Rajvir Diler belong to Valmiki community and fighting on BJP ticket from one of the constituency in Hatharas, Uttar Pradesh. A report in several newspapers including Times of India suggest that he has been campaigning in such a way to get the big Jat votes which are decisive in his constituency so he does not enter the houses of the Jats and keep a glass with him to drink tea. He even touches the feet of much younger people of his age. This man is BJP candidate to represent people in Uttar Pradesh assembly. Isn’t is shocking that a person is justifying untouchability and caste discrimination as ‘parampara’ just to get elected. Should we go down begging in such a way that humiliate not only to the individuals but also to community itself ? How is that BJP kind of party which talk of Samarasta never noticed this. Will the election Commission or Supreme court of India take notice of it that a candidate face untouchability during his campaign. Are not these shameful incidents ? But the question who is to be blamed ? Rajvir Diler who is not really a Diler but is begging for the Jat votes who will humiliate him. Is this the politics that empowers ? It reflect that Manuwadi varna system is still prevalent and whereever power communities are dominant they will only want submissive humiliated leadership of Dalits. That is the reason why they hate Mayawati who stand taller and has the capacity to tame a Raja Bhaiya or a Mahendra Singh Tikait.
This question is serious. We condemn this untouchability but we also have to introspect as why do politicians do this. They make their communities ashamed of it. A man contesting assembly is begging and going with his separate glass so that he could drink tea in a separate class is a perfect example of Manuwadi India and that political power has not brought much change but I am sure such persons can only be in Gandhi’s Harijan club and not in Ambedkar’s highly self respecting movement. It is time we stand up and just reject such ‘reserve’ leaders who do not have the capacity to stand up. Get defeated but fight with dignity and self respect. The caste forces will do everything to humiliate but it is our duty to give them a good reply and that is not possible through succumbing to their pressures and humiliations.
The Bharatiya Janata Party is the party of the Manuwadi minds who would never like to offend Jats and we saw Amit Shah telling them that they have a six hundred years old partnership. Amit Shah is right but the partnership of the upper caste gangs against Dalits is more than two thousand years and it continues. Mujaffarnagar’s violence against Muslims too has a caste bias. There was a time when the Western Uttar Pradesh’s Dalits would not dare to go to booths and Chaudhury Saheb would become the most powerful leaders but after the powerful mobilisation by late Kanshiram the Dalits started voting with dignity and self respect but it is shameful that these people are now betraying that strength of the Dalits with total surrender.
In the golden land of Western Uttar Pradesh caste prevails in all forms though it has more violent forms if you violate it. Honored killing, khap Panchayats, Jat Panchayats and so many things but then the Bhim Sena too is growing, the Bhim Shakti too is growing in this region. Perhaps Rajvir Diler should join the Bhim Sena or Bhim Shakti and rather than contesting elections should focus on building a powerful movement to get people justice. Even if he becomes an MLA, he would only serve as a stooge of these caste Hindus and will only be detrimental.
Political parties must get out of this kind of politics. This shows how the BJP and its Hindutva mind select Dalit leaders. They want tame leaders who cant speak, who just stand on their orders. It is time for people to reject it. The Dalit Bahujan polity in Uttar Pradesh has changed and thank to late Kanshiram ji that they are rising and challenging the status quo. Even if they have to join hands with upper castes, it will be on equal term and not being a subservient partner. Western Uttar Pradesh must change. Manuwadi village system is determined to foil the political democracy as enshrined in our constitution. Hope all the political leaders who talk of social justice must respond to it. Report if any candidate behave in such a way or forced to behave in such a way that violate the dignity of the candidate is violative of our constitution and all norms of humanity. It is condemnable. Parties must take note of it.
My appeal to the candidates is please do not humiliate your communities just to win a few votes from the caste Hindus. It also mean that all the Dalits who are contesting on BJP ticket are just for the name and will not be able to work with their head high. Will the BJP leadership condemn such blatant violation of human dignity?
The Jatland need to understand that the world is watching them and they wont gain anything out of such humiliating practices. It is time they reject them and change a bit. Traditions are not always great. It hurt, it ruins a generation. Peace cant be built on such pathetic ideas. It is time to grow up.
Baba Saheb Ambedkar knew about it and that is why he talked of representation and participation. He talked about separate electorate system as those who get elected will have to follow the diktats of the caste Hindus. But despite that warning of Baba Saheb, the rise of BSP with great work done by late Kanshiram ji, things changed especially in Uttar Pradesh where Dalits allied with other like minded groups like Muslims and even OBCs to come to power. There was a great social churning even if it was short lived when BSP-SP joined hand and defeated the Sangh Parivar in Uttar Pradesh. It is clear that the brahmanical upper caste parties only want those Dalits to be in the party who can only serve as their puppet and humiliate the community. This must stop. This is highly denigrating and we hope leadership of different parties will speak on this issue.
One thing is clear that the oppressor never change, they only change their tactics. They only change when the oppressed revolt and react. That is the only way. The Dalits in Uttar Pradesh are rising but BJP and Hindutva want to ensure that they be presented in a humiliating way. We hope when the final result come, the people will elect a leader with power and strength. Even if Diler wins, we don’t think, he will be able to do justice to his community.
Vidya Bhushan Rawat is a social and human rights activist. He blogs at www.manukhsi.blogspot.com twitter @freetohumanity Email: firstname.lastname@example.org