pic courtesy- http://www.southasiapost.org/
From Aditi Khanna
London, Aug 24 (PTI) Some of Britain’s largest Dalit rights groups have criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi over his lack of action against alleged massacres in Bihar, ahead of the crucial assembly elections in the state.
In a letter to Prime Minister Modi, the Dalit organisations call on him to act upon the findings made in an undercover film by investigative news portal — Cobrapost.
The letter was signed by Meena Varma on behalf of the Dalit Solidarity Network, Arun Kumar of the Federation of Ambedkarite and Buddhist Organisation UK, Davinder Prasad of CasteWatchUK and?Amrit Wilson?of South Asia Solidarity Group.
“We are deeply shocked by the recent horrifying revelations about the massacres of Dalit and other oppressed- caste people in Bihar and are writing to you to express our dismay that you have so far neither spoken out against the killers and their accomplices nor taken any action against them,” the letter reads.
It goes on to spell out the findings of the film titled ‘Operation Black Rain‘, which claimed that Bihar’s upper caste landlord army Ranveer Sena perpetrated a number of major massacres of Dalits between 1994 and 2000, “brutally murdering some 144 men, women and children simply for demanding basic rights and dignity and for supporting the Communist Party of India (Marxist- Leninist)”.
“Can such horrific violence be tolerated in a democratic country? Unfortunately your lack of action on this issue gives the shocking?message that Dalit and oppressed caste lives do not matter in India.
“We urge you therefore to act urgently,” the letter concludes.
The documentary lists the killings in Sarthua (1995), Bathani Tola (1996), Laxmanpur Bathe (1997), Shankar Bigha (1999), Miyanpur (2000) and Ikwari (1997).
Campaign for the Bihar elections are in full swing where the ruling-NDA is trying to topple the two-time Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.