Strategy aims to empower Dalits

Kathmandu, November 21:

With the objective of empowering the Dalits by enlightening them on empowerment, discouraging intra-caste discrimination and addressing the problems dogging them, the Dalit Empowerment and Inclusion Project (DEIP) has prepared a new strategy. “Efforts will be made to forge alliances with janajati and women’s movements at various levels,” the paper on empowerment policy and institutional Change (EPIC) states, adding that rallies and sit-ins will be organised through social mobilisation to build pressure on the government to solve problems dogging Dalits,” states the EPIC strategy paper of Dalit Empowerment and Inclusion Project (DEIP).

Under the leadership of Dalit National Federation, civil society organisations will put pressure on the government to make the National Dalit Commission (NDC) a constitutional and powerful body like the National Human Rights Commission. “The NDC, which is the greatest achievement of the Dalit movement, should no longer be kept under the Ministry of Local Development,” states the paper. “In the absence of a set criteria, parties in power appoint their workers as officials of the commission.” “Marriages between Dalit castes will be promoted to remove intra-caste discrimination,” reads the strategy, adding that efforts will be made to rehabilitate them in the Dalit society.

Joint feasts will be organised to discourage unsociability, the EPIC paper further states. The strategy will call on all Dalit organisations to adopt an inclusive policy while making

appointments. Pointing at the poor implementation of land reform laws, the paper states:

“There will be enough land for the needy if the laws are implemented effectively.” The strategy lays stress on the need to convince the vice-chairperson of the National Planning Commission to formulate policies and programmes in favour of Dalits.