Staff Reporter

Seminar on social exclusion and inclusive policy begins

‘Besides caste discrimination, crime against certain castes is rampant’

Existence of in-built hierarchical social system caused inequalities, says V-C

VISAKHAPATNAM: Social exclusion is not only a development issue but is also a human rights issue and requires a more comprehensive and process-oriented response, Y. Chinna Rao, Member-Secretary of Indian Council of Historical Research, has said.

Delivering the key note address at a national workshop on “Social exclusion and inclusive policy with special reference to weaker sections of India” here on Friday, he said that approaches from the 1950s to the 1980s primarily focused on social and economic development and were less concerned with civil and political rights. In contrast, the human rights-based approach to development recognised both the achievement of a desirable outcome and the establishment of an adequate process to achieve and sustain it.

The Centre for Study of Social Exclusion and Inclusive Policy of Andhra University is organising the workshop.

Social exclusion

Social exclusion essentially related to the exclusion of groups wholly or partially from full participation in society in which they lived, Dr. Chinna Rao said. Besides, caste discrimination, crime against certain castes was also rampant, he said quoting statistics.

Dwelling at length on the inequality perpetrated on the basis of caste, he said that in spite of India playing a key role in several international covenants on human rights, caste was not listed in the UN treaties. The poor access of SC/ST population to resources, low ownership of agricultural land, high unemployment rates, low wages and literacy rates should be studied to give more specialised knowledge to government to overcome the challenges in inclusive growth.

AU V-C L. Venugopal Reddy noted that existence of inbuilt hierarchical social system and crucial issues like landlessness caused inequalities.

The University Grants Commission had recognised the need for studies on the issue and launched the centres to evolve strategies. He said students doing post-graduation would be offered a specialization by the university’s centre on inclusive policies. But suitability to employment should be kept in view. Registrar P. Vijay Prakash said units should be evolved to quantify exclusion. AU College of Arts and Commerce Principal L.K. Mohana Rao who presided said though after liberalization growth rate touched nine per cent inequalities widened.

Agricultural growth languished at less than two per cent in spite of its contribution of 18 to 19 per cent to GDP and 56 per cent population depending upon it. Workshop Director V. Subrahmanyam spoke.