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International Human Rights Law and the Menace of Atrocities on Dalit Communities in India


Contemporary Voice of Dalit, Volume 8, Issue 2, November 2016

Caste discrimination and atrocities on Dalit communities is a stigma on Indian society. By virtue of Article 17 of the Constitution of India, the evil practice of untouchability is abolished. However, menace of caste still exists largely in rural areas as well as in cities in various forms. The Supreme Court of India in Arumugam Sarvai vs State of Tamilnadu, (2011) 6 SCC 405 stated that, ‘A large section of Indian society still regards a section of their own countrymen as inferior.’ It is pertinent to note that as per the statistics published by the National Crime Record Bureau around 27,000 crimes against former untouchables are recorded yearly. The atrocities committed against Dalit communities are result of structural failure of government machinery. In addition to domestic protection available to Dalits, there are provisions in the International Human Rights Law too that address their issues.

In this article an attempt is made to analyze the elements of International Human Rights Law and Municipal Laws of India that concerns with the welfare and legal protection of Dalit communities. The purpose of this research is to show how India failed to meet her obligations under various international human rights conventions to secure Dalit rights.

This research work will debunk the state’s claims of compliance with international standards while protecting social–legal interest of Dalits. There are reports of atrocities and violence against Dalits that indicate that they are still society’s most vulnerable people in a ‘fragile’ state. This article will systematically reveal how international human rights norms were violated and how the situation of Dalits could be improved by improving the standards of the implementation of protective measures in conformity with international human rights law.

URL: http://journals.sagepub.com/toc/VOD/current

Courtesy: Sage

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