From: Peoples Media Advocacy & Resource Centre-PMARC <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, Jun 21, 2010 at 2:29 PM
Subject: [PMARC] Dalits Media Watch - News Updates 21.06.10
To: Dalits Media Watch <PMARC@dgroups.org>
Dalits Media Watch
News Updates 21.06.10
DVE diverted 'Dalit students' coaching funds - C2C Live
Mayawati expresses unhappiness over encroachment on SC, ST land - The Times Of India
'Most Dalit students lack access to information on education' - Times Of India
Dalit Manch lays siege to DAC, burns effigy - Indian Express
DVE diverted 'Dalit students' coaching funds
Bangalore: The Director of Vocational Education (DVE) has diverted Rs.1.97 crore earmarked for providing extra coaching and to supply study material to students belonging to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes for payment of salary expenditure for regular employees, violating the guidelines of the Planning Commission.
The Comptroller and Auditor General of India (Civil), who disclosed this serious lapse on the part of the DVE, in his annual report ending March 2009, said that the Special Component Plan (SCP) and Tribal Sub Plan (TSP) are designed to channelise the flow of funds from the general sector to schemes for development of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes children.
According to guidelines issued in October 2005 by the Planning Commission, the State Government was to formulate action plans for schemes which would directly benefit individuals or families belonging to SCs and STs.
Funds under the schemes were not to be diverted or allowed to lapse and should be used for this purpose only. Scrutiny of records of the Director of Vocation Education in December 2008 revealed that Rs. 2.47 crore was released in April 2007 by the Government to the DVE under the SCP (Rs.1.76 crore) and TSP (Rs.71 lakhs) for 2007-08.
Out of this, Rs.1.97 crore was payable towards honoraria to the teachers, who imparted extra coaching to the SC and ST students and to supply study material to the students, so as to enable them to perform better in the examination. The balance amount was earmarked for improvement of infrastructure in schools. The Director, instead of proposing an action plan to utilise these funds as per the guidelines submitted in August 2007, came out with a proposal to utilise Rs.1.43 crore under SCP and Rs. 54 lakh under TSP to meet the salary/remuneration expenditure in respect of selected courses although the expenditure on this account was to be met out of general budgetary provisions.
The State Government approved the proposals sent in August 2007 by the Director and funds were released in the next two months to the colleges, concerned resulting in diversion of funds earmarked for providing extra coaching and study material to SC/ST students.
In view of the decline in the pass percentage of SC, ST students from an average 74.10 per cent (2002-04) to an average 57.72 per cent (2005-07), it was all the more essential for the Department to ensure extra coaching and additional study material to the Dalits.
The Government, the CAG said, in its reply in July 2009, argued that the funds under SCP and TSP were utilised, as sufficient funds were not available, during the early period of 2007-08 in the regular budget.
Not satisfied by the reply, the CAG said that it was not justifiable as these funds were meant for imparting extra coaching and to provide study material to the SC, ST students and fund diversion denying direct benefits contemplated by the Commission's schemes for them.
The Times Of India
Mayawati expresses unhappiness over encroachment on SC, ST land
PTI, Jun 19, 2010, 08.29pm IST
LUCKNOW: Taking a strong view on encroachment of land allotted to members of scheduled castes and tribes on pattas, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Mayawati directed officials to initiate immediate steps to ensure possession of land to the genuine people.
An official release quoting the chief minister said the directives have been issued to all the district magistrates to ensure that illegal occupants be evicted from the agricultural and housing land allotted to members of the scheduled castes and tribes on pattas.
The chief minister has also asked the respective divisional commissioners to keep an eye on the related issues and warned that action would be taken on those found lacking in this work.
The chief minister has also asked for taking action against illegal occupants under the relevant laws.
During the current financial year, 5596 people belonging to the SC and ST have been allotted 1054.879 1054.879 hectares of agriculture land, the release said adding till May 2010, 8369 people have been allotted 88.426 hectares housing land.
In a drive launched to remove illegal occupants from agricultural land, 74 FIRs have been filed and 88 people arrested, while four FIRs were lodged and 11 people arrested for illegal possession of housing land, the release added.
Times Of India
'Most Dalit students lack access to information on education'
Jun 20, 2010, 12.00am IST
Anoop Kumar , a Dalit social worker from Lakhimpur Kheri in Uttar Pradesh, started Insight, a Dalit student magazine, in 2004 with friends. Insight Foundation, with a grant from Ford Foundation, has now launched a telephone helpline (09999484249) and a portal (www.scststudents.org) for Dalit students. Kumar, 33, spoke to Shreya Roy Chowdhury:
What are the problems faced by Dalit students?
I was first exposed to the problems of caste at an engineering college in Kanpur. Dalit students were marked as weak students who didn't deserve to be there. The students lost confidence and there was no support system to help them. On my first day a professor said, 'those from SC/ST background need to work hard. Mayawati will not mark you, i will'.
When you enter higher education, your name is displayed under the schedule caste category and that becomes your identity. Caste abuse is very open, very blatant. Friend circles are formed based on a common background - fluency in English, dress-sense, food habits, caste and class. Dalit students are not articulate. They shy away from approaching others. We know they'd want to know our last names, where we come from, the merit number, which category we took admission under. We want to avoid those questions; we don't want to get identified. The upper castes do both the harassing and the complaining. They can have your opinion about reservation but a comment is taken personally.
You get information about education from social circles, family etc. But i'm the first in my family to come to Delhi. Most Dalit students have a similar background.
When and why was Insight started?
I came to Jawaharlal Nehru University in 2001 for a master's degree. I was already reading Ambedkar, Phule. I realised that what i thought of as a personal matter was a much bigger problem and that there's been an entire movement against it. I wanted to be a part of that movement. I found myself in a very different environment in JNU. In the politicised atmosphere there, you have space to say and do things. It had the kind of environment we lacked in small towns. I was groomed at the United Dalit Student Forum, which was active but without a platform for interaction. I wanted something concrete; a process by which a student is exposed to Dalit studies and issues and where a student can contribute. In 2004, i started Insight.
What was the response?
We started getting a lot of queries from other universities and within a year Insight was reaching 50 universities. We got articles from different parts of the country. We were creating space for ourselves within the system. That was lacking in the Dalit movement.
Tell us about the Helpline.
It was launched on May 27 (2010) and is funded by a Ford Foundation grant. Most of the information on education is available online, but most Dalit students lack access to internet. But they have access to mobiles and telephones. We target students from smaller towns who want admission in elite institutions like Delhi University, JNU, medical or other professional colleges. The idea is to provide information in Hindi and English about admission, courses, scholarships and also career counselling. Our national network has more than 1,000 Dalit and Adivasi student and faculty members. We also have a group of about 100 teachers and professionals who have volunteered to mentor aspirants.
Dalit Manch lays siege to DAC, burns effigy
Hundreds of Dalits, under the banner of Punjab Dalit Chetna Manch, laid siege to the District Administrative Complex (DAC) and burnt the effigy of the district administration for its alleged anti-Dalit approach.
Some protesters tried self-immolation, while some youngsters climbed up the rooftop of the DAC threatening to jump, but heavy police force, led by SP (City) Sukhwant Singh Gill and DSP (City-II) Swarandeep Singh managed to persuade the protesters from taking any drastic steps.
The protesters continued to squat in the middle of the road in front of the DAC, Phase I, for three hours and rented the air with slogans against the district administration and state government. SSP Gurpreet Singh Bhullar asked the Manch president Shamsher Singh to withdraw the protest while assuring to sort out the issue within three days.
The protest was staged against the attack on some Dalits, allegedly by some upper caste people at Tasauli village in Mohali district on May 28. Later some Dalit families were allegedly ousted from the village but no complaint has been registered by the police so far, alleged manch president.
Earlier, the protesters gathered at the Manch office in Sector 70 here, from where they marched towards the DAC. Holding black flags, banners, posters and placards with anti-administration and anti-government slogans, the protesters shouted the slogans against the anti-Dalit forces.
Manch president threatened to intensify the protest if the matter was not sorted out within next three days.
On behalf of
Dalits Media Watch Team
(An initiative of "Peoples Media Advocacy & Resource Centre-PMARC")
Peoples Media Advocacy & Resource Centre- PMARC has been initiated with the support from group of senior journalists, social activists, academics and intellectuals from Dalit and civil society to advocate and facilitate Dalits issues in the mainstream media. To create proper & adequate space with the Dalit perspective in the mainstream media national/ International on Dalit issues is primary objective of the PMARC.
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