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Dhaka Tribune

Dalit community wants elimination of discrimination

Members of Dalit community form human chain, call on government to abolish all discriminatory laws

Update : 20 Dec 2022, 11:09 PM

Bangladesh Dalit and Deprived People's Rights Movement (BDERM) and Center for Social Development (CFSD) on Tuesday formed a human chain before Barisal Ashwini Kumar Hall, making eight demands, including the enactment of the Elimination of Discrimination Act to protect the rights of the Dalit community.

Members of the Dalit community called on the government to abolish all discriminatory acts and highlighted various problems.

The program was presided over by freedom fighter Lalit Das, while AK Azad, Sushanta Ghosh, Rafikul Alam, advisors of BDERM, Uttam Kumar Bhakto, executive director of CFSD Supriyo Dutta, area officer of Nagorik Udyog Ranjit Datta, Secretary of Barisal Minority Rights Forum Jayanta Kumar Das, General Secretary of Harijon Oikya Parishad Basanta Robidas and General Secretary of Robidas Samaj Kalayan Sangha were also present.

The speakers said despite the written provisions in the constitution against all forms of discrimination, the Dalits who work at the lowest level of society are still deprived of various opportunities including jobs and education.

As a result, a large number of people in society are left behind, due to which the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) targets are not being met, they added.

They also called for immediate enactment of the draft anti-discrimination law, significant allocations for Dalits in the national budget, introduction of quotas for Dalits in government jobs, general and reserved representation for Dalit seats in parliament, housing for Dalits in all cities and municipalities, introduction of admission quotas for Dalit teachers and students in all institutions of the country, including at universities.

Drawing attention of the participants, the speakers said a bill on elimination of discrimination was tabled in parliament on April 5, and immediate implementation of this law is required. 

Condemning an attack on a minority youth in Shantahar of Bogra, they said multiple families of the Dalit community live in small places. Therefore, accommodation and education facilities as well as employment and quotas for Dalit community members should be preserved through government initiatives.

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