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


DALITS - DOSSIER PRESS RELEASES
2015 - 2014 - 2013 - 2012 - 2011 - 2010 - 2009 - 2008 - 2007 - 2006 - 2005 - 2004 - 2003 - 2002 - 2001 - 2000 - <2000
Dec 21, 2016:
Fabric of Slavery: Large-scale child slavery in Indian spinning mills making yarn for international garment brands (PRESS RELEASE ICN):
New research by the India Committee of Netherlands (ICN) shows that various forms of modern slavery, including child slavery, are found in more than 90% of the spinning mills in South India. These spinning mills produce yarn for India, Bangladeshi and Chinese garment factories that produce for the Western market.
The report Fabric of Slavery exposes the scale on which young girls and women - the majority of which are Dalits or 'outcastes' - are enslaved by employers who withhold their wages or lock them up in company-controlled hostels. They work long hours, face sexual harassment and do not even earn the minimum wage. Gerard Oonk, director of ICN: "We have raised the issue for five years now, but even to us the scale of this problem came as a shock."
Jun 1, 2016:
Infamous NGO Committee excludes human rights defenders from the UN (PRESS RELEASE IDSN):
For the 18th time since 2008, the Committee on NGOs has deferred IDSN’s application – the longest pending one of its kind – for UN ECOSOC consultative status. Two more questions from India have yet again delayed the process.

2014
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Jun 4, 2014:
UN experts slam India’s child rights policies - UP Govt too under fire (PRESS RELEASE NCDHR) link opent in nieuw venster:
India’s child rights policies came under sharp attack at a crucial meeting of UN experts on 2-3 June in Geneva. The UN Committee on Rights of Child had met to review the progress made under the provisions of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) and its two Optional Protocols in India.
Apr 4, 2014:
‘Small Steps - Big Challenges’ in Tamil Nadu’s textile industry: Garment brands not transparent on tackling bonded labour in India (PRESS RELEASE FNV Mondiaal/ICN):
Most Dutch and international companies importing garments from the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu refuse to be transparent about if and how they tackle bonded labour at their suppliers. An estimated 100,000 young children and teenage girls are victims of 'bonded labour' or 'modern slavery'. These girls - mostly Dalit ('outcaste') - live in hostels, with little freedom of movement, underpaid for long working-days and working under unhealthy conditions.
This is an important conclusion of the paper Small Steps, Big Challenges - Update on (tackling) exploitation of girls and young women in the garment supply chain of South India that FNV Mondiaal (international department of Dutch trade union confederation) and the India Committee of the Netherlands have just published.
2013
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Jun 7, 2013:
Take action to improve conditions for Dalit women (PRESS RELEASE Human Rights Watch/IMADR/Minority Rights Group International/IDSN):
United Nations member states should focus urgent attention and decisive action to improve conditions for Dalit women, four international non-governmental organisations said today. The combination of caste and gender makes millions of Dalit women extremely vulnerable to discrimination and violence, including rape, forced prostitution and modern forms of slavery.
2012
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Dec 13, 2012:
European Parliament adopts historic resolution on Dalits (PRESS RELEASE IDSN):
A strongly worded resolution on caste discrimination in India was debated and adopted today [Dec 13, 2012] by the European Parliament in Strasbourg. The Parliament condemned the high number of atrocities committed against Dalits in India and the Indian government’s insufficient action on the issue of caste discrimination.
Mar 1, 2011:
MEPs: The EU must act now to help end one of the biggest human rights issues in the world (PRESS RELEASE IDSN):
MEPs stated that EU action must be taken to help end caste discrimination, affecting 260 million people worldwide. The statements came during a hearing on caste discrimination in South Asia, at the European Parliament Monday afternoon. This was also the message delivered by Dalit rights advocators at the hearing, who informed MEPs that concerted action to combat caste discrimination through EU development work, trade agreements and political dialogues, must be taken if development goals in caste-affected countries including India, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Nepal, are to be achieved and human rights respected.
Apr 15, 2010:
National Call to Abolish Untouchability: oproep tot uitbannen onaanraakbaarheid door Indiase organisaties (PRESS RELEASE E&E Coalition):
Even after 60 years of India’s constitutional rule abolition of untouchability still remains only a pipedream in India. While discrimination based on descent and occupation continues unabated those caste forces that practice untouchability in its varying forms are having a field day in India. It is not enough that the abolition of untouchability is enshrined in the constitution of India. It is of paramount important that the enforcement of related laws are stringently followed so that Dalits in this country can live as citizens with freedom and dignity. While discrimination based on descent and occupation denies many opportunities to Dalits to come into level playing field the continuing practice of untouchability serves a deathblow to their human psyche that is essential for citizens. Without freedom and dignity no people can be expected to exercise their democratic rights and responsibilities as citizens.
Nov 22, 2005:
UK Government to raise Caste Discrimination Internationally (PRESS RELEASE Dalit Solidarity Network (UK)):
The UK Government is committed to raising all forms of discrimination at an international level, including that of caste or untouchability. This was affirmed by Douglas Alexander, Foreign Office Minister of State, in the first formal debate on caste discrimination in the British Parliament held today. He outlined a number of ways in which the Government will take this forward, including more detailed monitoring of UK aid programmes, further discussions with EU colleagues about the human rights agenda to be raised with India before the end of the UK Presidency and more encouragement to the UN to forge ahead with its three-year study of caste discrimination.
Sep 4, 2005:
Press release and report on Dalit Houses Burnt Down in Haryana (PRESS RELEASE National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights):
The National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights (NCDHR) condemns the looting and burning of Dalit houses at Gohana in Haryana. An NCDHR delegation comprising Mr. N. Paul Divakar, Dr. Vimal Thorat, Dr. Umakant and Ms. Shabnam Hashmi from ANHAD met Mr. Ahmad Patel, the Political Advisor to Mrs. Sonia Gandhi, the President of Indian National Congress, on 3 September in New Delhi and apprised him about the situation in Gohana. Later on a meeting with Mrs. Sonia Gandhi and Ms. Selja, the Union Minister for Urban Employment and Poverty Alleviation along with Mr. Ahmad Patel was also arranged wherein the aforesaid delegation urged Mrs. Gandhi to ensure justice for the helpless Dalits.
Jun 23, 2005:
Press release on Reservation in Private Sector (PRESS RELEASE National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights):
An NCDHR Team met Ms. Meira Kumar, the Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment on 22 June 2005 in New Delhi in order to brief the Minister on the need for promulgation of a Central Legislation for Reservation in Private Sector. The NCDHR team emphasised that in the Indian society the exclusion and discrimination faced by Dalits is part of the societal norms which has continued even in this age of information technology. In the absence of a Legislation, any promise of welfare measures by the Corporate sector would remain meaningless.
Jun 21, 2005:
Report demands UK companies act on caste discrimination (PRESS RELEASE Dalit Solidarity Network (UK)):
A report launched yesterday at the AGM of the Dalit Solidarity Network (UK) urges UK companies currently outsourcing to India to address the crucial issue of caste discrimination. The introduction by DSN Chair Revd David Haslam and the former UNISON General Secretary Rodney Bickerstaffe draws parallels with investment in South Africa during the apartheid hears. It says if there is a discriminatory system, unless there is active intervention then investors are inevitably contributing to such a system. Rodney Bickerstaffe said ‘This is an issue which all UK companies operating in South Asia should address, and the trades unions active in those companies should be pressing them to do so’.
May 14, 2004:
Press Release of National Dalit NGO Federation, Nepal (PRESS RELEASE National Dalit NGO Federation):
After the Royal step of October 4, 2002, there is still political crisis in the Kingdom of Nepal. Since then, two prime ministers have been changed so far and country is in the process of looking for the third prime minister. On behalf of more than 4.5 million Dalits, who are laborious, rich in arts, skills and social architecture have been suffering from discrimination based on caste and analogous system, we would like to raise our voice against this. We do not feel to repeat the fact that the umbrella organisation of more than 200 such Dalit Organisations are always in favour of democracy, human rights and social equality.
Aug 22, 2002:
The global dimensions of discrimination based on 'caste and analogous systems of inherited status' addressed in historic UN decisions (PRESS STATEMENT International Dalit Solidarity Network):
Yesterday, the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) adopted an historic document focusing on discrimination based on 'caste and analogous systems of inherited status'. The adoption of this document - called a General Recommendation - follows a thematic discussion convened by CERD on 8-9 August, in which the global dimensions of caste discrimination and similar forms of social hierarchy were confronted and challenged.



Dec 13, 2012: 
European Parliament adopts historic resolution on Dalits (press release IDSN)
Jul 18, 2012: 
Brands and politicians are starting to act: Bonded (child) labour in Indian garment industry draws global attention (press release SOMO/ICN)
May 24, 2012: 
Dalit rights activists enraged at the failure of Indian delegations to address questions raised at the UN (press release NCDHR)
Apr 25, 2012: 
Young Dalit women exploited in Indian garment industry: Despite industry's promises, young Dalit women continue to suffer exploitative conditions, reveals new report 'Maid in India' (press release SOMO/ICN)
Mar 5, 2012: 
Still 'Captured by Cotton'? Despite some improvements, priblems persist in the garment supply chain (press release SOMO/ICN)
Dec 2, 2011: 
Urgent Global Call for Action to End Caste Discrimination (press release IDSN)
Jul 1, 2011: 
Large majority in Dutch Parliament supports motion to combat caste discrimination: Dalit Network Netherlands pleased about Dutch policy support for 250 million Dalits (press release DNN)
May 20, 2011: 
Exploited Dalit Girls Produce Garments in India for European and US Markets (media release SOMO/ICN)
Mar 1, 2011: 
MEPs: The EU must act now to help end one of the biggest human rights issues in the world (press release IDSN)
Apr 15, 2010: 
National Call to Abolish Untouchability by Indian Dalit- and non-Dalit organizations (press release E&E Coalition)
Mar 9, 2010: 
Ten years of global struggle against caste discrimination (press release IDSN)
Apr 22, 2009: 
UN Racism Conference fails to address caste-based discrimination affecting 260 million people (press release HRW/IDSN/....)
Apr 20, 2009: 
Durban Review Conference: Break the UN silence on caste discrimination (press release HRW/IDSN/NCDHR)
Mar 27, 2009: 
European Parliament: Ensure that Dalits benefit from EU-India Free Trade Agreement (press release IDSN)
Mar 25, 2009: 
India must show leadership in combating caste-based discrimination, says UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (press release IDSN)
Apr 11, 2008: 
India questioned on caste discrimination in the UN (press release IMADR/NCDHR/IDSN)
May 16, 2007: 
Rights Groups Issue Concerns over India Uncontested bid for Re-election to the UN Human Rights Council (press statement FORUM-ASIA)
Mar 12, 2007: 
India: UN Finds Pervasive Abuse Against Dalits (press release CHR&GJ/IDSN/HRW)
Feb 21, 2007: 
'Making things worse': Lessons on caste discrimination from post-tsunami relief (media release DNN/IDSN)
Feb 13, 2007: 
India: 'Hidden Apartheid' of Discrimination Against Dalits (press release HRW/CHR&GJ)
Dec 19, 2006: 
European Parliament: India must get rid of caste discrimination (media release IDSN)
Nov 24, 2006: 
"We want to transform our pain to power": International Conference seeks urgent action on discrimination and violence against Dalit women (press release IDSN)
Mar 20, 2006: 
Caste-affected states do not reply to UN survey (media release IDSN)
Nov 22, 2005: 
UK Government to raise Caste Discrimination Internationally (press release Dalit Solidarity Network (UK))
Sep 4, 2005: 
Press release and report on "Dalit Houses Burnt Down in Haryana" (National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights)
Aug 11, 2005: 
Caste Discrimination Root Cause of Conflict in Nepal (press release CHRSJ)
Jun 23, 2005: 
Press release on Reservation in Private Sector (National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights)
Jun 21, 2005: 
Report demands UK companies act on caste discrimination (press release Dalit Solidarity Network (UK))
Apr 19, 2005: 
Dalits break through UN wall of silence on caste (press release ISDN)
Jan 11, 2005: 
Dalits face severe discrimination in India's tsunami relief efforts (press release ISDN)
Nov 5, 2004: 
EU-India Summit: Human Rights must be on the agenda! (media release FIDH, OMCT, IDSN)
Oct 20, 2004: 
Start of campaign 'Stop Caste Discrimination - Support the Dalits' (press release DNN)
May 14, 2004: 
Press Release of National Dalit NGO Federation, Nepal
Apr 26, 2004: 
Dutch government criticises India on caste discrimination and Gujarat
Jan 12, 2004: 
India's Dalits take to the road to raise awareness of 'hidden apartheid' (press release Minority Rights Group)