Dalit Assertion and Suppression of Dissent

Centuries of oppression of the low castes by Brahmanism and the recent rise of Hindutva type of fascism, leading to attacks on Dalits, Adivasis, Women, LGBT, National & Religious Minorities has bread a (welcomed) new and renewed movement of resistance. The attacks on Dalits in Saharanpur, Utter Pardesh, last year(2017) in May, leading to over 50 houses being burnt down, by Thakur hoodlums, section of the Brahmin community, is one example of the continued atrocities faced by one of the Dalits the poorest section of the community. These heinous attacks were opposed by mass organisation of the Dalits. The local Bhim Army demanded the calling of Mahapanchet to discuss these crimes and decide how to deal with the culprits. This is a Constitutional right of the local community which was denied several times by the UP State authorities. The leader of Bhim Army Chandrashekhar Azad called for ‘Challo Delhi’ which resulted in the rally of over 30,000 in Jantar Mantar. The best thing about this gathering was; it was non-partisan and was supported by the oppressed Muslim community all over India. That collective determined RESISTANCE against repression, the ASSERTION for the want of the rights, for all the deprived sections of the community was what got the governments goats. The Indian Government cannot handle the needs and demands of the country. The present BJP-RSS led government has become a defunct Government. With a useless hope, they label every dissenting voice as Terrorist, Taliban, Naxal, and the rest.

The demand for Dalit rights is what has sent the chilling shock wave up the spine of the BJP-RSS government. The event of Bhim Army organised in Jantar Mantar was followed by the cowardly arrest of its President Chandrashekar Azad – Ravan under the notorious National Security Act. The Bhim Army leader remains behind bars despite the High Court having authorised him bail against all the fabricated charges. The thing that is really disturbing the Indian ruling class is Dalit’s attainment of knowledge that has been denied to them for centuries. This is a weapon the Dalits have acquired and they continue to build on that arsenal. The government is powerless against it. This weapon has been attained through the teachings of Jyoti Bhai Pule, Savitri Pule and Dr Ambedkar Ji. Dalits are now able to understand and analyse the society they live in, thanks to the teaching of Dr Ji. Dalits have learned, and are learning, the very important art of forming alliances. Dalits together with the other oppressed communities have formed a united front that is shaking the existing government of BJP-RSS alliance and will continue to do the same to any future government that allows discrimination based on Caste, Class, Nationality, Religion, Gender or Sexual Orientation.

Given all the above, what is the reaction of the Fascist Indian Government? It has resorted to labelling all dissenting voices, including Bhim Army, as ‘Naxals’. What a farse! A couple of months ago, five Activists arrested in June; Rona Wilson, Surendra Gadling, Sudhir Dhawale, Mahesh Raut and Shoma Sen, allegedly (totally fabricated) for being involved in the Bhima- Koregaon violent incident at the beginning of the year. Later, however, we were told a totally laughable tale that they had plotted to assassinate India’s PM! The alleged letter found in Rona Wilson’s computer is written in such poor English that it is an insult to attribute it to these highly intellectual individuals. If anything the appalling English used in that letter reflects the degenerate level of intelligence of those who composed it in the Fake News Industry. What is the point in assassinating Modi, he is already dead (politically) and has been for several years. The guy is scared to be interviewed and questioned. He is an absolute coward and a dead duck Prime Minister!

Only yesterday, we come to know that further five Activists have been detained for alleged links with Maoist, again totally fabricated. They are charging Arun Ferreira, Sudha Bharadwaj, Varavara Rao, Gautam Navlakha and Vernon Gonsalves under the notorious Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. These latest arrest are of lawyers, human rights activist and journalist are being alleged to have links with the banned Maoist rebel forces. It appears, indeed it is clear, that the Indian Central and State government are really scared of the Dalit assertion and the resistances put up, in unity, by the persecuted minorities for their rights. So much so, the only recourse government is embarking on is  slapping  of ‘Urban Maoist’ labels on any dissenting voices speaking for the Dalits and Minorities in India.  They use the cheap trick of invoking the UAPA, NSA, AFPA and a host of other anti-people laws, originating from the dark days of colonial rule.

Dalits are asserting themselves. They are standing up for their rights. They are learning the art of ‘united front’. Upper caste landed gentry and corporate bosses are not liking it – not one bit! The Government which serves the landed gentry and corporate houses are standing at logger-head against the most deprived and oppressed People of India. The oppressed People of India are saying ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. Here is another thing the Dalits have learned and are continually renewing that wisdom. They have realised that Caste annihilation is not possible without a war on the Class front. This realisation is now reverberating in the slogan of “Jai Bhim – Lal Salaam”. It is perhaps this development which is becoming a real thorn to the ruling elite. The Hindutva Indian Government is running hither and thither in complete frenzy. The only way forward, the present Hindutva regime sees, is to label all opposing views and resistance as Maoist, Naxals, Anti-National, etc. Very much like the Nazi loyalists did to the dissenting voices in Germany before and during the WWII. Their weapons of black laws, prisons, fake encounter killing, mob lynching, rape, gau raksha attacks and any other form of suppression will not work for much longer.

Lekh Pall 

Human Rights Activist in UK