India Committee of the Netherlands
+++ In solidarity with the oppressed in India +++


Dalits - Information
Dalit Women Speak Out! conference – forming a collective for resistance
IDSN, Jan 19, 2018
The Dalit Women Speak Out! conference in Pune was a cele­bration of Dalit women power and resistance and a platform from which to map out new strategies and strengthen the collective force. The conference presented an open and free space for over 400 Dalit women from across India. »
Amnesty International: Dalit human rights defenders face serious risk
IDSN, Dec 20, 2017
A new report released by Amnesty International paints a grim picture of the situation for human rights defenders across the globe who face death, persecution and harassment for carrying out human rights work. The report raises particular concern for Dalit human rights defenders in India. »
European Parliament report urges EU to step up action on caste discrimination
IDSN, Dec 14, 2017
In its 2017 Annual Report the European Parliament calls for an EU policy on caste discrimination and urges the EU and its Member States to “intensify efforts and support related initiatives....". »
Young Dalit activists speak out at the UN Minority Forum on youth and inclusion
IDSN, Dec 13, 2017
Young Dalit activists played an active role at the 2017 Forum on Minority Issues, which took place in Geneva from 30 November to 1 December. Dalit women from Nepal and India, forming part of an IDSN delegation, gave powerful presentations. »
India’s ‘Rat Eaters’ are so poor that even the Dalits look down on them
South China Morning Post, Dec 7, 2017
The 2.5 million Musahars – “Rat Eaters” – are one of India’s most marginalised communities. Even the browbeaten Dalits from the lowest rung of India’s caste hierarchy look down on them. They are the poorest among the poorest and rarely hear about or get access to government schemes. »
11 Books to Read If You Want to Understand Caste in India
Literary Hub, Dec 4, 2017
Caste is not unique to India, and no country should be reduced to a single social category, no matter how intrinsic a part of its reality. Nevertheless, to understand India you have to understand caste, whose intricacies are unarguably difficult. »
Everyone Blames Me – new report on barriers to justice for sexual assault survivors in India
IDSN, Nov 17, 2017
Survivors of rape and other forms of sexual assault in India face severe barriers to justice and are not receiving the support that the State are obligated to offer them, finds a new report by Human Rights Watch. The report raises particular concern for ‘low caste’ survivors and other marginalised groups. »
UN Expert criticizes India’s sanitation drive for exacerbating manual scavenging
IDSN, Nov 14, 2017
The UN Expert on Water and Sanitation, Léo Heller, has stated that the failure to end the practice of manual scavenging in India coupled with the construction of more non-flush toilets, is contributing to an increase in the discriminatory practice of manual scavenging. »
Dalit rights activist Chandrashekhar Azad's detention is a mockery of law: Amnesty International India
Sikh Siyasat News, Nov 10, 2017
The arrest and detention of Chandrashekhar Azad under the National Security Act a day after he was granted bail is a brazen attempt to sidestep human rights safeguards in the country in the ordinary criminal justice system. »
IDSN Roadmap to the UNOHCHR Guidance tool on Descent-Based Discrimination
IDSN, Nov 9, 2017
IDSN published a Roadmap to the UNOHCHR Guidance Tool on Descent-Based Discrimination: Key challenges and strategic approaches to combat caste-based discrimination and analogous forms of discrimination. The Roadmap serves as an introduction to the concepts and recommendations covered in the tool. »
Urgent Appeal for Action – Dalit Professor attempted killed in need of immediate protection
IDSN, Nov 8, 2017
The HRDA-India issued an urgent appeal for the protection of Professor Kancha Ilaiah Shepherd – a political analyst, human rights activist and one of India’s most prominent Dalit thinkers. Prof. Shepherd was allegedly attempted killed in his car.... »
Urgent Appeal for Action – Death threats and withdrawal of police protection for a Dalit human rights activist
IDSN, Nov 2, 2017
HRDA-India issued an urgent appeal for action to protect Dalit human rights defender Rajat Kalsan, working to help Dalits gain justice and protection from abuses as a lawyer and activist. »
Disaster mismanagement: How, following floods, Bihar’s marginalized sections faced discrimination
Counterview, Oct 27, 2017
The National Dalit Watch, the National Campaign on Dalit human Rights, the All India Dalit Mahila Adhikar Manch and the Jan Jagran Shakti Sangathan has released its report, Bihar Floods 2017: Immediate Needs Assessment and Inclusion Monitoring of Responses towards Affected Dalits, Minorities & Adivasis in Araria and Kishanganj. »
UN water and sanitation expert to visit India in November
IDSN, Oct 26, 2017
The UN Special Rapporteur will visit India to examine the extent to which people’s rights to safe drinking water and sanitation are being realized. IDSN and Jan Sahas have made a joint submission drawing attention to the inhuman practice of manual scavenging. »
MEPs call on EU Presidents to address caste discrimination at the EU-India summit
IDSN, Oct 20, 2017
A cross-party group of MEPs has sent an open letter to the Presidents of the European Council and of the European Commission, calling on them to address caste discrimination directly at the October EU-India Summit. »
Oppressed by Dalits: living as the lowest among the lowest
The Hindu, Oct 9, 2017
Scholarly work sheds light on Dalit caste groups oppressing a community of dhobis. »
Indian Government responds to UN rights review – accepts key recommendations on caste but not on ensuring space for civil society
IDSN, Oct 9, 2017
India has accepted 9 UPR-recommendations concerning caste-based discrimination, but none of the recommendations related to protecting civil society space and amending the foreign contributions act. »
Campaign and new report highlight caste discrimination in schools
IDSN, Oct 9, 2017
Dalit children being made to sit and eat separately from other children, being beaten, abused and forced to do humiliating tasks, form part of the cases highlighted in the report Exclusion in Schools – A Study on Practice of Discrimination and Violence. »
Indian men 'beaten up over moustaches'
BBC News, Oct 4, 2017
Some Indians are changing their avatars on Twitter and WhatsApp in support of two men attacked for having moustaches. A young man in Gujarat went to the police and accused some upper caste men of beating him up because he'd grown a moustache. Also, his cousin was knifed, reportedly by the same men. »
IDSN recommendations for the UN Human Rights Council September session
IDSN, Sep 7, 2017
In the context of the reports being presented at the 36th UN Human Rights Council session (11–29 September 2017), IDSN is urging states to pay particular attention to caste-based discrimination being included on a par with other forms of discrimination in thematic HRC resolutions [....] »
Dalit flood victims need food, water and medicine
IDSN, Sep 6, 2017
Following the devastating floods in South Asia serious concern for Dalit communities affected by the disaster is being reported. IDSN’s members are on the ground responding and monitoring the situation as it unfolds. »
Rights defenders: legislation meant to stop caste atrocities is failing
IDSN, Aug 31, 2017
Dalit and Adivasi Civil Society Organisations, Human Rights Defenders from across India met in New Delhi to discuss the status of implementation of India’s legislation to prevent atrocities against Dalits and Adivasis. »
India cuts off funding to IDSN member for reporting to UN Experts
IDSN, Aug 15, 2017
IDSN member People’s Watch is fighting a legal battle in the Indian courts to regain their foreign funding license. The organisation has been charged by the Ministry of Home Affairs with “using foreign contributions to the detriment of India’s image.” »
UN Side-event: Blocking of civil society access to the UN must end now
IDSN, Jun 22, 2017
In a UN side-event in New York several states and civil society representatives spoke about how the NGO committee, which grants UN ECOSOC accreditation, is effectively blocking legitimate civil society participation at the UN. Several shocking examples of harassment by the NGO Committee were shared including IDSN’s 9-year deferral, due to perpetual questioning from one state on the Committee. »
Violence against Dalits particularly becomes virulent when they challenge caste domination
Counterview, Jun 13, 2017
Fifty five Dalit houses were burnt down on May 5 in Shabbir­pur village in UP. Attackers belonged to the dominant Rajput community, and were armed with swords, spears and lathis. Twelve Dalits received serious injuries. The attack continued for five hours. »
Cow vigilantes, a political tool to silent democratic dissent: Have we entered a lawless state?
Counterview, Jun 5, 2017
The year 2016 brought new perpetrators for Dalits—the cow vigilantes. Absence of preventive measures to curb such violence by the state has been the gauge of its complicity. »
Rights groups assail India’s human rights record
UCAN India, May 29, 2017
Alliance for Justice and Accountability, a coalition of Indian Christians, Dalits, Muslims and progressive forces in the US, released a comprehensive report on human rights abuses against India’s social and religious minorities. The report released on May 23 in Washington said the abuses have increased since the BJP government came to power. »
UN Members States: India must do more to uphold the rights of Dalits
IDSN, May 24, 2017
At the UN review of the human rights situation in India, more than a dozen UN Member States recommended actions to ensure the rights of Dalits. »
HRW: India must stop ‘cow protection’ vigilante violence against Dalits and Muslims
IDSN, Apr 27, 2017
Human Rights Watch has released a report on the issue of violence against Dalits and Muslims in India, being carried out by so called ‘cow protection’ extremist Hindu groups. The organisation demands that the Government act to bring justice to the victims and curb this disturbing trend. »
Victory for 2,700 sanitation workers in Mumbai as Supreme Court grants them permanent jobs, Apr 11, 2017
It has taken the workers 10 years to get relief from an exploitative contract system followed by the Mumbai municipal corporation. »
Several features of caste-based segregation in UP village Saaraspur akin to US’ racial segregation
Counterview, Apr 11, 2017
Case study of how the residential segregation of Scheduled Castes (Dalits) in a village is associated with deprivation in access to adequate housing and basic amenities such as domestic electricity, piped drinking water, lavatories, common open spaces, street lighting, and drainage. »
Landmark UN guidance tool on caste discrimination launched in Kathmandu
IDSN, Mar 31, 2017
In a historic event in Kathmandu, the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) launched a comprehensive guidance tool addressing caste-based discrimination. »
Report: Dalit workers in India’s leather industry suffer serious rights abuses
IDSN, Mar 20, 2017
A report released by the India Committee on the Netherlands finds that workers in India’s leather industry suffer serious labour and human rights violations. Most of the 2,5 million leather workers are found to be Dalits and Muslims, exploited due to their marginalised status. India supplies leather to huge global brands. »
Bangladesh must step up efforts to address caste discrimination say rights activists at UN review
IDSN, Mar 17, 2017
IDSN members the Bangladesh Dalit and Excluded Rights Movement (BDERM) and Network of Non-Mainstreamed Marginalized Communities (NNMC), took part in the UN Human Rights Committee (CCPR) review of Bangladesh in March, 2017. »
UPR 2017 recommendations: Caste discrimination in India and the UK
IDSN, Mar 15, 2017
India and the UK will be up for review by the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) mechanism of the United Nations Human Rights Council on 4 May 2017. »
Dalits - Advocacy
European Parliament report urges EU to step up action on caste discrimination
In its 2017 Annual Report the European Parliament calls for an EU policy on caste discrimination and urges the EU and its Member States to “intensify efforts and support related initiatives....".
IDSN, Dec 14, 2017
Answers to Parliamentary Questions by Member Voordewind (ChristianUnion)
(subm. Jan 31, 2017) to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation on the exclusion of civil society organisations by the Indian government
Feb 13, 2017
Answers to Questions European Parliament
(subm. Mar 3, 2015) to the European Commission on caste discrimination
May 14, 2015
Answers to Dutch Parliamentary Questions by member Voordewind (ChristianUnion)
(subm. Oct 31, 2014) about the report Flawed Fabrics on modern slavery and child labour in the production chain of clothing brands
Nov 14, 2014
Sexual violence against Dalit women: Minister Timmermans discusses Dalit issue with Indian government - commitment in UN still largely absent
MPs from the Dutch political parties ChristianUnion, Socialist Party, GreenLeft, D66 and SGP urged the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Timmermans on June 11 to raise the issue of mostly unpunished violence against Dalit women with the Indian government, the UN Human Rights Council and the EU.
DNN, Jun 23, 2014