DALIT SOLIDARITY NETWORK (DSN)
VOICE OF DALIT INTERNATIONAL (VODI)
Invites you join the Vigil
GLOBAL ACTION DAY
Place: India High Commission, Aldwych, London
Date & Time: 2nd July 2001, 1-2 p.m.
A unanimous resolution to address caste issue in the WCAR. A global action has been proposed by the NCDHR at the Asia/ Pacific Region at the Kathmandu NGO Network meeting and it was unanimously accepted. In response to the resolution DSN and VODI have jointly arranged a Global Action Day vigil on July 2nd 2001, in front of the India High Commission, London. The single demand is – Address caste issue in the WCAR agenda.
Dalit organisations and human rights groups in the UK are committed to the inclusion of Caste based discrimination on the agenda, the declaration and the programme of action of the World Conference Against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance (WCAR), to be held at Durban, South Africa, from August 31 – September 8, 2001.
We, strongly condemns the attempts of the government of India to oppose the inclusion of Caste –based discrimination in the agenda of the WCAR in spite of the assertion by the UN Committee for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination that caste based discrimination is a form of racial discrimination.
We seek your solidarity and urge to join your hands with us, it is an urgent matter of basic justice, to support the inclusion of caste-based discrimination in the WCAR agenda, despite the pressure exerted by India in particular, home to hundreds of millions of out castes.
(Temple or Charing Cross is the nearest tube station to Aldwych)
Place: In front of the Indian Embassy, Washington, DC
Date & Time: 3rd July 2001, 10 a.m. -4.30 p.m.
For more information contact:
Dr.Laxmi Narain Berwa,
Virginia, U.S.A. 22102-2921
Global Day of Action Against Caste
·After 3,000 years of oppression under the caste system….
Their lives ruled by hidden apartheid and Untouchability….
Their occupations determined by their birth….
Their children denied education….
Finally, there is an opportunity to address this form of discrimination affecting 1 in every 25 people on the planet – 250 million people throughout South Asia, Japan and parts of Africa – through the UN World Conference Against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance being held in South Africa in August – September 2001
….but the Indian government is doing everything possible to exclude the issue. It is apparently far too embarrassing for the world’s largest democracy to be keeping 200 million of its people in a permanently oppressed state.
Don’t let them get away with it.
Don’t let this opportunity slip through our fingers.
Don’t let the most oppressed people on earth be ignored once again.
That the World Conference Against Racism addresses caste discrimination
It’s a simple and reasonable demand. The UN’s own committees have already stated that it fits ‘squarely’ into this conference, but you won’t find the word ‘caste’ anywhere in the documents being drafted now. We demand that this must change, and that those suffering from caste discrimination be given their human right to a life of dignity.
JOIN THE GLOBAL ACTION TO BREAK THE SILENCE!
– go to your Indian Embassy/Consulate on July 2-3
The Global Day of Action against Caste
July 2-3, 2001
Note for Organisers #1
Why a Global Day of Action?
The caste issue has been systematically excluded from discussion at the World Conference Against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance (WCAR) to be held in South Africa in August 2001. This is despite assertions by the CERD, Sub-commission on human rights, and other UN bodies that caste discrimination is a distinct form of racial discrimination on the basis of work and descent. The Indian government does not want its reputation tarnished by the world finding out that 200 million of its people experience permanent discrimination from birth, and so has undertaken every means possible to prevent the issue from being raised. We need to make it known that this issue needs to be raised at the international level.
What do we have to do?
Just get as many people as possible to the Indian Embassy or Consulate (or other appropriate place or landmark) in as many countries as possible on the same day to say ‘We demand caste be included in WCAR’
How to organise it?
Get an organiser in each city where an event will be held.
Get people there – phone up friends, trade unions, political parties, community organisations, hand out pamphlets, etc.
Make an agenda for the event, eg.
11.00am Make placards
1.00pm Have lunch – gather at the restaurant
2.00pm Gather at the city monument
2.30pm March to the Indian Embassy
3.00pm Gather at the Embassy
3.15pm Speeches – Dalit representative; trade union representative, local politician
3.30pm Hand over demand letter to Indian embassy
4.00pm Press Conference