Nation Other News 11 Aug 2022 Dalit Christians hol ...

Dalit Christians hold Black Day seeking SC status

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | DC CORRESPONDENT
Published Aug 11, 2022, 8:27 pm IST
Updated Aug 11, 2022, 8:27 pm IST
On the occasion, Dalit Christian leaders paid floral tributes to Dr. Ambedkar statue.(DC Image)
 On the occasion, Dalit Christian leaders paid floral tributes to Dr. Ambedkar statue.(DC Image)

VIJAYAWADA: Dalit Christians in Andhra Pradesh observed Wednesday as Black Day as part of their nationwide protest demanding re-recognition of Dalit Christians as members of the scheduled castes in India.

The Black Day was organised under the joint auspices of AP Federation of Churches and Vijayawada Dalit Christian Associations at Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Statue in Vijayawada on Wednesday morning.

Vijayawada Catholic Diocese Most Reverend Monsignor Father Muvvala Prasad recalled that on August 10, 1950, the then union government issued a President's Order cancelling the SC status of Dalit Christians and Dalit Muslims. But in the same year, Sikh Dalits had been granted SC status, while Buddhist Dalits got SC status in 1996.

Father Prasad said this is nothing but showing bias against Dalit Christians. He wondered whether caste will change if a person changes his religion. He pointed out that in 2004, a writ petition (180/2004) had been filed in Supreme Court against the central government pointing to the discrimination. In response, the central government formed a special commission in 2005 under retired chief justice Ranganath Mishra.

In 2007, the Ranganath Mishra Commission submitted its report clarifying that denial of SC status to Dalit Christians and Dalit Muslims amounts to constitutional discrimination and is a violation of fundamental rights.

Father Prasad demanded that a constitutional bench of Supreme Court must now rule on Dalit Christians being members of the scheduled castes and do justice.
Vijayawada YSR Congress urban president Boppana Bhavakumar said he will bring the matter to the attention of Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy and ensure that justice is done to Dalit Christians.

On the occasion, Dalit Christian leaders paid floral tributes to Dr. Ambedkar statue. CSI representatives pastor Pakalapati Prabhakara Rao, pastor I. Karunanidhi, leaders Gummadi Vijayakumar, Bandi Baburao, G. Alex and Korukonda Ashok Kumar were among those who participated in the programme.

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