Guest Post by Tanvi Ahuja
The recent Dalit atrocity in Sunped, Ballabgarh is a stark reminder of how caste continues to shape our society and our very existence and dignity. Yes, it was an atrocity and any attempts to hide the same in the garb of personal dispute or family feud are not only misleading but a great disservice to the lived experiences of Dalits in this country.
Sunped is just another Jat- dominated village in the caste underbelly of the state of Haryana, famous for the Mirchpur atrocity that saw a 70- year old Dalit and his daughter burnt alive in 2010. Jitender’s is one of the approximately 80 Dalit families in Sunped, comprising the Chamaars and Balmikis. His immediate family and relatives are an educated lot; many of them employed in stable private sector jobs. The family also has a strong political lineage- Jitender’s grandfather and brother, Jagmal have held the office of Sarpanch in the last two decades, except in 2005-10 when the wife of the main accused Balwant became the Sarpanch on the reserved seat for women. It was Balwant however who called the shots throughout his wife’s term. Continue reading What the Sunped Atrocity Tells Us About Caste in Haryana: Tanvi Ahuja