Caste at the Human Rights Council’s 33 session

The United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC) commenced its 33rd session on 13 September. This year the report of the Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, including its causes and consequences has a thematic focus on debt bondage. The rapporteur notes that “the majority of those in debt bondage are reported to be in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and […]

Caste discrimination in the United Kingdom

On 28 August 2016, as a part of the regular review process, the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) published its concluding observations to the UK. The Committee expressed its concern that several provisions of the Equality Act 2010 have not yet been brought into legal effect, including Section 9(5)(a) on caste-based discrimination’. Once again the UK […]

Indian Government under attack for atrocities against Dalits

The Indian government has come under attack for atrocities against Dalits. In a debate on Dalit atrocities in the Indian Parliament (Lok Sabha) on Thursday, Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh  disputed claims of increasing rates of crime against Dalits in India, since Modi’s government took charge. The parliamentary debate was held after a series of violent attacks on […]

MEPs make caste appeal to EU foreign policy chief

The European Union should step up its efforts to address caste discrimination at the multilateral level as well as in its direct relations with caste-affected states. It should also integrate the issue into its fight against all forms of discrimination and include caste-specific indicators in its efforts to implement the Sustainable Development Goals.

This is the message from 21 MEPs […]

Millions of Dalit Muslims face caste discrimination

The caste-related problems of India’s Dalit Muslims are rarely addressed, neither by the government nor their own religious community. Contrary to Dalit Hindus, Sikhs and Buddhists, they are not classified in the ‘scheduled caste’ category, but the fact remains that they often face similar types of discrimination as fellow Dalits of other religious backgrounds.

This has yet again been confirmed […]

UN expert supports IDSN at Human Rights Council

The obstruction of IDSN’s application for consultative status at the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) was discussed at the UN Human Rights Council on 17 June when the Special Rapporteur on the freedom of assembly and association, Maina Kiai, presented his thematic report on fundamentalism.

“Let me use the example of the International Dalit Solidarity Network which applied for […]

Infamous NGO Committee excludes human rights defenders from the UN

COPENHAGEN, 1 JUNE — The UN Committee on NGOs has become infamous as a tool of states that do not respect human rights and civil society. The Committee’s practice of repeatedly deferring NGO applications for consultative status with the UN has reached such an alarming extent that it undermines global human rights, the International Dalit Solidarity Network said today.

At […]

IDSN cited as example of obstruction against NGOs

ecosoc_logo-jpgIn an unprecedented move, NGOs from around the world have joined forces to defend freedom of association at the United Nations. In a letter to ECOSOC member states, they have expressed concern about the long-term practice of some States to block UN accreditation for NGOs.

This practice has turned the ECOSOC […]

HRW urges India to stop treating critics as criminals

The Indian authorities use the country’s “vaguely worded, overly broad laws” to silence and harass critics, Human Rights Watch says in a new report released today. Dalit activists and artists are among the victims of such policies.

“India’s abusive laws are the hallmark of a repressive society, not a vibrant democracy,” the organisation’s South Asia director, Meenakshi Ganguly, said as […]

Global conference urged to discuss rights of 300 million Dalit and indigenous women

COPENHAGEN, 11 MAY 2016 — When leaders and activists from all over the world gather in Copenhagen next week to focus on the health and human rights of girls and women, their discussions must include two large groups that suffer extreme social exclusion and marginalisation, the International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs (IWGIA) and the International Dalit Solidarity Network […]