Dalit forum seeks ban on ‘made snana’ in all forms


pci courtesy – express

SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT, The Hindu Managalore, Dec 16.,2012

‘Ede snana’ is also a symbol of slavery of the downtrodden: Shivaramu

Karnataka Rajya Hindulida Vargagala Jagrutha Vedike president K.S. Shivaramu has sought an end to made snana (rolling on the plantain leaves on which Brahmins have partaken meal) or its modified form of ede snana (rolling on plantain leaves on which food offered to deity is kept) at Kukke Subramanya Temple.

The ritual, termed “castiest” and scheduled to be held for three days from Sunday on the premises of the famous temple in Subramanya, symbolised the exploitation of Dalits by upper castes, said Mr. Shivaramu at a press conference here.

Mr. Shivaramu, who was assaulted during the last year’s ritual when a group led by him staged a protest against it, said merely because the Supreme Court had stayed any modified ritual, it did not mean that the authorities of the temple, which is in the control of the Muzrai Department of the government, could resort to continue the “ugly and inhuman” practice. He said all facts had not been placed before the Supreme Court. He expressed the confidence that the Supreme Court would ultimately rule in favour of a ban on it once all details were submitted to it.

He said a committee of the State government’s Social Welfare Department had concluded that thepankti bhedha (serving food separately on the basis of caste) and untouchability were being practised in the temple. This had not been brought to the notice of the Supreme Court, he said.

His forum would do the needful.

He said the modification of the ‘made snana’ into ‘ede snana’ was done at the behest of Vishwesha Tirtha Swamiji of the Pejawar Math and a government under the control of proponents of Brahminism had accepted this.

He said because of the efforts made by his group and other supporters similar practices in Tumkur and Ankola had come to an end.

HC order stayed

The Supreme Court has stayed the Karnataka High Court order allowing modification of the ritual ‘made snana, practised on the premises of the Subramanya temple in Kukke in Dakshina Kannada district.

Following a petition filed before the High Court by Channamalla Deskindra Mahaswami and others, the State government had proposed to allow devotees to roll over plantain leaves on which the food offered to the deity is placed.

The High Court had permitted this in its order on November 9. Passing an order on Friday on an appeal filed by Adivasi Budakattu Hitarakshana Vedike Karnataka, the bench of justices D.K. Jain and Madan B. Lokur said “the operation of the impugned order shall remain stayed”.

 

CEC reiterates stand against illegal mining in State


New Delhi, March 29 2012, DHNS:

The Supreme Court-appointed Central Empowered Committee (CEC) on Thursday reiterated its stand that no new mining leases should be granted in Bellary, Tumkur and Chitradurga districts unless rehabilitation plans for the existing leases were executed. 

The committee also maintained that the combined iron ore production from the mines should not exceed 30 million metric tonnes. It is imperative that any new mining lease should be considered only after the reclamation and rehabilitation plans (R&R) of the existing mining leases are successfully implemented and based on the existing infrastructure facilities and carrying capacity of the area, grant/operation of new mining lessee in an environmentally sustainable basis is found to be feasible and in public interest.

The Special Bench is likely to take up the CEC’s report on April 13. The matter has been adjourned to enable the parties to respond to the report.

The committee, in its report, noted the representation by Samaj Parivartana Samudaya, a non-governmental organisation, challenging ‘A’ category classification awarded to lease holder, R Praveen Chandra, who also held another lease, alleging that the directors of these two companies were close relatives of former chief minister B S Yeddyurappa.

“Praveen Chandra, the lessee, has made two payments, one of Rs 2.5 crore to M/s Bhagat  Homes Pvt Ltd and the other of Rs 3.5 crore to M/s Davalagiri Property Developers Private Ltd and which are shown in the balance sheets of these two companies. The directors of these two companies are close family members/relatives of the then chief minister of Karnataka. The matter needs to be investigated in public interest. The petitioner has requested the CEC to take up this matter suo motu based on this Court’s order dated 23.9.2011,” the committee report said.

Raising uneasy questions subtly


Published: Sunday, Mar 11, 2012, By DNA Correspondent | Place: Bangalore |

In a rather unusual ceremony, SK Biswas, former director of Indian Institute of Science, released four books by social activists MC Raj and Jyothi Raj in the city on Saturday.

Unlike run-of-the-mill book launching events, the discussion that followed the release was not confined to these four books alone. Larger issues that concern the society like identity politics, development, moral policing and sexuality were interestingly dealt with.

The authors are well-known for having led one of the most powerful Dalit movements in Karnataka. They are the founders of Rural Education for Development Society (REDS), a people’s movement that was started in Tumkur district, and, by now, has spread across almost 2,000 villages of Karnataka.

Shouldn’t it reflect on basic aspects of life like health and sanitation? Saying that these questions are something that he often grapples with, Raj said his novels touch upon them subtly.

Of the four books, three are novels—Blissed Out, Raachi and Yoikana. The fourth book, World Parliament of Indigenous People, is a testament co-authored by Raj and his wife Jyothi. It is based on a first-of-its-kind conference of indigenous people organised at Booshakthi Kendra in Tumkur last year.

“The big question that Raj poses in all his books is that can human beings free themselves from the multi-dimensional hierarchy of caste, class, and gender posed on individual identity by the society,” Biswas said.

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