The National Tribunal – Violence against Dalit Women in India (on 30th September and 1st October, 2013, at the Constitution Club in New Delhi) was conceived in the hope that it would be 'one small step in the long and arduous journey of Dalit women for reclaiming their rights'.
Asha Kowtal very succinctly expressed the purpose of the Tribunal at the beginning of the first day: 'We are collected here in the hope that the government will listen to our grievances...The rape and atrocity that happened in Haryana with a dalit girl did come to the forefront but states like Gujarat, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh were not lagging behind in violence and sexual violence on Dalit women...the data provided by government statistics is inadequate...In this Tribunal our sisters and brothers will discuss their cases of violence in front of the Jury...the recommendations of the Jury will be then taken back to our states and we will continue our fight and struggle against the caste-based sexual violence.'
One of the young participants also talked of hope before the event: "..it's the hope that is bringing these 45 cases and more than 200 participants together to one place...from far south to the neighboring states of Delhi...I remember Prof. Vimal Thorat saying "if the government fails to provide justice to the victims/survivors of Dalit women...should we demand a new state for Dalits...where we have our own schools and institutes, where we take the responsibility and safety of our people is in our hands"...Here is the beginning friends.."
It was that hope which did seem to bring all the participants to the Tribunal yesterday. That helped the survivors and their families recall the unspeakable violence meted out to them by caste society. The jury comprising of Farah Naqvi, Henri Tiphagne, Vrinda Grover, Gayatri Singh, Prof. Vimal Thorat, Dr. Srivella Prasad, P.Sivakami and Vidyanand Vikal (please read the Jury Profile in the second half of this report) heard patiently, horrifying accounts of atrocities wreaked upon nearly thirty Dalit women and their families.
Round Table India has tried to bring together short notes on some of those testimonies that were heard yesterday, on the first day of the Tribunal. We thank Asha Kowtal, Sanghapali Aruna Kornana, Prachi R Beula, Thenmozhi Soundararajan and many others for these short notes, because it is their words which make these notes. Thanks are also due to Joshua Isaac for compiling them all.
Dalit woman shot, husband murdered, for daring to buy land in upper caste neighbourhood, in Bihar
Dalit Rights Defender from Bihar giving an account of the case
This is a case of land grab, caste atrocity and murder with a firearm. The victim had bought land (2 katha) for Rs. 25,000 from the late Lalita Lal eight years ago. This land is surrounded from all the sides by Rambilas Yadav's land. The land in the centre belongs to the Scheduled Caste community. To forcefully acquire this land, Rambilas fought with BH-04 as well as her husband Bindeshwari Paswan. The victim and her daughter Anju Kumari tried to help and rescue Bindeshwari but Rambilas Yadav and his friends fired on the victim and started beating Anju Kumari. Then, they took Bindeshwari away to Bellai village and shot him dead. The accused argued that people belonging to Scheduled Castes cannot construct their houses adjacent to their land. The police are also in cahoots with the culprits and have not arrested them yet.
After killing her husband they stuffed his mouth and face with stones, so that the body could not be identified. The police have been pressurizing the victim and her daughter to compromise and settle the case. The police are offering a marriage proposal with the culprits for the victim's daughter. The family had bought land for 25,000 from the Lala, for ten years the land was lying fallow, but once the Dalit family started to build a house on the land, the Rajput and Yadav castes started to oppose them as the land is surrounded by Rajput and Yadav houses. The entire problem is that the upper caste people do not want the Dalit family to build their home in an upper caste area. The victim's daughter has completed her 10th grade and has dropped out of school out of fear. The victims had to flee from their village for 2 months out of fear.
Dalit woman sexually abused, cheated and burnt alive, in Bihar
The mother of the Dalit martyr, seated
The victim was sexually abused for a long period of time, then raped and burnt alive. The Indira Awas Yojana funds allotted to a Dalit woman were taken away by a policeman as a loan, and when she demanded it back, what followed was a horrific series of atrocities. The victim was raped in front of her family and then burnt alive.
Dalit woman dies due to gross medical negligence, in Bihar
The family of a Dalit woman who was a victim of medical negligence and caste discrimination
The case of Ms. BH-01 (name changed). BH-01's daughter-in-law was pregnant and she took her daughter-in-law to the hospital but the hospital did not have doctors to conduct delivery. There they met an agent who took them to another private doctor, who operated on the pregnant woman. However, the negligent doctor conducted a wrong surgery due to which the daughter-in-law's health got critical. BH-01 was then asked by the doctor to go to some other district hospital.
From there, she was directed to go to Banaras BHU hospital where she was asked to go back to the first doctor who treated her daughter-in-law. BH-01's daughter-in-law died during this period due to medical negligence. With the help of local a Dalit activist, when BH-01 went to file a complaint, the police made her run from pillar to post. The police have now asked to compromise but BH-01 wants to continue fighting the case as it is a question of larger justice. It is not only about her daughter-in-law but also about other women who have fallen in the trap of the fake private doctor. The accused doctor Arun Verma still continues with his medical practice. It is an RMP clinic.
Dalit woman beaten up by priests for not paying service charges in the temple, in Bihar
The mother and the Dalit woman who was beaten up by priests
Case of Brahminism. The newly wed victim went to the temple with her family, to pray but the pundits demanded 1000 rupees which she did not have. Therefore, they were not allowed to pray inside the temple. The victim then decided to pray from outside the temple. However, a pandit of the temple saw this and started to abuse the victim. He kicked her worship thali, when the victim protested she was beaten and abused, her clothes were torn apart while the Brahmins beat her. She was beaten till she fainted. The priests thrashed her so severely that even now she suffers from back pain and limps while walking. Now the Brahmins have filed a counter case against the victim alleging that she has stolen temple jewelry. The police did not conduct the medical examination; the victim had to go to a PHC for treatment. Irrespective of a strong case, no action has been taken against the perpetrators.
Dalit woman beaten to death for demanding wages, in Bihar
On the left, the husband of the Dalit martyr who was beaten to death for demanding wages
Caste violence by dominant OBC caste. The victim used to work as a labourer in the farms of the dominant caste OBCs; after working for four days she asked for her wages that was 400 rupees! She was then slapped and beaten by the OBC farmer and four of his sons. After two days, the accused caught her again when the victim was going somewhere. He dragged the 50 year old woman to his door and beat her till she was unconscious. When he realized that she would not survive, he and others dragged her back to her home and threw her near the door, where she died after a few hours. The victim's family has not got any compensation, the police are pressurizing for a compromise. The FIR report has been wrongly filed and the post mortem report has been changed.
Dalit girl gang raped and threatened; a couple of days later, her mother gang raped and murdered, in Haryana
The father and the husband
A father and husband speaks: "My daughter did not have shoes to wear in the school, and that's why she was hesitant to go to school. However, a girl in our neighborhood forced her to go to school. On her way to school she was forced into a car by a few men and then raped several times. They threatened to kill her parents if she dared to tell anyone. They ordered her to come every 10 days to them, whenever they demanded her to come. However, after 10-15 days she told her mother about the rape. The same men picked up my wife after 20 days, they raped her and killed her. My daughter is ill since the day of the incident. I have been threatened against filling a case. They are forcing me to accept 70,000 rupees and take back the case". SP claims that he is mentally unstable and wrongly accusing these people.
Dalit girl sexually abused, brutally attacked and left to die, in Odisha
The father of the survivor
The victim, a 22 year old girl belongs to a washerman family and lives at her grandmother's house. She has studied up to 10th class. Pratap Sahoo is a 55 years old married man with four sons. He belongs to the OBC (Sundhi) community, and is a construction contractor. He was doing canal construction under NREGS. He called the victim to work at the worksite but she refused to do it. He requested and called her many times to work by sending people to her house. Finally, the victim agreed to work to support her family financially. She went to work with a group of girls.
One day, Pratap told her to go to his house to collect some cement. When she reached his house, Pratap was already there, and his wife was not around. Pratap attacked the victim and abused her sexually. Pratap threatened to kill her and her parents if she informed anybody. He had also abused her sexually 3/4 times earlier, by threatening her in a similar manner. She was upset and was not able to share the incident with her mother. She tried to face it herself and did not allow Pratap to rape her. Pratap had told her to sleep alone in a separate room instead of sleeping with her parents so that he could come at night. He also told her to use tablets to prevent pregnancy and to run away from the village so that nobody could catch them. However, she did not agree with him and stopped going for work. She has not got her wages for the last 10 days of work.
All this happened during June, 2012. Sometime in July 2012, the victim had gone to the open space behind the village to answer nature's call in the morning. Suddenly she found herself surrounded by four men whose faces were painted black. One of them asked her, do you know Pratap or not? She refused to answer. Then they threatened her by asking many other questions like, have you known Pratap, has he asked you to go with him, has he not promised to give you Rs 45,000/ etc. The victim was scared but still she responded strongly saying that she did not know anything about it and Pratap. Then she found that Pratap was also one among them. They threatened and pressurized her to tell others that she was bitten by a wild pig. The victim was unable to understand what they were talking about and within no time they put something close to her face and she became unconscious. Then they cut her throat and left her there. After some hours she came to know that she was injured and her body was full of blood. She was not able to move. It was also raining. She tried to move a little and tried to shout, whoever is here, tell my parents that I am not able to move and let them come and take me from here. Hearing her cries some people came and informed her family. And then 20-30 people arrived and took her to the hospital, at around 10 O'clock. The girl has since become handicapped.
Dalit Christian girl gang raped and murdered, in Odisha
The father of the Dallit Christian girl who was violated and murdered
The victim aged 13 years, was gang raped and murdered on 26th October, 2012, by Ankur Pradhan (now arrested), a minor from Dadadamaha village, and Udhab Pradhani and Bharata Pradhani of Suluma village. The incident occurred during Durga puja festive week, on the road to Simonbadi, at about 11.00 p.m., when the girl was going for an entertainment programme organized for the Durga puja festival. She was accompanied by her 10 year old cousin. Simonbadi is about one and a half kms from Dadadamaha.
On the following morning, a passerby saw the dead body of the girl lying on the road side between Simonbadi and Dadadamaha. The family members and the villagers rushed to the spot and identified the girl's body. The medical report confirms that she was gang raped and murdered. Her body was lying naked with injuries on her private parts, throat and chest. A case has been registered against the accused at Daringbadi police station. Presently, the family lives under trauma and fear. Supported by NGO workers, the parents of the deceased received Rs.10, 000 towards the funeral from the Red Cross Fund. The family has not received adequate financial assistance and other forms of support from the district and State administration so far. All the six accused are juveniles.
Minor Dalit Christian girl gang raped, in Odisha
The mother of the survivor
Gang rape of minor Dalit Christian girl. The victim is the third child of her parents. She has two elder brothers and a younger sister. Her parents are wage laborers and reside in a rented house. She is doing her schooling and belongs to the minority Dalit Christian category. During the puja holidays she was staying in her grandmother's house. On 24th October, 2012, she went to see a drama organized in a temple along with her aunt. After attending the temple festival celebration, they were both returning to her uncle's house. When she was waiting for her aunt, six boys approached her and took her to a nearby bush and raped her (three of them were adults and the other three were minor boys). Her aunt was not with her when the incident took place.
The family of the girl is fighting for justice. Salute the brave child who continues her schooling in a different school.
Dalit college student kidnapped, raped and murdered in Jind, Haryana
The father of the Dalit martyr, on the left
A rare case where three autopsies were performed and the third report, which was expected to be a real report, has not yet given to the parents of the victim (it has been more than a month now, since the incident).
The father decided to keep the girl's dead body until the police took action...the dead body was kept in the civil hospital for 7 days.
The body was taken for cremation even without the parents being informed...The activists present there, parents and relatives ensured that the body was sent to AIIMS for a third autopsy.
After seven days, around 2000 police personnel came to lathi charge the girl's father and other protesters. The police had asked the upper castes of the village to take the body and cremate it...The father decided to take the body to some other place on the way. The police lathi charged the girl's parents and even kicked the dead body of the girl.
Advocate Rajat Kalsan said that they had filed an RTI to retrieve the post mortem report but the response from the authorities is not encouraging or satisfactory as they said that they would decide after one month whether to give the report or not.
They promised a job to a family member and immediate compensation...the father feels deceived as the promises were never fulfilled.
The father says had the first police station where they had gone to file a missing persons complaint acted immediately they would have found their daughter ALIVE.
A one man SIT (special Investigation) Team has been appointed for investigation. They expect this one man to fight the Haryana govt, which has the highest rate of atrocities on Dalit women. Asha Kowtal demands that the govt. declare these areas in Haryana as atrocity prone zones and Prof. Vimal Thorat expresses her dissatisfaction with the Haryana govt. and demands a separate state for Dalits if they can't provide justice. Manisha Devi, a Dalit woman activist, says that the police was trying to manipulate the case and get different aspects into the case to divert the matter from rape and murder to suicide. The jury members suggest the team should request an immediate CBI investigation at this stage.
Dalit woman gang raped; perpetrators make video and threaten to kill her parents, in Haryana
On the left, the survivor's brother
When her father went to report the case to the police, they said no one can do anything as they are powerful. So they did not file the case, as a result the father committed suicide.
With lots of intervention, the case moved further. There were nine men involved in the gang rape, only four have been sentenced to life imprisonment and the rest are free. The father's case is still under trial.
Dalit woman cheated, confined, harassed and denied wages, in Odisha
Dalit Rights Defender Jyoti presents a case of cheating, confinement, harassment and non-payment of wage labour
Case of cheating, confinement, harassment and non-payment of wages to Dalit woman. The victim, age 23, belongs to a BPL family. She was helping her mother with household work. A married woman named Halima Nayak, age 35 (who is an associate of Mr. Ashok, from Tamil Nadu, who was working as a manpower supplier in Sri Murugan Spinning Mill since last year) met the victim around this time. On 14th January, 2013, Halima encouraged the victim and two other girls of the same village to join the company, after taking them from Odisha. She handed them over to Ashok who is a well-known agent. Mrs. Halima had set a condition to pay Rs. 5,500/-per month as wages for the girls. These girls had worked there for 3 months.
Then, one day they asked for their wages. But the agent Ashok beat them and locked them in a room. In addition, they were not provided food, their belongings, mobile phone, dresses and Rs. 1100/- were also taken away from them. Then these girls compelled Halima to arrange for their departure from the company. In the mean time, she promised to pay Rs. 10,000/- cash they would go back home. One of the victims informed her family privately from another roommate's mobile phone about their condition. Then the victims' parents received this information and immediately filed a case on 11th March, 2013. But the IIC of this police station did not register the case. The victims were brought back without their pay, belongings, mobile phone and dresses, etc. The victims are yet to get their wages for the three months.
Dalit woman activist beaten and humiliated, in Rajasthan
A Dalit woman activist beaten and humiliated, but not defeated
In the village panchayat elections, the Sarpanch seat was for general category. However the victim applied in the general category seat for the post of Sarpanch. She decided to contest as she had been a member in the panchayat. This issue angered the dominant villagers. The victim, a Dalit woman filed her nomination too and fought as candidate for Sarpanch. The dominant castes of the village, belonging to Rajput and other communities, could not tolerate the fact that a Dalit woman was challenging their hierarchy..
On 20th April 2013, around 4 pm in the evening, the victim was filling water from the hand pump near her house. Her Rajput neighbours came to her house and asked about her husband. She replied that he had gone outside. Then they started abusing her husband. She protested their behavior but then they also started abusing her and beating her, shouting caste abuses, insulting her too. She was beaten and her clothes were torn off.
A brief history of our brave lady: She is a well educated woman and was a member of the panchayat. She has been fighting against atrocities done to Dalits and protested against injustices. She has also worked to develop roads in the colony, providing electricity connections, tried to solve the water problem and provide hand pumps. On 26th January 2013, when Republic Day was celebrated in the Government Senior Secondary School, our 'human rights defender' was invited there as the people's representative for the celebration. When she sat on her seat, the Rajputs protested against it saying their women are sitting down and how can a Dalit woman sit on the chair. During that function, the victim also distributed prizes to children. She also gave Rs.101 and a pen to school teacher Harendra Singh Rajput, who out of caste prejudice did not announce this. After repeated attempts by her, he did not declare the prizes just because she had given money for them. This shows the casteist mentality of the teacher. She said if the state fails to protect her, she will become Phoolan Devi and fight for her rights.
Dalit woman sexually assaulted, in Bihar
Husband of a Dalit woman survivor who fought off a rape attempt at her workplace
The victim was employed to get drinking water for the workers under the NREGA at the forest office's work site. On 22nd June, 2013, she came as usual at 7 am and started working. Around 25 workers were employed at that work place. She went to the hand pump at a distance of 1 km from the NREGA office to fetch water around 10.30 am. There are trees and bushes near the hand pump. While she was coming back, Vinod Sharma caught her and forced her down. He attempted to rape her. Her dress was torn by Vinod. She started to shout for help. After hearing her calls some people who were working nearby, came running. Seeing people come there, the accused ran away into the forest. When her husband Motilal Bairwa came to know about the incident, he went to Vinod Sharma and had a heated argument with him. The accused called his friends by Banwari Sharma, Ghanshyam Sharma, Madan etc. and started beating Motilal and abused him.
When the victim and her husband went to the police station to file an FIR, the police did not register the case and asked them to sit from noon 2 pm to night 10 pm. Police officer Punnilal Meena forced them to negotiate the case. When the couple refused to negotiate, the cop registered the FIR. Although the FIR was registered, the police did not invoke appropriate sections of the IPC, nor did the police officer hand over the slip of the report to victim.
Dalit minor girl gang raped, in Haryana
The father of the minor girl
The victim was a minor girl (aged 13 years) who belonged to the Valmiki caste and was studying in class 4th. On 30th October, 2012, the victim went to inquire about the health of her mother who was hospitalized in the nearby civil hospital. Her father was also present in the civil hospital. Around 4 am in the morning, her father went outside to have tea. Meanwhile, two boys came and told the victim that her father is calling her outside. As she went outside, they put a cloth on her face and she fainted.
When she came to her senses, she found herself on the outskirts of the village among trees and shrubs. She shouted for help but all three of them gang raped her. They also assaulted her when she protested. The victim was crying for help and 5-6 people who were passing by helped her (including a lady). They called the police and informed them about the incident. They handed over the girl to the police. Police called the family members of the girl and admitted her in the civil hospital on 1st November, 2012. She was in the hospital from 1st. November, 2012 to 9th November, 2012.
The father says that "both my wife and daughter are sick now ...I have hopes with the people now. The police had termed the girl as mentally challenged.
Dalit minor girl gang raped in Hisar, Haryana
Rajat Kalsan, lawyer activist, talks about another gang rape case from Hisar, Haryana...where the police pressurized the family for negotiations rather than conducting any investigation
On 3rd November, 2012, a Dalit minor girl went to her school and returned back around 11 am. When she returned, nobody was there in the home, everyone had gone to fields. The victim was having her food. Seeing the victim alone at home, Kuldeep & Deepu, Pawan and Vijay entered the house and fell upon her. They tied her eyes and mouth and also started beating and kicking her. Then they all gang raped her and also threatened her not to disclose it else they would kill her family members. After it, the culprits left her wounded and traumatized and ran away. The victim told everything to her uncle and he informed the family about the incident. HR-01's father and uncle informed the police about the rape incident, while police did not investigate anything and pressurized the family for negotiations. After many efforts, FIR was lodged against the culprits.
The girl's brave uncle who decided to fight the case. A counter case has been filed by the culprits against the uncle...The case filed was that the uncle had beaten the boys.
Dalit minor girl raped and tortured, in Rajasthan
Dalit Rights Defender Pooja presenting a case of rape of a Dalit minor girl
On 23rd February, 2010, the victim went to the fields with her mother to bring fodder. In the evening around 5.30 pm, her mother went to a nearby bore well to get water. In the meanwhile, Surendra who was cutting the trees came and tied her mouth and dragged her to the mustard fields and raped her. At the same time, the girl's cousin who was passing by heard somebody crying. He reached the victim and the accused tried to escape. Sundar chased the accused but he got help from Ramniwas who was waiting with a bike and thus the accused managed to run away. The brother of the victim, who had gone for the cutting the harvested crops, was informed about the incident. He then informed his elder brother, who had gone for labour work. The family members went to the police station to register the FIR. The police harassed the girl and tried to change the statement of the victim. They tried to file a case against the girl's brother... The police beat the girl and recorded a statement wherein the girl confessed that the accused did not rape her and she had sexual relations with her cousin.
Farah Naqvi is a writer and activist working on public policy and the rights of the most marginalized - largely on women's rights, minority rights (in particular, on issues related to the Muslim minority), dalit rights issues and on education. The focus of her work is on both - access to justice and equity in development. She is one of the founders of Nirantar (a Delhi-based NGO working on gender & education), and serves on the board of several NGOs and trusts. She has worked, campaigned and written on issues of communalism, and on seeking justice for victims & survivors of communal violence, with special focus on women's rights in the context of violence induced displacement. An enduring interest in alternative media and in promoting voices of women from marginalized and rural communities in the media space, lead to her 2008 book, Waves in the Hinterland; it explores connections between rural women, education, rural media, democracy and citizenship. Since 2010, she has been a member of the National Advisory Council.
Henri Tiphagne - A lawyer, human rights trainer & defender, Honorary ED of People's Watch - India, Chairperson - Forum Asia (Bangkok), Exec Com member of the World Organization Against Torture [OMCT- Geneva] and presently the Convenor of the Working Group on Human Rights in India and the UN [WGHR]. Mr. Henri Tiphagne is the founder and Executive Director of Peoples Watch, India. Peoples Watch is a national human rights organisation working to document and legally pursue human rights abuses. Mr. Tiphagne started as a student leader and went on to become a civil rights lawyer and in recent years also a prominent human rights activist on the international scene. He is particularly known for his fight against torture in his home state, Tamil Nadu, and India as such, and has worked extensively to combat caste discrimination. Mr. Tiphagne also is one of the founders of NCDHR in India – the National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights. He was also a Member of the National Core Group of NGOs of the National Human Rights Commission of India. (2001 – 2012) and the State Representative of the National Commission for the Protection of Child Rights [NCPCR] from 2010 – 2013. He is presently also the Honorary National Working Secretary of the All Indian Network of NGOs and Individuals working with National and State Human Rights Institution (AINNI) and the Human Rights Defenders' Alert- India (HRDA).
Vrinda Grover is a lawyer, researcher and human rights activist. She graduated from St. Stephen's College, obtained her law degree from Delhi University and her Masters in Law from New York University, School of Law. She has been actively engaged with the women's rghts and human rights movements in India. As a lawyer she has appeared in landmark human rights cases and represented women and child survivors of domestic and sexual violence, victims and survivors of communal massacre and custodial killings, sexual minorities, trade unions and political activists. Her work probes impunity of the State for human rights violations. Her research and writing examines the role of law in the subordination of women; the failure of the criminal justice system in situations of targeted crimes; effect of 'security' laws on human rights; rights of undocumented workers; challenges confronting internally displaced persons and issues relating to impunity for human rights violations in conflict situations. She is the National Advocate for the International Commission of Jurists; a member of the UN Women India, Civil Society Advisory Group; Bureau member of South Asians for Human Rights (SAHR); a member of the Working Group on Human Rights in India and the UN (WGHR); and a board member of Greenpeace India.
Gayatri Singh - Co-founder, HRLN Director, Labour Rights Initiative Senior Advocate practices at the Bombay High Court, is one of the leading lawyers on labour laws. Gayatri is practicing as a lawyer since 1984 and have taken up cases pertaining to tribals, dalits atrocities and displacement, implementation of various schemes including food security, education and health, women, children ,labour including migrant and bonded labour environment issues and criminal cases pertaining to illegal detention, release of under trials etc
Prof. Vimal Thorat is the Convenor of the NCDHR - All India Dalit Women's Adhikar Manch (AIDMAM). She also is one of the founders of National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights. On behalf of NCDHR she was one of the recipients of the Rafto Award in 2007 in Norway. As a Dalit Woman, she has worked with the oor & marginalized, especially for the SC/ST. She is actively involved with the Manual Scavenging and working for the strengthening of the Dalit Women. She is writer and has written and edited Dalit Women's poems. She is also a professor in the Indira Gandhi Open University, New Delhi.
Dr. Srivella Prasad is the General Secretary of "NCDHR- National Dalit Movement for Justice (NDMJ)". He has a doctorate in Economics and is pursuing Law from Andhra University. He served as director of SAKSHI- Human Rights Watch AP and was instrumental in strengthening the organization and networks in A.P. He is the Convenor of the Coalition for Strengthening the SC/ST PoA Act and has been on the forefront of agitations and intense lobby for the amendments to the Act
P. Sivakami an I.A.S officer, of 1980 batch from Tamil Nadu, chose a deliberate exit from significant post mainly to fight atrocities towards Dalits and especially Dalit Women. She joined Bahujan Samaj Party, and contested 2009 parliamentary election and unfortunately she was not able to win the race. Later she has founded "Samuga Samatuva Padai Party", and she steers it to a greater success. In literary circles, Sivakami is considered a strong Dalit writer with a feminist penchant. She is also most popularly known in Dalit circles and in general for bringing Dalits cause, Dalit woman's cause and broadly woman's role in politics to the nation's attention. She is well known for most her writings, Dalit artistic abilities and publications about Dalit issues.
Vidyanand Vikal, Chairperson, Bihar State Commission for Scheduled Castes. He has stated " No atrocity against the scheduled castes will be tolerated in the state at any cost". Also he has been instrumental in increasing the conviction rate under SC/ST (POA) Act in the state. He actively worked for Land rights of Dalit and as a chairperson of Bihar State Commission for Scheduled Castes given special focus on education of Dalits.