Recommendations for the 49th Regular Session of the Human Rights Council

In connection with their participation in the 49th Human Rights Council session, states are encouraged to consider the ongoing and systemic practice of discrimination based on work and descent, also known as caste-based discrimination, affecting over 260 million people globally.

Caste discrimination affects an estimated 260 million people worldwide, the vast majority living in South Asia. It involves massive violations […]

Statement: India Should Stop Using Abusive Foreign Funding Law: End Harassment Against People’s Watch, Other Rights Groups

(Geneva, January 18, 2022) – The Indian government should immediately stop harassing the Centre for Promotion of Social Concerns and its program unit People’s Watch, nine human rights groups said today. The government should stop using the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act and other abusive laws to silence civil society in India.

The groups are Amnesty International, Asian Forum […]

European Parliament calls for the EU to intensify efforts at the UN to eliminate caste discrimination 

The International Dalit Solidarity Network (IDSN) welcomes the adoption of the European Parliament’s annual report on human rights and democracy in the world and the European Union’s policy on the matter.

The European Parliament’s report “Notes with great concern the scale and consequences of caste hierarchies, caste-based discrimination and the perpetuation of caste-based human rights violations, including the denial of […]

New report and symposium charts pathways towards access to justice for Dalit defenders in Pakistan

The symposium “Challenges to effective legal remedies for Dalit and Minorities’ defenders in Pakistan and proposed solution to those challenges” was organised in Pakistan to discuss and launch the Pakistan report of the Dalit Justice Defenders Reports – an initiative by the International Commission on Dalit Rights (ICDR). Participants and speakers discussed issues of Pakistani Dalit rights […]

Dalit rights defenders speak out on caste at the EU-NGO Forum

Economic, social and labour rights were the thematic headlines of this year’s EU-NGO Human Rights Forum, where three Dalit human rights defenders were featured as panellists, facilitated by IDSN. Caste-related barriers to healthcare in Pakistan, post-covid economic and social recovery for Dalit workers in South Asia and building corporate accountability to respect human rights were among the key topics […]

Nepal: UN Poverty Expert says caste discrimination is “the single most important factor” explaining why Dalits are disproportionately affected by poverty

“Though banned, caste-based and ethnicity-based discrimination remain a reality in social life, and it is a major factor explaining the perpetuation of poverty,” De Schutter commented in the press release issued.

“Land issues remain unresolved, despite the efforts to accelerate the rehabilitation of former bonded laborers and to ensure landless Dalit benefit from land redistribution.”

The UN expert met with […]

Global forum addresses the caste and sanitation work nexus

The links between caste and hazardous forms of sanitation work were highlighted by speakers at the Sanitation Workers Forum 2021 from 29 November – 2 December. Participants at the forum urged that immediate steps are taken to ensure the safety and dignity of millions of sanitation workers worldwide – and ensure social protections.

Joining together for a four-day virtual event, […]

Caste and human rights in supply chains raised at UN Forum

IDSN participated in the UN Forum on Business and Human Rights from 29 November – 1 December, learning and drawing attention to the urgent need to address caste discrimination and violence in global supply chains.

IDSN took part in many sessions including on gender mainstreaming, tech regulation, mandatory human rights and environmental due […]

UN slavery expert raises concern over caste discrimination in Sri Lanka

IDSN welcomes the attention to an often hidden issue in Sri Lanka.

In his end of mission press statement Mr. Obokata stated:

“I also wish to raise the issue of caste-based discrimination which reportedly persists in Sri Lanka. In the Northern Province, for instance, many belonging to oppressed castes are not able to obtain suitable land to start an agricultural business […]

Brief: Dalit women face violence and harassment in India’s garment industry – time to act

Brief and recommendations in relation to the UN Forum on Business and Human Rights – 29 November- 1 December

The rape and murder of a 20-year-old Dalit factory worker has attracted attention to poor working conditions and caste- and gender-based inequalities in India’s garment industry.

On New Year’s Day 2021, Jeyasre Kathiravel, a 20-year-old Dalit garment worker from Tamil Nadu, India, […]