Again we lost another Dalit research scholar. J. Muthukrishanan, a research scholar at the JNU who exposed discrimination in educational institutions was found hanging. The alleged suicide once again underlines the need for proportional representation of Dalits in government administration to make it free from caste-based bias. Indeed, in government machinery where utmost neutrality needs to be maintained requires the presence of the Dalits and women to have a plural character. Our Parliament is an ideal example of proportional representation where every state sends as many Members of Parliament as in proportion to its population. No federal and plural country can afford to do away with this system and introduce meritocratic yardstick.
Indian cricket team where merit is the sole criterion of selection does not have any representation of many states of our country. It is okay for a cricket team. But it would be ludicrous if our Parliament fails to have representation of all the Indian states. As a matter fact, legislature, executive and judiciary are supposed to uphold justice for all and representation for all.
Moreover, does meritocracy really mean anything in an unequal society? The victims of class obstacles are facing Himalayan monetary constraints and the victims of caste hatred gigantic social and psychological barriers right from their childhood. It is certainly not one’s merit to born into one’s family!
Poor people find it really hard to get food and shelter let alone getting opportunity to show their merit. Dalits on the other hand have to withstand nagging negative comments from their neighbours, teachers, classmates and colleagues.
Further, Dalits have been brainwashed for centuries into believing that they are incapable to do many things which only higher castes can do. Indeed, these social, economic and psychological barriers cannot let their victim realize her/ his potentiality.
First of all, we must ensure a level playing field free from caste bias and class hurdle before speaking against proportional representation of Dalits in government administration.
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© 2016 State Times Daily Newspaper