Durban Diary: Dalits get a big morale boost from international media

By Pankaj Meshram

On the first day of Dalit protest in Durban:

Dalits got lots of Media publicity on many Radio, TV and News paper interviews. Due to this, next morning on Radio there was news about the Caste-based discrimination in India all across South Africa. All the other NGO from all over the world come to support us in pushing this issue all across now. We also had to spend some time in Intervations in different NGO drafting committees. The word "Caste-based discrimination" was included in every documents of NGO Forums i.e. Gender and Sex, Asian decent, Environmental, Educationa nd Media etc... This drafts will be recomended to UN respective drafting committees which will later discused by Govts.

On the Second day of Dalit protest in Durban:

Lots of Media publication. Indian Post and Murcury, both dialy papers here, had Top HeadLines on Castebased Discrimination. The news of Dalit woman getting paraded naked, we made a one page article and circulated all across. The impact of this news was enormous. Many ladies were almost tearfull and emotional with the news and thus all the NGO's are now in favour of this issue to be dicsussed in UN Govts Meettings. As usual, we all were also participating in different NGO Drafting Committees to push the issue. We got some TV interviews also done. In evening we had a protest in which memebers from Ambedkar Center for Justice had stole the limelight with A 6 foot protrait of Dr. Ambedkar with us in the protest. In March we had NCDHR and many other Dalit organisations with Palestines and all other groups supporting our cause.

On the third day of Dalit protest in Durban:

Very important thing happend on this day, we had a march in the streets by all groups on streets of Durban. Ambedakar Center for Peace and Justice had a stall here for all days and we discributed many books free pertaining the books of Anbedkar's Volumes and Castes in India and Anhilation of Caste. Some local schools also aproached us for addresssing this issue to the assembly of students so that this new generation will come to know about it. In the NGO section, Caste-based discrimination was the topic on Top everyday with Palestines topic on day three.

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Source: Dalit e-Forum
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Published on:1 Sep, 2001
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