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In Focus

May, 29

Which soap will the BJP use to clean their dirty mentality?

The stark reality of what the BJP thinks of Dalits can be found in two separate events in this last week. In Telengana, when the BJP President, Shri Amit Shah, went to meet Dalits and had a meal with them, he had his food brought from outside. After that, when the Uttar Pradesh CM, Yogi Adityanath was supposed to meet Musahar Dalit families, they were given soaps and shampoos to clean themselves.

In response to the latest action of Yogi Adityanath, Congress Vice-President, Rahul Gandhi asked which soap will the BJP use to clean their dirty mentality.

These two incidents show the true face of the BJP and the RSS, not by words, but by actions, thinking and processes. Untouchability in its most insidious forms is clearly evident here. The first was a case wherein Shri Amit Shah did not touch the food cooked by Dalits, but brought food from outside at his so-called ‘Dalit Lunch’.

The idea of dirt and impurity was also evident in the actions of Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath. The BJP, it seems, has embraced the regressive construct of ‘dirtiness’, which they have imposed on the Dalit community, and that is why the BJP believes that they need to be ‘cleansed.’ Lest we forget, in 2015, a sitting Union Minister, Gen (retd) VK Singh, had compared Dalit children to dogs.  

Even a cursory glance at the events of the last 3 years will show that Dalits have been targeted by BJP’s leaders and its supporters. In Saharanpur, scores of Dalit houses were torched in violence. From the violence in Una to two young children being charred to death in Rajasthan, there are numerous reports of violence against Dalits. In Rajasthan, a young Dalit boy was thrashed for touching mid-day meals utensils.

Crimes against Dalits have almost become routine, as evidenced from the fact that under the BJP, an atrocity is committed against them every 9 minutes. Since BJP assumed office, as per the latest data, Dalit atrocities have risen by an alarming 14.2%.

From petitioning against affirmative action to denying them access to justice, Dalits are being systematically excluded from the growth and development story of India. The Government must punish all those who continue to propagate this mindset. As a start, the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh must immediately apologise to this community. Appropriate cases must be registered under the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act against him and his official army, which has practised this brazen and shocking practice of untouchability.

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