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Black and Blue: A Short Story by Saunvedan Aparanti

July 28, 2016

This is a guest post by SAUNVEDAN APARANTI

[Based on Gujarat Dalit flogging. It chronicles the fictionalised life of one of the victims.]

What comes to your mind when you think of India? If you’ve been seduced by films, books, pictures and anglophile Indians over the last century then you will no doubt paint a happy picture. You might romanticise the poor yet happy people, the colours, the cuisine, the attire, the mystics, the music, the dance, the cacophony, the heat and the sensory overload of this one country. The only colour missing in your picture will be any shade of black because black is a colour that India hides.Black is a colour that India detests whether it be the colour of your skin or the colour of the sewer that you’re lowered in. A bottomless pit is where you will find the true colour of India. Read more…

Eminent Citizens of Gujarat Demand Judicial Inquiry into Attacks on Dalits in Una

July 27, 2016

The following is a Memorandum to the Governor of Gujarat, initiated by statement issued by the Movement for Secular Democracy and signed by many eminent personalities in the state, demanding a judicial inquiry into the attacks on Dalits in Una by cow-vigilantes. The memorandum was sent on 16 July 2016.

(079) 26404418


C/o. Narmad Meghani Library, Opp. Natraj Railway Crossing, Meethakhali, Ahmedabad- 380 006.

Date: 14-7-2016



The Honourable Governor,



Sub: Appointing a Judicial Commission for the Investigation in the Matter of Atrocities on Dalits in Una of Gir Somnath District


Dear Sir,

It is a matter of pain that when the entire nation is celebrating 125th Birth anniversary of Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar, the Gujarat has created a precedent of atrocities on Dalits!

We, the undersigned, strongly condemn the ghastly incident of atrocities on four Dalit youth in Una of Geer Somnath district. We demand to immediately appoint Judicial Commission for the investigation of the entire matter.

We would also like to draw your attention towards the fact that there has been continuous rise in the incidents of atrocities on dalits in Gujarat. We place below the statistics of atrocities on dalits according to a report:


Further, there has been 20 cases of killings of dalits as well as 50 cases of rapes on dalit women every year in Gujarat. These statistics are quiet shocking and very serious.

Under the circumstances, We, on behalf of Movement for Secular Democracy, demand to appoint Judicial Commission to investigate the incident of Una. Along with that we also demand:

  • The Chief of the Police and Administration of those districts which are defamed for atrocities on women should be punished.
  • The Police administration should be made free from any kind of caste discrimination, prejudices, etc.
  • Sensitise Police and administration towards the socially underpriviledged section of the society.

 We are the signatories




Prakash N. Shah                                  Girishbhai Patel                                                Dwarikanath Rath

Convenor, M.S.D.                                           Well known advocate                                                   Secretary, M.S.D.

Dr. Mallika Sarabhai                  Prof. Ghanshyam Shah                                              Gautam Thaker

Danseuse and activist                                    Social analyst                                    General Secretary, Gujarat, P.U.C.L.

Soli Sorabji                                       Prof. Upendra Baxi                                           Dr. Anamik Shah

(Former Attorney General)                   (Former Vice Chancellor)                 Vice Chancellor, Gujarat Vidyapeeth

Prof. Rohit Shukla                                        Prof. K.S. Shastri                                                           Prof. Makarand Mehta

President, Gujarat Chapter, AISEC          Former Vice Chancellor                                               Retired Professor

Dr. Vidhyut Joshi                                          Prof. Dhaval Mehta                                                     Advocate Ami Yagnik

Former Vice Chancellor                               Retired Professor

Prof. Ramesh B. Shah                                  Prof. Hirubhai Bhatt                                                    Dr. Pushpa Motiyani

Retired Professor                                             Retired Principal                              Head, Gandhi Peace Research Centre

Advocate Mahendra Anand                    Dr. Swati Joshi                                                                Dr. J.S. Bandukwala

Retired Professor                                                             Activist

Dr. Alaknanda Patel                                    Rajni Dave                                                                        Siddharth N. Bhatt

Retired Professor, M.S.University            Sarvodaya activist                                                          Retired Professor

Indukumar Jani                                             Dr. Bharat Mehta                                                         Dr. Kanu Khadadiya

Editor, Naya Marg                                          Reader, M. S. University                                              Associate Professor

Amit Dave                                                         Bipin Shroff                                                                      Dr. Damini Shah

Gujarati Lekhak Mandal                              Editor, Vaishwik Manavvaad                                    Lecturer

Loknad                                                               Dr. Raghu Rangarajan                                              Father Francis Parmar

                                                                                Scientist                                                                               Retired Principal

Dr. Saroop Dhruv                                        Dr. Ganesh Devy                                                           Dhiru Mistry

Well Known poetess                                     Retired Professor and activist                                    Activist

Dr. Rita Kothari                                            Dr. Hanif Lakdawala                                  Hiren Gandhi 

Professor                                                             Activist                                                                                Activist

Kiran Trivedi                                                  Sagar Rabari                                                                   Persis Ginwala

Activist                                                                Activist                                                                                Activist

Ashok Shrimali                                              Mahesh Pandya                                                             Urvish Kothari

Activist                                                                Activist                                                                                Columnist

Bhargav Trivedi                                            Nandu Deshpande                                                         Ramya Rangrajan

Journalist                                                            Union Activist                                                                  Activist

Sandesh Gonsalves                                       Shabnam Hashmi                                                          Justice V. H. Bhardwaj

Director, PRASHANT                   Anhad

Jagdish Patel                                                   Ratilal Desai                                                                    Meenakshi Joshi

Activist                                                                Activist                                                                                Women activist

Johannes Manjrekar                                  Chinu Srinivasan                                                           Ashok Gupta

Professor                                                             Activist                                                                                Activist

Deeptha Achar                                               Nikitan Contractor                                                      Santosh Das

Professor                                                             Activist                                                                                Professor

Rajkumar Hans                                             Iftikhar Ahmed                                                              Illiyas Mansuri

Professor                                                             Professor                                                                             Activist

Babubhai Desai                              Tapan Dasgupta                                                Sanjay Bhave

Retired Principal                                              Activist                                                                                Associate Professor

Jayanti Panchal                                             N. R. Malik                                                                       Ikram Mirza

Activist                                                                Concerned Citizen                                                          Activist

Jatin Sheth                                                        Lalubha Chauhan                                                         Rasik R. Shah

Activist                                                                Concerned Citizen                                                          Concerned Citizen

Rajesh Shah                                                     Nitaben Vidrohi                                                             Sahil Parmar

Activist                                                                Gujarat Lok Samiti                                                         Activist

Jayanti Barot                                                  Tanushree Gangopadhyay                                       S.G. Mehta

Activist                                                                Journalist                                                                            Concerned Citizen

Kalpesh Solanki                                             Rakesh Maheriya                                                         Sukhdev Patel

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Activist

Buddhidhan Trivedi                                     Chittaranjan Vora                                                       Dhanraj Pandit

Concerned Citizen                                          Educationist                                                                      Retired Principal

Prahladray Avasthi                                     Prof. I.H. Parikh                                                            Jwalant Mehta

Concerned Citizen                                                                                                                                          Activist

Dr. L.S. Kareliya                                            Advocate Suresh Zumkhawala                              Mahadev Vidrohi

Activist                                                                                                                                                                Activist

Kamla Gurjar                                                Vipul Pandya                                                                   B. M. Desai

Activist                                                                Activist                                                                                Concerned Citizen

Chimanbhai Khamar                  Mayur H. Shah                                                               Jayesh Patel

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Youth activist

Tejas Vaidhya                                 Nalla Daru                                                                        Valjibhai Patel

Journalist                                                            Activist                                                                                Activist

Nibha M. Anand                                             Manilal M. Patel                                                            Chandu Maheriya

Activist                                                                Columnist                                                                           Activist

Binit Modi                                                         Manda Patel                                                                    Mehul Trivedi

Activist                                                                Activist                                                                                Activist

Shailesh A. Sonara                                        Parul Trivedi                                                                   K. L. Virani

Dalit Activist                                                     Communicator                                                                 Concerned Citizen

Raman Vaghela                                             P.V. Chauhan                                                   Ramaben Vora

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Activist

Pradip K. Shah                                                Mohan Chaudhari                                                        Siddharaj Solanki

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Concerned Citizen

Advocate V.A. Isani                                     Dev Desai                                                                          Prof. A.A. Shaikh


Dinesh A. Shah                                                Avani Vora                                                                       Dashrath Devda

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Activist

Rajesh Thakkar                                            Abdulbhai Vakani                                                         Dilip R. Joshi

Concerned Citizen                                          Activist                                                                                Concerned Citizen

Devvrat N. Trivedi                                       Kanaiyalal Nayak                                                        Prakash Chaudhri

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Activist

Gopal K. Nayak                                             Devesh Mehta                                                 Ashish Mehta

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Concerned Citizen

Shankarlal Gandhi                                       N.A. Purani                                                                       C. P. Patel

Concerned Citizen                                          Retired Professor                                                             Concerned Citizen

Kishor Thaker                                                Suresh Chauhan                                                             Amrutbhai Patel

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Concerned Citizen

Rajni Acharya                                                Becharbhai Patel                                                           Dalubhai Bharwad

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Concerned Citizen

Jitendra Shah                                                  Gopal Bhatt                                                                      Rajendra Parmar

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Concerned Citizen

V.D. Brahmabhatt                                        Umesh Shah                                                                     Timir V. Amin

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Concerned Citizen

Jitendra Shah                                                  S.N. Dulera                                                                        Pravin Pandya

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Writer

Nirad Vidrohi                                  Jayanti Naik                                                                    Vasant Brahmabhatt

Activist                                                                Concerned Citizen                                                          Concerned Citizen

  1. D. Gandhi Nitinkumar Barad Nirmitsingh

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Concerned Citizen

Rameshbhai Borisa                                      Nikunj Patel                                                                     Jashubhai Chaudhari

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Concerned Citizen

Zubin Dinyar                                                   Jigar Bhatt                                                                       Rimmi Vaghela

Concerned Citizen                                          Activist                                                                                Student Leader

Inderjeet Grover                           Renu Rajput                                                                     Honey Parmar

Youth Activist                                                  Women Activist                                                              Concerned Citizen

Rammurat Maurya                                     Dimpa Vaghela                                                              Mayur Thakre

Union Activist                                                  Student Activist                                                               Concerned Citizen

Bhavik Raja                                                     Dilip Satashiya                                                       Pratima Sagar

Student Leader                                 Youth activist                                                                   Women Activist

Suryaben Shah                                                Reeta Gohil                                                                      Mahendra Rathod

Concerned Citizen                                          Concerned Citizen                                                          Student Activist

Sachin Shah                                                                                                                                                      Niraj Maurya

Student Activist                                                                                                                                               Student Activist



Memorandom sent by Dwarikanath Rath (Mo. 94263 69858),


Copy to : (1) National Commission For Scheduled Caste (2) District Collector, Gir-Somnath (3) S. P., Gir-Somnath

Killing of 5 civilians in Gumudumaha: Statement by GASS and HRF

July 27, 2016

Statement issued by Ganatantrik Adhikar Surakhya Sangathan (GASS, Odisha) and the Human Rights Forum (HRF, AP and Telangana).

We demand that personnel of the Special Operations Group (SOG) who participated in the firing that resulted in the death of five civilians of Gumudumaha village in Paranpanga panchayat of Tumdibandha block in Kandhamal district of Odisha on July 8, 2016 be duly charged under relevant provisions of the IPC as well as those of the SC, ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and criminally prosecuted.

A four-member team of the Ganatantrik Adhikar Surakhya Sangathan (GASS, Odisha) and the Human Rights Forum (HRF, AP and Telangana) visited Gumudumaha village on July 17 and spoke with local residents including eyewitnesses to the killings. Over 15 residents of the village had hired an auto-rickshaw at Balliguda on the evening of July 8 to take them to their village. Most of them were returning home after having collected their MGNREGS wages at the sub-divisional headquarters (Balliguda). At about 8.20 pm the auto was close to the village but had to get over a steep incline. The passengers got down and while the women, two of them carrying infant sons, walked ahead, the men pushed the auto up the kutcha road.

Upon reaching the top, the women first began to get into the auto when SOG personnel lying in wait amidst bushes not more than 10 to 15 metres away to the left of the road opened fire with no warning whatsoever. Five people, including three women, and a two-year old boy were killed instantly while seven others were wounded, five of them seriously. The dead and wounded belong to the adivasi Kondh and the Scheduled Caste Pano communities. Read more…

Kashmir, Summer 2016: Angana Chatterji

July 26, 2016

Guest Post by Angana Chatterji 

In 2011, I had written an essay on Kashmir entitled: “The Militarized Zone,”which was published in an anthology on Kashmir (Verso Books).

What was apparent then is all too real now. I reproduce an edited fragment here today, in solidarity with Kashmiris who are being asphyxiated in their land and subjected to life under conditions akin to collective internment, and their allies across India who are being intimidated to conserve the silence. Speaking up on Kashmir is inevitably accompanied by fear for many even as silence is a betrayal of humanity. Read more…

Statement Against State Violence in Kashmir: Ashoka University Students and Alumni

July 25, 2016

Guest Post by Ashoka University Students and Alumni

Letter condemning the State Violence in Kashmir


The Govt of India. and the Govt. of Jammu and Kashmir.

We, the undersigned—current students, alumni of the Young India Fellowship, and faculty of Ashoka University—write to voice our deepest anguish and grave concern at the violent turn of events in Kashmir in the past few days. The violence perpetrated by the Indian State after the extra-judicial execution(1) of 22-year old Hizbul Mujahideen Commander Burhan Wani (2) is highly condemnable. The Indian Army, Kashmir Police and other task forces have reacted violently with bullets, pellets and lathis in the clashes that erupted after Burhan’s funeral. This was immediately followed by many more protests and demonstrations as part of Kashmiri resistance to the military occupation of Kashmir by the Indian State. In the violent repression of the protests which had a huge ground support (evident from the large attendance to Burhan’s funeral) , 55 civilians (3) have been killed and around 3100 people (4) were severely injured by the pellets(5), lathis and bullets, some of whom have lost their eyesight. We, unequivocally, condemn this brutal use of force by the Indian State in dealing with the protests after the killing of Burhan Wani. Read more…

Cow Vigilantism as Terror : New Socialist Initiative

July 25, 2016

Guest Post by  New Socialist Initiative

Can the Saffron Establishment ever wash its hands of the growing menace?

(For Hindi version, click the link

( Courtesy : Cartoonist Satish Acharya,

Cow vigilantism which has received tremendous boost since the ascendance of BJP at the centre got its first fitting reply in Gujarat recently. The way in which a self-proclaimed Gau Rakshak Dal – owing allegiance to Shiv Sena – attacked a group of Dalits in Una (11 th July 2016) who were skinning a dead cow, publicly flogged them, led them to the police station charging them with cow slaughter and even circulated a video of the whole incident on social media to spread further terror, has caused tremendous uproar. Read more…

बरवक्त यहां ‘गाय’ कानून तोड़ने का सुरक्षित तरीका

July 24, 2016

cow politics

..उना, गुजरात की इस घटना ने पूरे देश को स्तब्ध कर दिया है. पिछले दिनों इस मसले पर बात करते हुए गुजरात सरकार के चीफ सेक्रेटरी जीआर ग्लोरिया ने गोरक्षा के नाम पर चल रही गुंडागर्दी को रेखांकित किया. उन्होंने बताया कि समूचे गुजरात में दो सौ से ज्यादा ऐसे गोरक्षा समूह उभरे हैं जो ‘अपने हिंसक व्यवहार के चलते और जिस तरह वो कानून को अपने हाथ में लेते हैं, उसके चलते कानून और व्यवस्था का मसला बन गए हैं.’

ग्लोरिया ने अपने बयान में यह भी जोड़ा कि ऐसे समूहों के खिलाफ हम सख्त कार्रवाई करनेवाले हैं क्योंकि भले ही यह ‘स्वयंभू गोभक्त हों मगर वास्तव में गुंडे हैं.’ शहर से गांव तक फैले उनके नेटवर्क तथा स्थानीय पुलिस के साथ उनकी संलिप्तता आदि बातों को भी उन्होंने रेखांकित किया.

ध्यान रहे कि यह पहली दफा नहीं है जब गोरक्षा के नाम पर बढ़ रही असामाजिक गतिविधियों की तरफ संवैधानिक संस्थाओं या उनके प्रतिनिधियों की तरफ से ध्यान खींचा गया हो. अभी ज्यादा दिन नहीं हुआ जब पंजाब-हरियाणा हाईकोर्ट ने भी इसी बात को रेखांकित किया था.

अदालत का कहना था कि ‘‘गोरक्षा की दुहाई देकर बने कथित प्रहरी समूह जिनका गठन राजनीतिक आंकाओं एवं राज्य के वरिष्ठ प्रतिनिधियों की शह पर हो रहा है, जिनमें पुलिस भी शामिल है, वह कानून को अपने हाथ में लेते दिख रहे हैं.’..

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