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Friday, April 10, 2020

At IIT-Bombay, a talk on ‘democracy against caste’

The talk, the first in a nine-day lecture series on the Preamble to the Constitution, is being hosted by the ‘IIT-Bombay for Justice’ as an extension to its protest against the attacks on students in Jawaharlal Nehru University.

| Mumbai | Updated: January 18, 2020 12:49:39 pm
mumbai city news, IIT bombay, iit bombay talk on caste, jnu attacks, jnu violence Tejendra Pratap Gautam at IIT-Bombay. (Express photo)

The basic idea of democracy has evaporated from the Indian society, research scholar Tejendra Pratap Gautam said Friday during a discussion on ‘democracy against caste’ on the IIT-Bombay campus.

The talk, the first in a nine-day lecture series on the Preamble to the Constitution, is being hosted by the ‘IIT-Bombay for Justice’ as an extension to its protest against the attacks on students in Jawaharlal Nehru University.

“It is the cruel truth of Indian society that democracy has failed to give proper shelter to lower caste folks within the framework of democratic governance,” Gautam said while referring to the July 2016 flogging case in Una, Gujarat, where seven members of a Dalit family were assaulted by a cow vigilante group.

As a part of the programme, the forum will host lectures either by a faculty or student each day on the ideals enshrined in the Preamble that says India is a sovereign, socialist, secular, and democratic republic that secures justice, liberty, equality to all the citizens and promotes fraternity among the people.

Since January 6, students, faculty members, staff and campus residents have been assembling on the institute’s campus every evening to form human chains. The protests have seen discussion on myriad topics such as campus violence, problems with Citizenship (Amendment) Act and National Register for Citizens, fee hikes, institutional discrimination and curbing of dissent.

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