The National Confederation of Dalit Organisations (NACDOR) has submitted a memorandum to Indian PM Manmohan Singh. The 80 demands are aimed at empowering the poor and deprived.

Socially excluded groups from all over India took part in the rally. Photo: BETHAN COBLEY

Dalits and other socially excluded groups rallied in the Indian capital last weekend to mark World Dignity Day and demand equal participation in society. On the eve of the march, NACDOR presented a charter of demandsto Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

The list of demands included quotas for Dalits (Scheduled Castes) and indigenous people (Scheduled Tribes) in public sector undertakings, corporate and private sectors and proper implementation of the 1989 atrocities act, special housing schemes for Dalits all over India and representation of Dalits in Radio, TV and print media.

”Government’s duty does not end with the formulation of policy. Its implementation is also the duty of the government. But the government has hitherto failed to deliver. Its conduct is not up to the mark,” NACDOR chairman Ashok Bharti said at the rally, according to the UNI news agency.

NACDOR also proposes compensation to Dalits and other groups affected by climate change including changing patterns and reduction of rainfalls, floods, droughts etc.

The rally took place on Saturday 5 December – a day after the demands had been presented to Prime Minister Singh and on the eve of the death anniversary of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar.

NACDOR memorandum to the Prime Minister