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NHRC seeks report from Gujarat over boycott of Dalits

Following the report,the Gujarat government had sent a team of officers to the village.

Written by Express News Service | Ahmedabad | Published: December 31, 2013 2:10:55 am

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has sought an action taken report (ATR) from the Gujarat government on the alleged social boycott of Dalits in Dagavadia village of Mehsana district. In its communication to the District Collector and District Superintendent of Police,the Commission has asked them to submit an ATR within four weeks of getting the communication.

On November 16,The Indian Express had first reported about the village where Dalits were allegedly ostracised by the locally influential and dominant Chaudhary community members,following a minor dispute between two youths of the two communities.

The Commission sought the ATR from the government authorities following a complaint lodged by a member of an Ahmedabad-based voluntary organisation,Kantilal Parmar. Parmar had based his complaint on the report of The Indian Express and sought “immediate” action of the Commission for “human rights violation of the Scheduled Caste people in Dagavadia village”.

An assistant registrar of the Commission has asked the District Collector and District Superintendent of Police that “…an Action Taken Report be sent to the Commission within four weeks from the date of receipt of this letter”.

Dalits of Dagavadia village,which has a population of 3,000 and is dominated by the Chaudhary community,alleged that following a minor dispute between two youths of the communities,they have been ostracised by the Chaudharys. They alleged that they were not getting labour work in the fields mainly owned by Chaudharys. They also alleged that due to the pressure of the Chaudharys,they were facing difficulties in getting their daily ration from provision stores in the village.

Following the report,the Gujarat government had sent a team of officers to the village. In a communication to The Indian Express,Director of Scheduled Caste Welfare,Gujarat – R M Jadav – had said,“The team visited the village and met the sarpanch and other leaders of the village. The team had discussed with them and got positive solution of this matter. The complainant and other Dalits were given entry into the temple respectfully. At present,there is no dispute about ration,hair-cutting and supply of other commodities in the village. Moreover,the Dalits have been provided police protection according to their demand.”

However,the Dalits had stated that there was no major difference in the situation. Meanwhile,another voluntary organisation named Justice on Trial,led by former judge of Gujarat High Court and former Gujarat Lokayukta S M Soni,had also visited the village to bring social harmony through dialogue between the two communities.

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