise since formation of Telangana
Hyderabad: Contrary to the fact that Telangana State is striving to achieve golden era, the new state has witnessed attacks on Dalits, which have been increased by four-fold since its formation.While 688 cases were registered between January 2014 and June 2014, after the formation of the state a total of 2,879 cases were reported under the SC/ST Prevention of Atrocity Act. What is more interesting is that Hyderabad, which is considered to be a global city, tops the list with 706 cases followed by Karimnagar district 489, Nalgonda 409, Mahbubnagar 378, Khammam 224, Warangal 205, Adilabad 176, Medak 145, Nizamabad 104 and 92 cases in Rangareddy district.
According to the information obtained under the Right to Information Act by Batthula Ram Prasad, president, Mala Hakkula Sankshema Sangham, a State-Level High Power Vigilance and Monitoring Committee which is chaired by the Chief Minister, has not been formed so far. As per Rule 16(2) of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act 1989, the committee has to meet in January and July every year.
According to information gathered by RTI plea, while the state-level committee is yet to be formed, the district-level vigilance committees under the chairmanship of District Collectors have been formed. But during the last 15 months, they held only 17 meetings though they should have met once every three months to monitor the cases booked under the Act.
When asked about the government’s reaction to the spurt in number of cases registered under the SC/ST Atrocities Act, Deputy Chief Minister Kadiyam Srihari refused to react stating that he wanted to first study the statistics before commenting on the issue. Even Balka Suman MP refused to make any comment saying that he was not aware of the facts.
Meanwhile, Ram Prasad, of Mala Hakkula Sankshema Sangham alleged that the TRS government was deliberately ignoring attacks on Dalits. He said according to the act, the government has to organise Civil Rights Day in every village on 30th of every month to create awareness of the Act among Dalits.
But since it was not implementing the Act in true spirit, attacks on Dalits have been increasing, he added. However, a deeper probe is required to ascertain the fact that the increase in number of cases is genuine. Whatever the case might be, the steep increase in the number of registered cases is a matter of concern.
By:V Naveen Kumar