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Gujarat is Hell On Earth For Dalits & Adivasis: Jignesh Mevani On Murder Of 17-year-old Dalit Boy

Mevani cited govt data and pointed out a 32% rise in crimes against SCs and a 55% rise in crimes against STs between 2013 and 2017 in the state.

MLA Jignesh Mevani on May 23, took to Twitter to illustrate the hellish condition of Dalits and tribal folk in Gujarat, “The Land of the Legends”, and the purported ideal model cited by the Modi-led BJP during their 2014 poll campaign.

Mevani, citing government data from 2019, pointed out a 32 per cent rise in crimes against Scheduled Castes and a 55 per cent rise in crimes against Scheduled Tribes between 2013 and 2017 in the state.

Mevani tweeted “The brutal murder of 17-year-old Rajesh Sondarva near Rajkot reinforces what I’ve always been saying: Gujarat is hell on earth for Dalits and Adivasis.”

Mevani hit out at the Gujarat government for not being interested “in taking corrective measures and ensure justice” for the victims and their families.  

He slammed chief minister Vijay Rupani’s administration for being “indifferent and negligent” to the plight of minorities that as per him led to a complicit government paying patronage to criminals and murderers, which in turn bolstered casteist elements.

Also Read: Rajkot: Group Of Darbar Caste Men Beat Dalit Youth To Death

On Tuesday, May 21, in the Rajkot district, eight men from the Darbar caste beat a Dalit youth named Rajesh Sondarva to death. The latest murder is only the most recent horrific incident in a long line of newspaper headlines about regular attacks on Dalits and tribal folks for reasons as trivial as riding horses, leading processions or merely sitting and eating in front of upper caste men.

Mevani has been sitting outside the Rajkot district collector’s office demanding a special investigation probe into Rajesh’s murder. The MLA has also asked for a special rehabilitation package for the victims’ family, police protection for them and action against Shruti Mehta, Deputy Superintendent of Police who was investigating the murder of Rajesh’s father, Nanji Sondarva. The latter also fell victim to caste violence just a year ago, for daring to expose his upper caste murderers in corruption charges. The father and son’s murders are reportedly connected.

Speaking on the eve of the 2019 Lok Sabha election results, Mevani cited BR Ambedkar’s words on how political democracy can’t exist without social democracy. He quoted the social reformer saying that social democracy means “a way of life which recognises liberty, equality and fraternity as the principles of life.”

Also read: Gujarat: Patidar Mob Of More Than 150 Booked For Stopping Dalit Wedding Procession

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