The Dalit community in Bangladesh has urged the government to enact a special law that makes caste discrimination a punishable offence.
Dalits demonstrated in the Bangladeshi capital on 5 December to mark World Dignity Day and International Human Rights Day.
Forming a human chain in front of the National Museum, they called for an end to caste discrimination and prejudice. The event was organised by Bangladesh Dalit and Excluded Rights Movement (BDERM) and Bangladesh Dalit Human Rights (BDHR) with support from Nagorik Uddyog (‘Citizen’s Initiative’).
According to the Daily Star, BDERM chairman Mukul Sikdar said that Dalits are deprived of human rights and forced to live a dejected and isolated life. He added that the society needs Dalits to do all the menial work but refuses to meet their basic needs.
Among the participants in the human chain were Zakir Hossain, chief executive of Nagorik Uddyog, researcher Mazharul Islam and BDERM leaders B Solomon, Moni Rani Das, Master Kanai Lal and Banani Biswas.