Is the diversity factor the holder or the divider of India? This question we all should ask ourselves once in a day. The unfortunate thing to realise is that we adult don’t leave schools and young minds from our orthodox mentality. This time Tamil Nadu School faced it. The issue come to the fore when the recent circular of the school education department points out the discriminatory practice going on.
On July 31st of this year, a circular from the director of school education department was sent to senior education officers. It quoted that, in some schools, students were made to wear colour-coded wrist bands and also forehead tilaks to show caste significance. The officials were ordered to stop such discriminatory practices.
The real irony came out when the School Education Minister K.A. Sengottaiyan claimed that he wasn’t aware of any such circular. He ordered officials, not to implement such circular even before it was shown to him.
The ambiguity remains same till the IAS trainee at Lal Bahadur Shastri Academy of Administration in Mussoorie looked onto the topic. He gave a presentation on the same issue to the government. It showcased the void of unawareness of minister about the circular implementation.
Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi General Secretary, D. Ravikumar pointed out some incidents. He stated that oppressed castes are forced to clean toilets in schools by teachers and headmasters in various places of Tamil Nadu and insists that the circular should be implemented at once.
DISCRIMINATION ALL AROUND
- This discrimination cycle is not new. It started right from the Anganwadis where students from upper caste bring their food vessels so that by mistake they won’t consume food from Dalits plates. Moreover, Dalits weren’t allowed to cook food in any Anganwadi.
- Another incident is related to the maths teacher teaching students by marking Dalit students as a minus, and upper-class students as plus and thus minus has to depend on plus for survival.
- Even basic necessity like the toilet isn’t spared, there also this Dalit and non-Dalit cycle runs.
- Students are divided on their caste basis for the roles in school works. Dalits are given small responsibilities even sometimes for sewage cleaning and cleaning of the school and upper class for high departmental posts.
WAYS FOR FUTURE
Article 14 of the constitution provides equality of all people before the law. Clause (c) of section 8 & 9 of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education act, 2009, cast a duty on the State government to ensure that the children belonging to weaker sections and those belonging to a disadvantaged group are not discriminated against.
More than anything, there is a need to make students feel ashamed to observe caste discrimination. We need counsellors, and a full check on the schools stated Mr Kathir, who is a social worker.
The IAS rest his case by emphasising on the political parties vision, which is to involve everyone to wipe out this casteism before it wipes out the human race.
The point to think about is that we have so many acts, articles, laws against the discrimination still this orthodox caste system prevails in our society. Where are we growing towards? Is this the diversity we are boasting? Is this the culture we accolade about all around the globe?