Cover Story

Dalit defiance

Print edition : February 02, 2018

Jignesh Mevani, Radhika Vemula and other Dalit activists at the Elgar Parishad on December 31, 2017, held at Pune's Shaniwarwada fort. The venue was chosen specifically for its historical context and also the name of the conference, Elgar, means battle cry. Dalits wanted to send out a strong message of their unity and their political resurgence. Photo: Mandar Tannu

The Bhima Koregaon Ranstambh (victory pillar), which stands as a symbol of Dalit victory over centuries of caste repression by the Peshwas. On January 1 every year, the place comes alive as a pilgrimage centre of sorts. Photo: By Special Arrangement

Dalit groups protesting at Thane railway station during the Maharashtra bandh on January 3 following the violence in Bhima Koregaon. Photo: PTI

The Bhima Koregaon violence and the spirited response to it from Dalits bring into focus the churning in their communities and their growing resistance to social and economic discrimination in an atmosphere of Hindutva dominance.

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