Kathmandu, February 20
Leaders of the civil society have demanded proportional representation of Dalit community in all state organs, saying they were left behind economically, socially and culturally.
Speaking at an interaction programme organised by dalit.online.com on the occasion of International Social Justice Day in the capital today, they argued that Dalits should be provided equal educational and economic opportunities.
Speakers at the programme also underscored the need to increase Dalit people’s access to justice. National Human Rights Commission member Sudeep Pathak commented that the rising cases of discrimination against the Dalits were due to the lack of effective implementation of the Prevention of Caste based Discrimination and Untouchability Act, 2068.
Similarly, Secretary at the Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Tek Prasad Dhungana shared that a law in compliance of the Article 40 of the new constitution was in offing to further secure the rights of Dalits. He said formulation of an act on National Dalit Commission and provisions on Dalit scholarships would be finalised by mid-April. Likewise, National Women Commission member Manu Humagain pointed out the need for a nation-wide awareness campaign and implementation of laws formulated to end caste-based discrimination and untouchability.
Also speaking at the programme, Member Secretary of National Dalit Commission Sitaram Ghale Pariyar argued that the state should implement the acts aimed at eliminating caste-based discrimination. Dr Sundarmani Dixit, leader of civic movement, stated that discriminating people on the basis of their caste was a crime.
A version of this article appears in print on February 21, 2016 of The Himalayan Times.