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Ramdas Athavle defers from government advisory, believes nothing wrong in using ‘Dalit’ word

Ramdas Athawale

Mumbai | Republican Party of India (RPI) chief and Union Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment Ramdas Athavle on Tuesday informed that RPI would move to Supreme Court against the Central government’s advisory which refrained media over the use of word ‘Dalit’

Going against the government’s view Athavle while speaking to media said,” The terms Schedule Caste and Schedule Tribe are already in use in government records, but we are of the view that the word ‘Dalit’ should be used.” He further added, “Republican Party of India is approaching the Supreme Court to challenge the advisory.”

Earlier while addressing the media on September 6, Ramdas Athavale had said, “We respect the court, even our ministry had issued a directive to use the word ‘Scheduled Caste’ instead of ‘Dalit’ in official documents, but it is not right to stop the media from using the word.”

The Ministry of Information and Broadcast on August 7 in a letter to private television channels said the media “May refrain from using the nomenclature Dalit in compliance with the Bombay High Court order”. While the Bombay High court on June 6 had suggested that “suitable directions” should be issued to the press council and the media within 6 weeks.

In January 2017, the Madhya Pradesh High Court while hearing a petition had said, “There was “no doubt” that the word should not be used by the government, as it has not been mentioned in the Constitution”.

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