Discrimination against ‘scheduled caste’ Hindus continues in Pakistan, Low Caste Hindu Women and Kids Being Sexploited in Pakistan
Posted by hinduexistence on March 25, 2010
Source : http://www.medindia.net/news ||Tuesday,March23,2010
A new study has found that the Hindus belonging to lower castes are unofficially declared as “untouchables” and are given a second-grade-citizen treatment. Their kids are made to clean the school premises and are forced to sit on back benches.
The study also found that Hindu women belonging to scheduled castes were the most vulnerable and considered “sexually available by men” of Muslim-dominated communities. Since the SC Hindus are economically weaker with no social support or political leverage in the community, their young women/ girls were lured into matrimony or abducted and wed through forced conversions.
“The abduction of young scheduled caste women is frequent and often reported in regional newspapers. And they are kidnapped or lured and then used sexually and sometimes abandoned after being kept in custody,” found the study.
According to the study findings, the “untouchable” Hindus were denied barber services and offered food and drink in separate crockery.
The report of the research carried out by the ‘Long Behind Schedule’ on caste-based discrimination in Pakistan, was released at the Karachi Press Club last evening.
“In schools, scheduled caste students are obliged to sit on back seats
, leaving the front seats for students from non-scheduled castes. Though they are not asked to do it on a regular basis, the practice has been in place for so long that it has become a custom. Scheduled caste students are also made to clean the schools,” the Daily Times quoted the study findings as saying.
The study was conducted in two districts of Sindh – Tharparkar and Umerkot – and two district of the Punjab – Rahimyar Khan and Bahawalpur – for one year. Besides, a survey was also conducted on 750 households.
The study was conducted on behalf of the International Solidarity Network (ISDN) and Indian Institute of Dalit Studies (IIDS) in collaboration with the Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research (PILER) and Thardeep Rural Development Programme (TRDP).
An overwhelming majority (79 percent) of the scheduled caste population said in reply to the survey’s questionnaire that they faced discriminatory treatment of one kind or another and the situation is the worst in southern Punjab. And, 69 percent of those surveyed said that their upper caste Hindu and Muslim neighbours either did not invite them to their social gatherings such as weddings, or if invited, they were served food separately.
This attitude was relatively more prevalent in Rahimyar Khan (87 percent) than in Tharparkar (60 percent), found the survey.
Source : http://www.nation.com.pk ||Monday,March22,2010
ISLAMABAD – Discriminatory attitude of the general public as well as Hindus’ upper caste towards ‘schedule caste’ Hindus is allegedly practised in different parts of the country as issues of separate eating pots in hotels; denial of culling at barbers shops and restricted permission of worship at Hindu temples are major contributory malpractices.
Among the 640 Hindu families including Bheel, Manghwal, Balmeeki, Aaria around, 527 families complained that they had to use separate pots in hotels in their vicinities and around 328 families said that they even could not visit the temple for worship, according to a survey conducted by ‘Scheduled Caste Rights Movement’ (SCRM) Pakistan.
The survey was conducted in different parts of the country – Lahore, Rawalpindi, Rahimyar Khan, Bahawalnager, Multan, Norowal and Bahawalpur – where scheduled caste Hindus are living in large numbers. The Survey was conducted among the members of the upper caste including Thakar and others who simply do not allow the lower caste Hindus to visit and worship in the Hindu temples,” said Chairman of Scheduled Caste Movement Ramesh Jaipal, while talking to TheNation.
Senator Khatu Mal Jeewan, however, said that the discriminatory trend was fast decreasing. “Though still it is somewhere in the rural areas yet the discrimination has very much decreased in the urban areas,” he said.
It is relevant to note here that the term “scheduled castes” emerged in political and constitutional history of Pakistan on November 12, 1957, when the Ministry of Law issued a presidential ordinance to declare certain non-Muslim castes as “scheduled castes.” While the Survey conducted by SCRM showed that children of “scheduled caste” Hindus ‘living in different vicinities are facing discrimination as out of 640 surveyed families 395 families complained of discriminatory attitude while children of around 124 “are not going to school due to different reasons including poverty, less trend of education.”
Among 640 surveyed families, 440 families complained that they had no right of culling from barber’s shop in their cities while 200 families said that they had no problem of culling in their vicinities.
Courtesy : PHP.