HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
KATHMANDU: A sub-committee formed under the Parliamentary Committee on Women, Children and Social Welfare to take stock of the prevalence of caste based discrimination today submitted its report.
The 11-member panel, led by lawmaker Binod Pahadi, prepared the report based on a study carried out in 31 districts from April 13, 2011 to May 13, 2012.
The report calls on the government to see to it that what is being taught in schools does not promote caste-based discrimination. The government should set aside quota for Dalits in community school management committees and encourage Dalit female teachers, recommends the report.
The document has recommended that schools and colleges be declared discrimination-free areas and urged authorities to take action against those discriminating others.
“Dalit children should be given free education, free school uniforms and text-books,” the report goes on to say. In higher education, especially in medical, engineering, nursing and other subjects, seats should be reserved for those from Dalit families, authors of the report have said.
Pahadi said the government should run a programme to provide nutritious food to Dalit children. “People living below the poverty line should be provided free health services,” he added.
“The state should be serious about implementing laws to provide special privileges to Dalits. Caste-based Discrimination and Untouchability (Crime and Punishment) Act should be strictly implemented.”
The report has demanded that the government draft policies for meaningful representation of Dalits in every sector and provide more powers to National Dalit Commission and National Dalit Upliftment Council.
The lawmakers have said authorities should punish those who discriminate people on the basis of their caste. The subcommittee has also sought budget for holistic development programmes targeting Dalits.