‘Dalits exploited by political parties’

P. C. George, government Chief Whip has called upon the Dalit community to fight for their share in the political power structure.

Inaugurating a seminar on ‘Dalit outlook on Beauty’ here on Friday, Mr. George said the reservation system alone will not ensure their emancipation. “It is only through ensuring their legitimate share in the power and administrative structure of the land, that their rightful role in mainstream society can be realised,” he said.

Alleging that Dalit sections were being exploited by the mainstream political parties as mere pawns in votebank politics, Mr. George said the political class was afraid of the Dalits getting empowered politically.

The very fact that the mainstream political parties were engaged in an effort to engineer divisions among the members of the community was a clear pointer to this fear, he said.

Veteran journalist K M. Roy in his address said that the root cause of the rise of naxalism in the country could be traced to the failure of the authorities in ensuring social justice to the Dalit community.

Under maoists

“Today 42 districts in the country have been taken over by the Maoists. And the authorities are still under the belief that they would be able to overpower them through force,” Mr. Roy said making it clear that such a strategy would never work out unless their legitimate demands were met.

The downtrodden are still used as votebanks by the political class, he said.

He said that the money being spent in the name of Adivasi emancipation never reaches them. Referring to the lack of sensitiveness to Dalit sentiments, Mr. Roy said those who write about the unwed mothers among the Advasis never bother to bring the responsible persons to book through modern technologies like the DNA tests.

He also pointed out that the mainstream historians have not given due importance to the Dalit-Adivasi movements in the country. As such, there is a need to have a re-reading of the current history texts, he said.

Social critic Jayasanker in his address stressed on the tendency of the ‘elite’ among the Dalit community to get absorbed into the ‘mainstream’ by taking the shortcut of marriage alliances from the upper class.

Selina Prakanam chaired the session. Ajith Nanthancode , Boban T Thekkethil, O K Prabhakaran and others spoke.

  • ‘Naxalism arose because Dalits did not get social justice’

  • ‘Mainstream historians have ignored Dalit movements’