The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) government plans to bring a resolution in the state assembly urging the central government to provide Scheduled Caste (SC) status to Adi Dravidars who have converted to Christianity.
The Adi Dravidars are a Dalit community found all over the state. The name Adi Dravidar, which translates to 'original inhabitants of the land', came to be used because it was felt by certain community leaders that the original name of the community, i.e., Paraiyar had negative connotations and it sounded similar to the English word 'pariah'.
This comes after the Andhra Pradesh government of YS Jagan Mohan Reddy moved a similar resolution urging the Centre to include Dalit Christians in the SC list.
The Constitution (Scheduled Castes) Order, 1950, as amended from time to time, says no person professing a religion other than Hinduism, Sikhism, and Buddhism shall be deemed to be a member of a Scheduled Caste (SC).
Earlier this month, the Supreme Court heard a batch of pleas asking for SC status to be extended to Dalits who have converted to Christianity and Islam.
The petitioners said the Constitution (Scheduled Castes) Order, 1950 is discriminatory and violative of Articles 14 (equality before law) and 15 (prohibition of discrimination on grounds of religion, race, caste, etc) of the Constitution as it discriminates against Scheduled Caste converts to religions other than Hinduism, Sikhism, and Buddhism.
The Centre in an affidavit to the Court claimed that the 1950 Constitution (Scheduled Castes) Order was legal and valid, and did not suffer from any unconstitutionality.
As you are no doubt aware, Swarajya is a media product that is directly dependent on support from its readers in the form of subscriptions. We do not have the muscle and backing of a large media conglomerate nor are we playing for the large advertisement sweep-stake.
Our business model is you and your subscription. And in challenging times like these, we need your support now more than ever.
We deliver over 10 - 15 high quality articles with expert insights and views. From 7AM in the morning to 10PM late night we operate to ensure you, the reader, get to see what is just right.
Becoming a Patron or a subscriber for as little as Rs 1200/year is the best way you can support our efforts.