The Human Rights Committee, monitoring the implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (CCPR), August 2014 review of Japan raised concern for discrimination against the Buraku* people in Japan, with particular attention paid to Buraku women
In the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), review of India on 2nd July 2014, the issues of Dalit women and girls were brought up by several experts of the Committee and the Committee noted that Dalit women and the lack of implementation of laws were matters of serious concern.
IDSN has joined other NGOs in sending an open letter to the ECOSOC members calling on them to take measures to stop the Committee on NGOs' members from blocking legitimate human rights organisations from gaining ECOSOC status.
Report on the UN Human Rights Council 26th session, 17th June 2014, side-event on 'Caste-based violence against women: The role of the UN in combatting caste-based violence and discrimination'.
Global day of action to end caste discrimination – marches in London, Washington DC, San Francisco and India
The 21st of June has been marked as a global day of action to end caste discrimination and marches were carried out in London, Washington DC, San Francisco and India on this day. In London, a letter was presented to Prime Minister David Cameron, calling for action on enacting caste legislation in the UK, on caste-based rape and on endorsing the draft UN Principles and Guidelines for the Effective Elimination of Discrimination based on Work and Descent (UN P&Gs). In Washington DC protesters picketed outside the Capitol demanding that Congress pass a binding resolution mandating action by US agencies in caste-affected countries and asking the US Government to take action on caste discrimination by endorsing the UN P&Gs. In other cities, protesters marked their solidarity with the global march by gathering and marching with placards and holding speeches.
A group of Dalit activists met Ms. Navi Pillay to express their gratitude for her unwavering commitment to support them in their struggle to end caste-based discrimination, during her tenure, which ends in August 2014.
Side Event Highlights Need for Concrete Action
The case of the rape and hanging of two girls in Badaun, Uttar Pradesh, widely reported to be Dalits, has caused a global media storm of reports on rape and violence against women in India and the strong links to caste discrimination. Numerous stories have highlighted that India’s ‘rape culture’ and ‘culture of impunity’ will not end until caste discrimination is tackled head on. Leading Human Rights NGOs and the UN have also made statements.
On Tuesday 17th June the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms. Navi Pillay, will give the opening statement at a side-event on caste-based violence against women, at the UN Human Rights Council. The event comes following a series of brutal rape cases against Dalit women and the rape and hanging of two teenage cousins in India.
Within the span of a month the urgent issue of caste discrimination has been highlighted by the UN Special Rapporteur on Rights to Freedom of Assembly, The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, and the UNDP. Earlier this year the Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women also reported grave concern for Dalit women.