Party supporting Dalit Christians to mobilise votes, say DCFI leaders

The Dalit Christian Federation of India (DCFI) has expressed about about the Communist Party of India (Marxist)'s stance, affirming solidarity with the longstanding demands of Dalit Christians on reservation and social discrimination.

DCFI general secretary Joseph Panamoodan told mediapersons here on Friday that while they welcomed the declarations at a recent convention of Dalit Christians here, they could be viewed only as a move to mobilise Dalit Christian votes for the coming Assembly elections. “This strategy is the same as that of the Congress, which had done this for long, and it is objectionable,” he said.

Mr. Panamoodan said that the LDF government, in the past four years, had not earmarked any funds in the budget for the uplift of Dalit Christians. Dalit Christian students had committed suicide since they could not secure education loans. The government should shoulder the entire education cost of Dalit Christians, he said.

Mr. Panamoodan also called upon the CPI(M) to take the lead in bringing the Dalit Christians to the mainstream by allotting the Puthuppally, Thiruvalla, Kaduthuruthy, Kuttanad and Kottayam seats to the community's candidates as they have a dominant presence in these areas.

Dichotomy alleged

The DCFI leaders pointed out the “dichotomy in the stance of the CPI(M),” which on the one hand took a studied stance against identity politics, but on the other, convened separate conventions of dalit Christians and Scheduled Tribes community to mobilise political support.

They said the Dalit community would no longer blindly accept the hollow promises being made by political parties with an eye on vote bank.

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