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Hidden Apartheid: Caste Discrimination against India’s “Untouchables

Hidden Apartheid: Caste Discrimination against India’s “Untouchables

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Published by woodstockwoody
Although India was the first country to declare economic sanctions against apartheid South Africa....caste and caste discrimination remains firmly planted in India
Although India was the first country to declare economic sanctions against apartheid South Africa....caste and caste discrimination remains firmly planted in India

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Published by: woodstockwoody on Jun 22, 2010
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05/12/2014

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H U M A NR I G H T SW A T C H
India
Hidden Apartheid
Caste Discrimination against India’s “Untouchables”
Shadow Report to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
 
 
Hidden Apartheid 
was produced as a “shadow report” to the UN Committee on theElimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD), in advance of its February 2007 considerationof a report by the government of India.CERD is a body of independent experts responsible for monitoring states’ compliance withthe International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination. Indiaratified the Convention in 1968. The Convention guarantees rights of non-discrimination onthe basis of “race, colour, descent, or national or ethnic origin.” In 1996, CERD concludedthat the plight of Dalits falls squarely under the prohibition of descent-based discrimination.As a state party to the Convention, India is obliged to submit periodic reports detailing itsimplementation of rights guaranteed under the Convention. During the review session CERDexamines these reports and engages in constructive dialogue with the state party,addressing its concerns and offering recommendations in the form of “ConcludingObservations.” As part of this process, CERD uses supplementary or alternative informationcontained in non-governmental organization “shadow reports” to effectively evaluatestates’ reports.The India report being considered by CERD in February 2007 (the report was more than eightyears overdue when it was submitted) covers more than a decade of India’s compliancewith the Convention (from 1996 to 2006) yet does not contain a single mention of abusesagainst Dalits—abuses that India’s own governmental agencies have documented andverified. This report fills that gap and presents CERD members with information that webelieve is essential to a fair assessment of India’s record and, ultimately, to encouragingthe government to live up to its treaty obligations.
 
 February 2007 Volume 19, No. 3 (C)
Hidden Apartheid
Caste Discrimination against India’s “Untouchables”
Glossary.............................................................................................................................1
 
I. Summary List of the Critical Issues Pertaining to India’s Periodic Report to the Committeeon the Elimination of Racial Discrimination................................................................2
 
Article 1.........................................................................................................................3
 
Article 2.........................................................................................................................4
 
Article 3.........................................................................................................................7
 
Article 4.........................................................................................................................7
 
Article 5.........................................................................................................................8
 
Article 6........................................................................................................................15
 
Article 7.......................................................................................................................16
 
II. Authors of the Report....................................................................................................17
 
III. Scope of the Report.....................................................................................................19
 
Sources Used in this Report.........................................................................................20
 
Availability of Information from the Government of India..............................................21
 
IV. Response to India’s denial of ICERD’s prohibition of discrimination on the basis of caste.................................................................................................................................22
 
 V. Article 2: States Parties’ obligation to end caste-based discrimination.........................26
 
A.
 
Condemn caste discrimination and undertake to pursue by all appropriate meansa policy of eliminating caste discrimination......................................................26
 
B.
 
Ensure the development and protection of certain groups or individualsbelonging to them............................................................................................38
 
 VI. Article 3: Prevent, prohibit and eradicate caste-based segregation.............................45
 
A.
 
Segregated housing colonies for Dalits.............................................................45
 
B.
 
Segregation in relief camps..............................................................................46
 
C.
 
Segregation in schools.....................................................................................46
 
D.
 
Segregation in public life..................................................................................46
 

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