Humanity, which aspires to move to the moon to expand its empire by virtue of its so-called scientific advancement is forced to learn an indelible lesson taught by the virus Covid-19.

The invisible tiny virus has completely overturned our perspectives of high and low; haves and have nots; rich and poor; black and white; male and female; educated and uneducated; owner and labour; urban and rural and so many such discriminations and differences. Indeed, this dreadful virus has no bar!

While the rest of the world has realised this, it is pathetic that caste discriminations in our society is still haunting and the Dalits and untouchables are subject to indiscriminate violence and inhuman atrocities are perpetrated against them day in and day out, despite the spread of the pandemic and the call for the so called social distancing.

The below is a report compiled by Mr.I Aseervatham of People’s Watch, a Human Rights forum based at Madurai, Tamil Nadu. The report was published in Keetru.com, a leading Tamil web portal in tamil on 5th June 2020. The report is rendered in English by Pon.chandran, PUCL, Coimbatore.

IncidenceNo.01:

On 25.03.2020, a sanitary woman worker, was engaged in scavenging near Chozhinganallur at Chennai was forced to work beyond the normal working hours by Caste Hindus. When she refused to oblige, she was abused by the Caste Hindus, referring to her caste origin and humiliated her in public. Police did not take cognisance of the offence, although the said incident was aired in various visual media channels.

Incidentce .02:

On the very same day (i.e., 25.03.2020) in a village named Suryathangal at Thiruvannamalai district ten houses which belonged to the Dalits were razed to the ground using JCB by the Caste Hindus in the village, without any provocation. The Caste Hindus also took away the two wheelers parked outside and bashed those who resisted. Caste Hindus also hurled abusing remarks against all those who resisted and humiliated all of them calling caste names.

A case has been registered at Keezh Vettavalam Police station.

Incidence .03:

On 26.03.2020 at Vizhupuram district at Thiruvennai Nellur as the Dalits in the village were engaged in fishing from a public tank they were forcibly driven away and were subjected to caste humiliation and abuse.

Incidence No.04:

On 28.03.2020 at Thiruchendur taluk of Thoothukudi district in an area named Thopputhurai a Dalit by name Rajadurai was murdered in a broad daylight by some unknown Caste Hindu hooligans.

Incidence No.05:

On 29.03.2020, Thiruvannamaly district, Aarani taluk, at Morappathaangal village a Dalit youth by name Sudhakar was brutally murdered by the Caste Hindus as Sudhakar was in love with Parimala, a non-Dalit.

When this came to the knowledge of Parimala’s father Moorthy, he and Jayakumar, his relative became furious and wanted to put an end to this love and conspired to kill Sudhakar. The two accused for the murder were arrested and remanded for judicial custody at Vellore central jail.

Incidence No.06:

On 30.03.2020 at Adhipakkam village of Ulundhurpettai taluk, Kallakurichi District, a Dalit youth Pandian was electrocuted to death by Venkatachalapathy, a Caste Hindu. Later on it was compromised in the village panchayat meeting and it was concluded that Pandian died when he went for a rabbit hunt and the body was cremated immediately.

IncidenceNo.07:

On 31.03.2020 at Thiruvannamaly District, within the jurisdiction of Chengam Police station, Gauthama Piriyan, a Dalit youth of Thakkavadi village was in conversation with a non-Dalit girl, a friend of his sister, in a Kuppanatham bus stand.

While both were in conversation, Eshwaran, a Caste Hindu police official who passed by, ( without his uniform) spotted Gauthama Piriyan, who was sporting with Ambedkar’s T-shirt was abused in public using caste names.

Further, Piriyan was beaten up and kicked black and blue by Eshwaran the Police in public.

Later, in response to the public outcry and protests by various social organisations, Eshwaran was placed under suspension after a case was filed against him under Prevention of Atrocities Against SC/ST Act.

IncidenceNo.08:

On 05.04.2020

Cuddalore District

Natarajan, the President of Korakkavadi Panchayat Union and his brother Sakthivel, indulged in spreading false messages in social media denigrating the Dalit community in the village.

In response to the complaint filed by Mr.Prakash against the two for perpetrating caste atrocities through social media, a case was registered against the two under Prevention of Atrocities Against SC/ST Act, 2015.

Incidence No.09:

On 06.04.2020

Pudukottai District

Veppanpatti village

Bharathiraja a Dalit youth was in love with Veeralakshmi a non-Dalit girl and got married eventually.

Infuriated parents of Veeralakshmi threatened Bharathiraja and Veeralakshmi that they would be killed.

A complaint has been lodged in the police station concerned in this regard.

Incidence No.10:

On 11.04.2020 at 11pm

Tiruppur District

Vellakovil municipality

Municipal Commissioner Sasikala trespassed into a Dalit colony at Soriyanginathupalayam and without any notice and bargedinto the kitchen and questioned whether they have cooked beef and abused them by pouring phenol into their cooking vessels.

No action has been taken against the municipal commissioner, invoking the Prevention of SC/ST Atrocities Act.

Incidence No.11:

14.04.2020

Namakkal District

Pilippakuttai

Samathuvapuram housing colony

Anita, a Dalit D/O of Muthusamy went to collect portwater from a public tap.

Noticing this Sarasa, a Caste Hindu lady and her husband staying opposite to Anita yelled at her and abusedher calling caste names and thrashed her questioning her ‘audacity’ to collect the water from the commonpublic tap.

They aggrievedAnita lodged a complaint with Ayilpatti police station.

The police officials registered the complaint belatedly. None has been arrested so far.

Incidence No.12

14.04.2020

Tiruppur District

Tiruppur Corporation carried food packages for the conservancyworkers deliberately in the corporation garbage van.

No action has been taken against the corporation officials despite complaints against them for indulging in distribution of food packets, in the wake of Covid-19 pandemic to the conservancyworkers in the most unhygienic manner with obvious intention to distribute the polluted food and cause health hazards to theDalits.

Incidence No.13:

20.04.2020

Chengalpet District

Cheyyur taluk

Vadapattinam village

Manikandan, a Dalit youth, 20, went to fetch medicines to  his sick mother.

When he was on his way to the medical shop, police personnel who was in duty to ensure the curfew, stopped Manikandan on the way and was beaten with PVC pipe assuming that he must be a Dalit. Hearing this a sub-inspector who was on duty joined the other cop and kicked Manikandan indiscriminately and Manikandan fell unconscious.

Later, Manikandan was carried in a Police van and was dumped on the roadside near Vadapattinam village.

When the villagers came to know of the incidencethey took Manikandan for treatment to Chengalpet Government Hospital.

Subsequently, Manikandan’s mother lodged a complaint with the District Superintendent of Police but of no avail.

Incidence No.14:

20.04.2020

Thiruvannamalai District

Keezhpachar dhanda village

Several Dalit families were violently attacked by Caste Hindu goons

Seven Dalits sustained grievous injuries in the above attack and were hospitalised and are undergoing treatment.

Twelve Caste Hindus have been remanded to judicial custody.

The Caste Hindus demanded that the Dalits should eschew their lands to the Caste Hindus and leave the village. The Dalits from the village agreed for this for fear of their lives and accepted to leave the village after the Corona Lockdown is lifted.

Incidence No.15

21.04.2020

Pudukottai District

Karambakudi village

Muruganandham, a Dalit youth was in love with Bhanu Priya of the otherCaste for the last four year and got married.

Hearing this, Bhanu Priya’s relatives ( the Caste Hindus) gathered 15 of them and gheraod Muruganandham and attacked him violently and kidnapped Bhanu Priya.

With the intervention of the police, Bhanu Priya was later freed from the kidnappers.

IncidenceNo.16:

22.04.2020

Dindigul District

Kottaipatti village, near Nilakottai

Tamilselvan, a Dalit youth returned to his village one year after entering into an inter caste marriage.

Having come to know of Tamilselvan’s return to the village the Caste Hindus gathered a mob and attacked violently the Dalit colony ransacking their housing and causing grievous injuries to the Dalits in the colony.

Incidence No.17:

22.04.2020

Salem District

Konagapadi Panchayat Union

The Panchayat Union Amsavalli is a Dalit. Therefore, Mohan a Caste Hindu did not allow her to discharge her duties and prevented her from attending the office. Further abused her calling caste names.

A complaint in this regard is been filed with Tharamangalam police station and the case has been registered.

Incidence 18:

23.04.2020

Virudhunagar District

kannisseri Municipality

R.C.Street Area

The Fake news that 28 Dalits who are residing in the area were affected by Covid19 had deliberately spread by the Municipal Chairperson Jayanthi ( a non-Dalit). Therefore, it was declared by the Municipality that the Dalits shall not draw water from the Public taps.

Despite lodging a complaint against Jayanthi for her discriminatory attitude towards the Dalits, no action has been taken against her so far.

Incidence 19:

On 23.04.2020

Virudhunagar District

Kallakurichi Taluk

ulundhoor Pettai Village.

Reporter Aadhi Suresh working for Velicham TV Channel was brutally attacked as ainst SC/videotaped the vandalisation of Caste Hindus desecration of the portrait of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar.

The Caste Hindus who vandalised the portrait of Ambedkar and for assaulting Suresh have been booked under Prevention of Atrocities Against SC/ST Act.

Incidence 20:

On 24.04.2020

Dindigul District

Village Ayyampatti, near Natham

Devaraj (20) and Hariharan (21), the Dalit youths from the above village went near Srirangampatti.

Rajeshwaran(20) and seven other Caste Hindus mobbed the two Dalit youths and abused them calling Caste names and humiliated them.

A case has been registered at Natham Police Station Against the three accused.

Incidence 21:

On 25.04.2020

Cuddalore District

Chidambaram Taluk

Vadavacheri Village

Natarajan (55, a Dalit from the above Village was brutally murdered and was found on the wayside of Khan Sahib Canal near Ammapettai.

Incidence 22:

27.04.2020

Tirunelveli District

Near Valliyoor,

Vepankad Village

Two Dalit youths from the above Village had come out for work.

Owing to certain prior enmity , Caste Hindus led by Subhash tied the Dalit youths to the road side Electric poles and abused them , physically and mentally.

A case has been registered against them at Koodamkulam Police Station.

Incidence 23:

28.04.2020

Dindigul District

Lingavaadi Village, near Natham.

Balakrishnan, a Dalit from above Village owns a small mango groove.

Subbaiah and fourother Caste Hindus trespassed into the mango groove and started looting the mangoes.

When Balakrishnan resisted their actions he was assaulted and abused.

Natham Police Station has registered a complaint against the accused and arrested them.

Incidence 26:

06.05.2020

District: Erode

Taluk: Andhiyoor

Neruchipatti Panchayat Union

Balan@ Balakrishnan, a Dalit Conservency worker died following chest pain.

The body of the Dalit worker was carried in a Garbage Lorry for burial.

Incidence 27:

Coimbatore District

Advocate Eswaran, a Dalit was staying at his residence near Bharatiyar University.

Manivannan, Inspector of Police, attached to Vadavalli Police Station came to Eswaran’s residence and shouted at him called him to come out of the house.

The moment Eswaran came out of the house Manivannan wielded his Lathi, without any provocation and started charging Eswaran, left and right.and broke Eswaran’s Left hand.

Incidence 28:

07.05.2020

Dust: Madurai

VikravandiTaluk

Aadhanur Area

The Tamil Nadu Government announced the opening of Government Liquor Shops, relaxing the Corona Lockdown.

Consuming liquor from the shop and inebriated condition a few Caste Hindu  youth drove into the Dalit area in their two- wheelers threatening the local people. When they were advised to drive slowly as children were playing in the areaAngered by this intervention, the Caste Hindus attacked the Dalits violently causing grievous injuries for four and hurled abuses.

Incidence 29:

07.05.2020

District: Krishnagiri

Hosur Taluk

Village: Thyagaraja Rasanapalli

A Dalit girl Rajeshwari went to a nearby field around 7pm to answer the Nature’s call.

At that time Caste Hindu youths Madhu, Raja and Ramesh spotted Rajeshwariand harassed her sexually and all the three finally raped her together.

Incidence 30:

Dist: Pudukottai

Village: Kadambathur Viduthi

Three Dalit boys, including Manoharan were attacked by a mob of ten Caste Hindus led by Balraj.

A case has been registered at Karambakudi Police Station.

Incidence 31:

07.05.2020

Dist: Madurai

Village: Keelhaulers Marudharai

A group of eight Caste Hindusled by Nalla Maayanattacked Vinod Kumar and three other Dalits and hurled caste abuses against them.

A case has been registered at Usilampatti Nagar Police Station and five of the accused have been arrested.

Incidence 32:

08.05.2020

Dist: Thoothukudi

Village: Udayakulam

Palavesam, a Dalit had Rs.40,000 from Muthuraj, a Caste Hindu five years ago, pledging his house documents.

Thereafter,when Palavesam repaid the loan and asked for the House Documents back.

Infuriated by this Muthuraj murdered Palavesam andPalavesan’sson-in-law Thangaraj, who had gone to meet Muthurajalong with his father-in-law.

A case has been registered at the Police Station concerned.

Incidence :33

08.05.2020

District: Salem

A Dalit. Youth Vishnu Piriyan was at his residence at Omalur Pudhukadai Colony.

As Tamil Nadu Government opened the Liquor shops, relaxing the Corona Lock down, Caste Hindu who got drunk barged into the Dalit Colony with deadly weapons.

Vishnu Piriyan was killed in front of his residence, while several others suffered grievous injuries.

Omalur Police Station has registered referring to the brutal violence and the killing of Vishnu Piriyan.

Incidence 34:

08.05.2020

District: Cuddalore.

Village: Me Mathur.

Panchayat Chair person of N.Pudhur Panchayat Anna Durai led a mob of Caste Hindus and attacked ten Dalits, including a woman Indira and abused without any provocation.

A case has been registered at Vepery Police Station in this regard.

Incidence:36

09.05.2020

District: Vizhuppuram

Village: Thiruvennai Nallur.

A couple of Dalit youths were buying fruits from a fruit shop in the village.

At that time, a few Caste Hindu youths from ThottiKudisaientered into an argument with the Shop Owner and the Dalit Youths demanding that they should be attended by the Shop Owner, in priority.

Incidence: 37

09.05.2020

District: Vizhuppuramacross

Village : Melamangalam

A Coronapreventive fence was constructed by the Caste Hindusacross the Dalit Colony.

Thus the Dalits were prevented from going out of the colony to get their essentials from the market.

When the Dalits questioned this, they were attacked and abused by the Caste Hindus.

Incidence: 38

09.05.2020

District :Namakkal

Village : Vagarampatti

Sasikumar, a Dalit Law Studentwas on morning walk, when some Caste Hindus led by Gopinath camein two-wheelers, stopped Sasikumar andrediculed  him. Following the verbal exchanges Sasikumar was brutally attacked.

Namakkal Nagar Police Station has registered a case in this regard.

Incidence :39

10.05.2020

District : Vizhuppuram

Taluk : Sangarapuram

Village : Kalipatti.

Kannan is the Panchayat Union Secretary of viduthalai Chiruthsigal Katchi(VCK), a Dalit Political Party.

When he was returning from his fields, he was attacked with deadly knife by a group of Caste Hindu thugs.

Incidence :40

12.05.2020

District : Coimbatore

Somanur KCR MILLS.

About 200 Tribal women from Odisha are working in the above Mills.

In spite of Corona pandemic restrictions the tribal women were forced work for extended hours without observing social/ physical distancing or wearing masksManagement

The Mill Management refused to send these Tribal women to their Home State, in spite  of repeated requests by the workers and their

Trade Union (AITUC).

Although the union lodged a Complaint with the District Collector no action has been initiated against the Mill Management.

Incidence : 41

14.05.2020

District : Tirupur

Taluk : Avinashi.

pazhangarai Panchayat Union

devampalayam Area

Loganathan(25) is a Dalit. His goat inadvertently fields of Murthy, a Caste Hindu, while grazing.

When Loganathan went in search of his goat, Murthy’s son attacked and abused Loganathan and refused to hand over the goat.

Further, Loganathan was forced to apologise in the Village Council.

Loganathan lodged a complaint at Avinashi Police Station against the abuse atrocity committed against him.

As there was no action initiated, he appealed to the District Superintendent of Police and the case was registered with the intervention of the SP.

Incidence :42

19.05.2020

District : Karur

Area : Krishnapuram

When Dalit children were drawing water from the common Public tap, Velmurugan, a Caste Hindu and a leader of Mutharayar Sangam ( a dominant Caste forum) bashed the Dalit children and canned themchased them away.

When the Dalit elders questioned Velmurugan’s behaviour, the Dalits were hauled up and beaten by the Caste Hindus.

Furthe, the use of Public taps by the Dalits were prohibited by the dominant Castes.

Incidence :43

25.05.2020

District : Cuddalore

Manjakuppam

The Life size statue of Dr. B.R.Ambedcar, who is revered by the Dalits desecrated by the Caste Hindus.

Incidence :44

24.05.2020

District : Karur

Village : Poolampalayam

Eezhavas Kannimaar Temple Festival ( An upper caste Temple festival

In view of preventing crowding in the Temple festival, during Corona Lockdown, S.Kannan, a reporter from Velicham TV Complained to the District Superintendent of Police Mr. Pandiarajan.

As the State Minister Bhaskaran was scheduled to visit the Temple festival, which did not fructify, he got infuriated and he hired some goondas and ransacked the house of the Reporter Kannan and hurled casteist abuses against the Reporter an his family members.

Despite the complaint lodged no action has been initiated against the accused.

Incidence : 45

27.05.2020

District : Madurai

Taluk : Usilampatti

Village : Vadagampatti

Sivan Raja(35), a Dalit was talking over his Mobile phone, sitting near Vadagampatti Bus Stand.

While the Dalit youth was talking, Kuthupuli @ Vinod Kumar from the Caste Hindu Community and four others questioned the “audacity of Sivan Raja’ stylishly’ talking over phone in front of the Caste Hindus and stoned his head causing bleeding injuries.

From the above report it is evident that the Dalits were attacked, abused, humiliated, and sometimes killed everyday in Tamil Nadu, particularly during the Corona Lockdown.

It is an irony that this is happening in a land which saw a strong anti- caste movement for more than six decades! it only exposes how strongly the caste prejudices have been ingrained in us!


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