Landmark UN guidance tool on caste discrimination launched in Kathmandu

In a historic event in Kathmandu, the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) launched a comprehensive guidance tool addressing caste-based discrimination. The tool is meant to support UN country teams, agencies and other stakeholders in combatting caste-based discrimination and has been welcomed by UN stakeholders as well as human rights activists across the world. […]

Report: Dalit workers in India’s leather industry suffer serious rights abuses

The report, ‘Do leather workers matter? Violating labour rights and environmental norms in India’s leather production’, is based on background and field research at three production hubs that supply hides, leather, garments, accessories and footwear for export.

Rights violations mentioned in the report include wages below the stipulated minimum, unacceptable health risks […]

Bangladesh must step up efforts to address caste discrimination say rights activists at UN review

Ahead of the review IDSN, NNMC and BDERM submitted an alternative report to the Committee, documenting how the Dalit population in Bangladesh continues to be exposed to systemic discrimination based on caste. The report also highlights the most prevalent forms of discrimination against Dalits, including restrictions in their access to adequate housing, land, water and sanitation, and […]

UPR 2017 recommendations: Caste discrimination in India and the UK

Ahead of the reviews fact sheets and UPR submissions concerning the situation of Dalits in the two countries have been prepared. The reviews are in place to examine the extent to which the two countries are upholding their international commitments on human rights. Dalit rights activists and organisations are urging states to act on holding both governments accountable to their […]

EU states its commitment to civil society and human rights defenders

The statement issued on the 27 February includes the following passages:

“There has been a backlash against civil society over the past years as governments, in a significant number of countries, seek to suppress opposition or criticism, with a clear trend towards an increasingly restricted space for independent civil society, as well as outright threats made against individuals and organisations.

The EU is firmly opposed to […]

UN Expert Report: India must act on access to adequate housing for Dalits

The report cites Government statistics revealing that Dalits on average live in lower quality housing, made with inadequate materials compared to the general population and finds the lack of access for Dalits to latrines, at 66%, particularly alarming.

The report states that the manual removing of human excrements from dry latrines, known […]

Report: Widespread child slavery in India’s yarn industry, most victims are Dalits

The India Committee on the Netherlands (ICN) report  ‘Fabric of Slavery – Large-scale forced (child) labour in India’s spinning mills’ shows that various forms of modern slavery, including child slavery, are found in more than 90% of the spinning mills in South India. These spinning mills produce yarn for […]

India blocks funding for IDSN member Navsarjan Trust

The Government order to cancel the license accuses Navsarjan Trust of being involved in “undesirable activities aimed to affect prejudicially harmony between religious, racial, social, linguistic, regional groups, castes or communities,” but it does not offer any concrete examples or evidence for this claim.

The revocation of the license is the latest […]

European Parliament report calls for EU policy on caste discrimination

The report, released by the EP Committee on Foreign Affairs, states that the European Parliament is ”deeply concerned by the alarming rate of caste-based violent attacks on Dalits and of institutionalised discrimination with impunity,” and condemns, “continuing human rights violations committed against people suffering from caste hierarchies and caste-based discrimination, including the denial of equality and of access to […]

(In)Equality in Aid discussed at the 9th session of the Forum on Minority Issues

The 9th session of the Forum on Minority Issues (the Forum) was held last week, on 24 and 25 November 2016, focusing on the situation of minorities in humanitarian crises. The Forum provides a unique opportunity for state representatives, experts, civil society and minority communities, and specialised bodies to engage in a constructive dialogue and seek ways to strengthen […]