The Untouchables

Topics: Caste system in India, Dalit, India Pages: 6 (2350 words) Published: March 31, 2013
The Untouchables

There are over 100 million people in India that some people do not even consider to be human, that cannot fend for their families, and are abused mentally and physically every single day. That is more than the populations of France and the United Kingdom combined (Barbara). Those people are called untouchables, and they are the lowest part of India’s caste system. A Caste System is a system where there are social classes determined by someone’s heredity (“Caste…”). The caste system in India violates every single human right someone could have. Upper castes members constantly abuse Dalit people, known as untouchables, whether it’s having change thrown at them or being raped (“Dalit Hu…”). Dalit people cannot escape being neglected. Legislation in India was created in 1989, called The Prevention of Atrocities Act. This was an attempt to try and stop the despicable acts that have been placed upon the Dalit people, but since then violence has intensified (Mayell). Also, very little has been done to enforce laws. In fact, 25,455 crimes have been committed against Dalits, most of which have been classified as “false” complaints (Mayell). Every hour two Dalits are assaulted, every day three Dalit women are raped, two Dalits are murdered, and two Dalit homes are set on fire (Mayell). The untouchables in India do not have the right to a clean environment; they do not have the right to pick their occupation, and do not have the right to be in love with who ever they want. Dalits have been being neglected for over 100 years, and it is time for it to end; The United Nations needs to step in and help the Dalit people.

A clean environment is something everyone should have the right to, yet Dalits live in impoverished neighborhoods with cardboard houses filled with seven to eight people right next to sewer drainage systems. It is extremely overcrowded and this leads to unsanitary conditions that is unfit for any human being to live in. This is what it has come to in India and it is wrong. Imagine a homeless person living in a cardboard box under the freeway in Oakland. Now transport that image to the middle of a sewage line, they have no food stamps, no electricity, and very few vehicles. That is what the “normal” environment is for untouchables. Since untouchables are denied the access to jobs that pay a wage that they can live off of, some of them are forced to live in separate segregated villages on the outskirts of forests where some fend for themselves by farming and others go to work for little pay (Hampton). Some of the untouchables houses lack proper siding, their floorboards are warping and rotting away, and the windows are shattered (“India’s Da…”). These are the lucky untouchables. Other untouchables live in cardboard boxes, literally with only a single inch or two separating them from the outdoors where wild cats and venomous snakes lay lurking in the dark. Most untouchables also do not have a bathroom. Many have to defecate into garbage later to be thrown in their backyard or dumped in the water. Many villages do not allow untouchables access to clean water, so many untouchables are forced to drink out of the river or lake that people have dumped their feces into (“India’s Da…”). Also, small Dalit villages and houses made out of cardboard and plastic may be demolished at any time. In these villages and houses contains just about 4,000,000 people (Barbara). Politicians use this to their advantage by abusing these small communities in their respective state (“Dalit Free…”). They threaten that they will “bring the wrecking ball” if they do not vote for them that coming election (Popham). The Dalits are already living in a dangerous, unsanitary, impoverished neighborhood. Upper caste members should not be taking advantage of Dalits by threatening them. In many instances, the politician does not win the election, and he does demolish...

Cited: "Dalit Freedom Network // News ." Dalit Freedom Network: End Dalit Trafficking,Prevention Through Education. N.p., 9 Oct. 2011. Web. 30 Nov. 2011. .
"Dalit Human Rights." Dalit Human Rights. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2011. .
Hampton, Andrea. "The Untouchables." Home - CSU, Chico. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2011. .
"India 's Dalit communities - Our approach - About us - Karuna." Karuna. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2011. .
"India 's Untouchables | Cultural Survival." Cultural Survival | Partnering with Indigenous Peoples to Defend their Lands, Languages and Cultures. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2011. .
Mayell, Hillary. "India 's "Untouchables" Face Violence, Discrimination." Daily Nature and Science News and Headlines | National Geographic News. N.p., 2 June 2003. Web. 7 Dec. 2011. .
Rosenberg,  Matt. "India Population - The Population of India." Geography Home Page - Geography at N.p., 1 Apr. 2011. Web. 7 Dec. 2011. .
Sengupta, Somini. "Crusader Sees Wealth as Cure for Caste Bias -" The New York Times - Breaking News, World News & Multimedia. N.p., 29 Aug. 2008. Web. 2 Dec. 2011. .
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • The Untouchables: Mise-En-Scene Analysis Essay
  • The Untouchables
  • The Untouchables Summary Essay
  • Essay on Untouchables
  • Untouchables Essay
  • The Untouchables Essay
  • Untouchable Essay
  • untouchables and gandhi Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free