Thursday May 30, 2024
Thursday May 30, 2024

Dalit community engaged in preparations for local elections


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2022 Feb 09, 9:47,
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With the government announcing the date of local elections, the Dalit communities in Madhes have started election-centric debates and discussions to increase their representation. The Dalit community is now planning to field a candidate from their community and win the election.

The Dalit community has started debates and discussions at the community level on how to increase the representation of Dalits and women in the local level elections to be held on May 13. In the election-centered debate and discussion initiated by Dalit Concern Forum Nepal, the leaders of the Dalit community who participated in the discussion stressed on the need to ensure the representation of their community.

The Dalit leader suggested that reservation should be made for Dalits at the local level and that only Dalits should be allowed to be candidates in the same village and municipality for some time instead of forever. Dalit leader Bhola Paswan said that Dalits should be made mandatory candidates for the post of municipality and village head as the population of Dalit community is high in Saptari, Siraha and other districts. "Dalits make up about 22 percent of the total population of Siraha," he said.

Out of the 17 municipalities of Siraha, only in Karjanha municipality, people from Dalit community are elected mayor. Dalit leader Ram Preet Ram said, "On the one hand, the parties do not nominate the Dalit community, and even if they do, they do not win. Non-Dalits do not cooperate." He said that the Dalit community should be involved in the election preparations by organizing them.

Although the constitution mentions inclusive proportional representation on the basis of population, it is not seen in practice, said the Dalit leader. He said that the state should be pressured by boycotting the quota of Dalit women as it has created a trend of not fielding male Dalit candidates after giving reservation to Dalit women.

Prof. Dr. Vijay Mishra says that dalits should unite and exert pressure. "Discussions should be held among the dalits at the district level," he said. Raj Kumar Paswan of Dalit Concern Forum Nepal informed that the leaders of Dalit fraternal organizations of political parties are gathering in all eight districts of Madhes province to collect suggestions. He said that based on the suggestions, political parties would be pressured to increase the representation of Dalits and women at the local level.

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local elections Dalit community Dalit Concern Forum Nepal Saptari Siraha Madhes Terai representation political parties
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