After seeing the nationwide protest against the supreme court verdict on SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities Act,1989, I do feel that we as a nation are slowly being propelled towards the complete disintegration. Now, the opportunist politicians and their blind followers are raising their middle finger towards the wisdom of Supreme Court of India and unethical media is giving fuel to the pyre. Through that news agency itself, I got to know that 9 people were killed and many were injured due to violent protest in many places of Bihar, Punjab and Madhya Pradesh.
It was also found that a mother was trying to find a way for her son in ambulance in between the protest and failed. Her son died in her lap. The incidence was reported in Hajipur district of Bihar. In a similar incidence from Bijnor, an old man succumbed to serious abdominal pain because he was not given the way to hospital which was just 600 meters away by protesting mob. One of my friend Sharad Kumar Singh has rightly mentioned in his FB post that our nation has more values for votes than human life. We have lost our credibility for being a civilized country. So, what was all the fuss about?
In the year 1955, an amendment in the Constitution was brought in, and a new Act came into being to give teeth to Article 17 of 1949. It was called Untouchability [Offences] Act. The Act makes practice of untouchability punishable. Preventing Dalits accessing to public places-restaurants, hotels, religious places, denial of services such as haircut, cloth washing, for instance, were defined as crimes. Still such crimes were reported in many parts of the country. And that was the reason to amend the constitution in 1989 to accommodate SC/ST Act or Dalit Act to prevent such atrocities. But, do we really practice untouchability or do we really afflict the afflicted from SC/ST community. We as a nation do need to ask these questions to ourselves. Specially the media which is pioneer in projecting such news to assist their political forefathers in Indian politics.
I am literally surprised to see a paragraph by Alok Prasanna Kumar from Firstpost. It says, “The court’s doublespeak on the matter of atrocities is breathtaking. On the one hand, no effort is made to find out the impact of the law in improving the lives of Dalits or Adivasis, whether it has actually reduced the number of atrocities, whether more atrocities are being brought to light and prosecuted and whether oppressed classes feel safe and secure as a result of the law. On the other, it is assumed that it is the law itself that is not promoting constitutional values of fraternity and integration of the society, and therefore needs to be given an interpretation as such. It’s quite obvious where the court’s sympathies lie.” Looks like media is abusing their rights more than anyone else in this country. By giving a poisonous statement related to the sympathies of Supreme Court, their intentions are obvious. They want a kind of anarchy or civil war in India like Syria or Iraq.
Political parties like BSP, SP and Congress are leaving no stone turned to label BJP as an anti-SC/ST party and PM Modi as the leader of upper castes in India. Seems like they are not anticipating the sever damage they are going to bring to nation in order to regain their political powers in their respective areas. In such effort, they are trying to make this country no how lesser than Pakistan. They also make fun of their Supreme Court and most of the verdicts are passed under the influence of their army generals. If our politicians continue to disintegrate our nation in similar fashion for their personal gain then I am afraid that day is not far from us when our Army will take the charge of the political system in India much like Pakistan.
Few days back, we were seeing clashes between two communities after the celebration of festival Ram Navmi in West Bengal and Bihar. So, many people had to take shelters in refugee camps in Raniganj and Asansol. An old man saw his 16 year old son being dragged away by mob and later his dead body was recovered. Media did get some TRPs by broadcasting news about the generosity of that old man, who do not want to name anyone as suspect in order to prevent the sheer insanity of people to kill each other in the name of religion, caste and creed. And now the protest against the verdict of SC/ST act by supreme court is like an icing on the cake to media and politicians.
Another paragraph from news18 will compel you to answer them. It says, “Why after all, why would a Dalit would implicate someone falsely? At worse, a Dalit being constantly harassed might just use this Act just to settle scores because all other IPC sections don’t bring any relief.” My answer to them would be as blunt as possible. In a country with moral erosion anyone can falsely implicate anyone. And when they say that Dalits are being constantly harassed and their women are being raped then let me remind you that the brave girl Nirbhaya was not a dalit, but her rapists were all dalits. So, my point is to stop seeing things through the lens of caste-ism and be more on humanitarian side. May be you all win through the review petition in Supreme Court against the verdict, but the quest of division and discrimination in the society can never be won just by establishing a law, which is meant to be abused like section 498-A of IPC, Section 420 and 304.
To conclude this, all I can request to media and my fellow citizens to establish the conquest to prevent the nation from lawlessness and atrocities against any individual(be it a dalit or non-dalit) rather than dying and killing people for a 30 year old SC/ST act. You may have the right to protest in a democratic country, but for sure you do not have the right to block the path of an ambulance which killed a child or caused a painful death to an old man.
By : Nilesh Ranjan