//Dalit Christians protest against `discrimination'

Dalit Christians protest against `discrimination'

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Council of Dalit Christians, Kerala, has accused the Left Democratic Front (LDF) and the United Democratic Front (UDF) of discriminating against the Dalit Christians.

Addressing a convention held here on Sunday to mark the culmination of a vehicle rally that began from Kannur on March 18, council general convenor V.J. George said that though the Dalit Christians formed seven per cent of the population, they have been denied due representation in the Assembly since 1960. Both fronts have been denying seats to the Dalit Christians. All political parties include the cause of Dalit Christians in their manifesto, but none raised the issues in Parliament, he said.

Council chairman Peter Anakkal said in his presidential address that when the Kerala Congress was formed in 1965, the party had promised to give Kalloopara Assembly segment to Dalit Christians. But the party failed to honour its commitment.

Council leaders who addressed the convention said the members of the Dalit Christians community were aware of the apathy of the parties and would react against it in the Assembly elections. The council will also take out a march to the Secretariat on Monday to press its demands. The Pentecostal Inter-Church Council of India (PICC) has expressed solidarity with the Council of Dalit Christians. PICC national general secretary O.M. Rajakutty said in a release here that the council would support the move to secure the rights of Dalit Christians. Mr. Peter Anakkal will inaugurate the march and council leaders will address the march. A rights convention will be held at T.J.M. Hall, L.M.S. Compound, in the afternoon.

Meanwhile, the Pentecostal Inter-Church Council of India has expressed solidarity with the Secretariat march of the Council of Dalit Christians on Monday. PICC national general secretary O.M. Rajaukutty said in a release here that the council would support the move to secure the rights of Dalit Christians

 http://www.hindu.com/2006/03/27/stories/2006032709010300.htm