In a letter, the Ministry of I and B has guided media houses to discontinue the utilizing “Dalit” word hereafter.
Rather, the ministry has coordinated that the Constitutionally-perceived term, “Schedule Castes” be utilized instead of “Dalit”.
Naturally, the group has restricted the service’s request, saying that the term holds colossal political centrality and is a marker of character.
In March, the Union Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment had issued a warning to all state governments, coordinating that lone the expression “Scheduled Castes” could be utilized in all official correspondence.
Along these lines, in June, the Bombay High Court had guided the Central government to “consider” issuing such an order to media houses within weeks.
The I&B ministry’s warning referred to the HC order.
Remarking on the warning, Union Minister of State for Social Justice Ramdas Athawale, who was related with Dalit Panthers, said that there’s “no reason” regarding why media can’t utilize the term.
“Most groups don’t have a problem. It is, in fact, a word that instilled a sense of militancy in Ambedkarites – the need to be krantikaris when faced with injustice,” he clarified.
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The historical and political importance of “Dalit”
The Sanskrit word Dalit, signifying “oppressed” or “broken”, was promoted by Dr. BR Ambedkar, himself’s identity an SC.
Afterward, in the 1970s, the term increased considerably more footing after it was embraced by a group known as Dalit Panthers.
The word has turned into a solid political personality for individuals who have been subjected to untouchability, and view themselves as outside the four-varna Hindu overlay.