Dr Kaushal Panwar, who appeared on Satyamev Jayate's July 8 episode on Dalit issues, has praised Aamir Khan for his efforts, however, she feels that the show should have also mentioned the great work done by Dr. Bhim Rao Ambedkar for the Dalit community.
"At places like JNU and DU discrimination does happen against the Dalit students but in a veiled manner nowadays," Dr Kaushal Panwar alleged while praising the actor for his efforts, during an interview with citizen journalist Shiv Prakash.
CJ: How was your experience of participating in Aamir Khan hosted show 'Satyamev Jayate' which focused on Dalit issues like untouchability and manual scavenging?
Dr. Kaushal Panwar: It was a good experience for me. I am getting hundreds of calls everyday from people to appreciate my efforts and fight against the social evils. The episode raised the issue of untouchability that is still in the system. This issue has been overlooked by everyone.
CJ: Do you think the show will be successful in bringing any change in the mentality of the society towards Dalit community?
Dr. Kaushal Panwar: I think the show will sensitise towards the problems of Dalits.
CJ: In the show while telling your own story you mentioned how you faced the discrimination while residing in JNU hostel. However, the professors at JNU have denied this. What you have to say?
Dr. Kaushal Panwar: It is very obvious that JNU administration will deny this. See, at places like JNU discrimination against Dalits happens in an indirect manner because these places are always in limelight. Not only at JNU but at Delhi University also, discrimination happens in different forms. Take the examples of admissions here at DU. The admission procedure is online and very simple for general candidates. However, SC/ST candidates have to run from pillar to post to complete the admission formalities. This is also a form of discrimination.
CJ: The show did not mention the efforts of Dr. Ambedkar who primarily raised the issue of untouchabililty and fought for Dalit rights?
Dr. Kaushal Panwar: I have taken the name of Dr. Ambedkar on the show. But it was not aired. I too feel that the show should have mentioned the various works done by Dr. Ambedkar for Dalit rights. The episode would have become more effective and people, especially the Dalit community would have loved it more. But we should not go in to all these controversies and praise the initiative of Aamir Khan.
CJ: What will you say about Aamir Khan? How effectively he raised the issue?
Dr. Kaushal Panwar: I am very grateful to Mr. Khan that he brought up the issue of untouchability in public. No doubt he and his team has done a great work.
(Dr. Kaushal Panwar is professor of Sanskrit language at Delhi University)
[Courtesy: Meri News, July 13, 2012]