How Unreliable Data On Dalit Christians & Muslims Expose Them To Discrimination – By Shreehari Paliath
The exclusion of Dalit Christians and Muslims from the Scheduled Caste (SC) category, and the lack of reliable government data on them, deprives these communities of the constitutional benefits extended to Dalits from other religious backgrounds, say experts.
Currently, only Hindu, Sikh and Buddhist Dalits are enumerated as SC. Before the previous Census in 2011, the Centre had decided to enumerate overall caste data in a separate exercise – the Socio Economic and Caste Census (SECC) – but the data were not released.
Caste is traditionally associated with the practise of Hinduism but people from marginalised communities who converted to other religions have continued to face discrimination. To deal with this, the SC category was extended to include Sikhs in 1956 and Buddhists in 1990. However, this was not done for Dalit Christians and Muslims….