In the aftermath of brutal rape against a 19-year-old Dalit girl in Hathras district of Uttar Pradesh, various Ambedkarite student associations (ASA) formed a Joint Action Committee (JAC) to condemn the attacks on Dalit community perpetrated by upper-caste Hindus in India. On 10th October, JAC organized peaceful protests by adhering to Covid 19 protocols in India and foreign countries, such as Geneva and Washington DC.
The protesters argued in a press statement that National Crime Records Bureau data say that a total of 45,935 cases were registered under atrocities against Scheduled Castes, amounting to roughly 126 atrocity cases every single day, with Uttar Pradesh recording the highest incidence of crimes against Dalits. The status shows that out of 32,033 reported rape cases in the year 2019, 11 percent i.e., 3524 rapes were that of Dalit women. Every day around 10 Dalit women get raped in India. The data also state that the rape vulnerability of women has increased by 44 per cent, and more so for Dalit women, in the last decade. This is a direct reflection of the Brahmin masculinity project that has been waging furiously in the last few years.
JAC has also questioned the role of mainstream media and said that majority is dominated by the upper caste people who work on Sangh Parivar agenda. There are only a handful of media channels that have covered the crime properly and have tried to ask the right questions to the power. Yet, even among this handful, there are many who refused to acknowledge the 'upper caste violence angle'.
JAC's statement also said that after the crime that was unleashed upon the family, first by the rapist- murderers, and then by the State machinery, the forensic report has now declared that the victim was not raped. This is a deliberate ploy to protect the rapist who belongs to Thakur men by the State led by the CM Ajay Bisht (Yogi Adithyanath), who is also a Thakur himself. Instead of ensuring justice to Manisha and her family, the UP government has put a price on her body and life — 25 lakhs, a house, and a government job; and is systematically putting the family members to humiliation"
The JAC aims to bring together Ambedkarite Student Organizations across the various educational institutions of the country, to organize the struggle against caste violence perpetrated by the savarnas on Dalits. In the present context, it aims to keep the struggle for Justice for Manisha Valmiki alive and co-ordinate our efforts towards this objective. JAC consists of around 33 signatories and endorsements with 10 demands for the authority.
JAC demanded an enquiry which should be free and fair and land to the victim's family, and government jobs for the family members. Complete protection and security for the family by the government. Moreover, Fast-track courts for redressal of SC/ST atrocities must be set up and made functional in all districts of India.