August 11, 2008

Broken People

Caste Violence Against India's "Untouchables"

I. Summary
II. Recommendations
Recommendations to the Government of India
Recommendations to All State Governments
Recommendations Specific to Abuses Documented in this Report
Recommendations to the United Nations
Recommendations to the World Bank and Other International Lending Institutions
Recommendations to India's Donors and Trading Partners
III. The Context of Caste Violence
The Caste System..
"Untouchability" and Segregation
The Relevance of Land
Social Boycotts and Retaliatory Violence
Violence Against Dalit Women
The Role of the Police
Dalit Political Movements
The Rise of the "Backward Castes"
Legal Context
IV.  The Pattern of Abuse: Rural Violence in Bihar and the State's Response
The Context of the Conflict
The "Naxalites"
Caste Militias
Confrontations over Land
Ranvir Sena Massacres and State Complicity
Government Compensation Packages
The State's Targeting of Naxalites
V.  The Pattern of Abuse: Southern District Clashes in Tamil Nadu and the State's Response
Context of Clashes
Melavalavu Murders
Displacement of Dalit Villagers
Police Raids in the Southern Districts
Violence Against Dalit Women During the Southern District Clashes105
Renewed Clashes113
Tamil Nadu Government-Appointed Commissions116
VI.  The Ramabai Killings118
The Killings118
National and International Standards on the Use of Firearms124
VII.  Discrimination and Exploitative Forms of Labor129
Bonded Labor129
Caste and Employment Discrimination130
The Devadasi System: Ritualized Prostitution139
VIII.  The Criminalization of Social Activism.. 142
Rights of the Accused143
False Arrests During the Tamil Nadu Southern District Clashes145
Maharashtra Case Studies149
Other Case Studies152
IX.  Attacks on Dalit Women: A Pattern of Impunity154
Women and the Law.. 155
Failure to Prosecute Rape Cases157
Caste and Gender Bias in the Courts162
X.  Failure to Meet Domestic and International Legal Obligations to Protect Dalits166
India's Obligations under Domestic Law.. 166
Failure to Implement the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989   173
India's Obligations under International Law.. 183
XI.  Conclusion190
Appendix A: Selected Articles of the Indian Constitution193
Appendix B: The Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989   202
Appendix C: The Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Rules, 1995   212
Appendix D: The Employment of Manual Scavengers and Construction of Dry Latrines (Prohibition) Act, 1993   226
Appendix E: Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination Concluding Observations on Caste   237
Appendix F: Human Rights Committee Concluding Observations on Caste243
Appendix G: Relevant United Nations Forms and Addresses251