Name of the project :
Strengthening Dalits Human rights Movement to Recognition and Establishment on the human rights at Bangladesh. Rational and background :
Bangladesh has a population of 150 million people and it is one of the least developed countries in the world. There is an estimated 10 million Dalits living in 64 districts. Most Dalits in Bangladesh are descendants of immigrants from South India. In the 1830s, Dalits were brought to Bangladesh by the British colonial regime to provide menial services for them. Most Dalits are Hindus and some are Christians, and they mainly speak Hindhi, Telegu, Urdhu and Bangla. Caste-based discrimination in Bangladesh includes practices of untouchability imposed by the dominant caste of both Hindu and Muslims communities, such as denial of access to upper caste/Muslim houses, temples, hairdressers, and restaurants. Dalits face discrimination in employment, housing, education, and access to basic services. The social exclusion of Dalits is manifested in the physical structure of the villages throughout the country. Social and economic interactions of Dalits are mainly restricted by religion, caste and occupation. Dalits in Bangladesh are referred to professions, which are considered impure such as sweeping, sewerage cleaning, tea garden laboring, burring of dead bodies, processing of mastered oil, gardening, shoe and leather work, drum beating, washing etc. Horijon, Sweepers Rishi/cobblers, Jaladas, Nomoshudra, Dhopa, Bormon, Bagdi, Kayputro, Kornidas, Malo, Maimol, Bahera, Rajbongshi communities are known as dalits. They have no access in safe drinking water, sanitation, social justice, standing committee of local governments, political inclusion, Jobs and alternative income option due to belonging in out/low caste. Professor Majbah Kamam, Department of History, Dhaka University presented research papers in the program titles Dalits Poverty profile organized by MJF (Daily Star, 19 November 2008). He has shown of socio-economic problems and Poverty profile of the Dalits in Bangladesh. More than 80% of Dalits experience discrimination in admission to schools. Dalits parents are actively discouraged by teachers from sending their children. Dalit students are teased by teachers and non- Dalit students. There is a massive economic inequality within the social groups. The wage rate is also determined by caste-based economic discrimination in rural areas. Exclusion of employment in any work or selectively in some types of works in agricultural operation or household work inside house leads to lower level of employment as compared with ‘higher caste’ workers. The PRSP has no indication about dalit people. In the same way the national budget made every year does not specify any allocation for them. Dalits are often forced to work for non-Dalits without being paid because they, at times, are dependent on their help. A vast majority of Dalits experience discrimination when trying to get a loan from a bank or a money lender. Dalits are often kept out of politics and decision making. They often find it difficult to elect their own leaders and vote in elections where they are commonly threatened with violence to vote against their will or bribed to vote for a particular candidate. The Dalit people also think that they are born to serve and respect the high ups and other non –dalit people. This is due to socialization processes. There is lack of self-esteem and self-confidence among them. The densely populated and congested housing situation is a desperate sign of the inadequate and unhealthy living conditions. Furthermore, evictions and shifting of housing by the City Corporation, often as a result of land grabbing, are commonly practiced, and leave Dalits
without homes. Women are more sufferers than males within the Dalit community. As most of the Dalit community is systematically integrated in the Hindu caste structure, their social and economic status is much lower to that of males. Likewise, the health and nutritional status of Dalit women is pathetic. The political participation of Dalit women at the word and union council level is zero. Women have not sufficient education as they are qualified to do any job. Goal of the project :
To contribute to decreased the racial/caste based discrimination by ensuring human rights of social excluded dalits peoples in Bangladesh. Objectives:
Promoting the human rights of the dalits peoples through formation, strengthening and train up the dalits right based institution in Bangladesh at coastal region by end of the project period” Major activity: 1:1, Facilitate Workshop at district & Upazilla level to formation dalits councils.
1.2, Hold half-yearly coordination meetings with Dalit Councilors at divisional level to execute plan and review.
1.3, Fact, Findings and database on the HR violence of Dalits. 1.4, Media campaign to highlight the sufferings of dalit people and to establish their
rights to live as human beings.
1.5, Training on Leadership, organization development,
Advocacy and Human rights for dalit councilors. 1.6, Cross Learning Visit in Abroad. 2.1. Mass awareness campaign.
2.2, Developed IEC Materials,
2.3, video documentary film Show.
2.5, Legal aid support
2.6, Advocacy Meeting with service providers.
2.7, Urgent Movement to protest violence against dalits. 3.1, Training support on planning, report writing, financial management and documentation, project management.
3.2, Training on M&E, Advocacy, Negotiation, Human rights & Mobilization, PIP and Organization Development for project personal. 6. Outcome of the program:
• Strengthened dalits rights based organization and have expand advocacy initiatives.
• Increased awareness and accessibility in social justice, private and public resources & services of dalits and sensitized to mainstreaming.
• The project personal have well skilled to smooth run the project. 7. Target population: Target groups; Target groups of proposed action are Project implementing staff, Upazilla & Districts Service Providers (Govt. & Non govt.) institution, Dalits Council 26 including 15 upazilla council, 10 district council and 1 central council, Law enforcing society, Local elected body, 37 number of parliament at khulna division, Upazilla & District administration, Social elite, School management committee, Teachers, Advocate etc. Total number of Target groups 10,000.
• Final beneficiaries: The final beneficiaries of the proposed action will be social excluded dalits community like tanners, sewage and garbage workers, sweepers, cobblers, barbers, fishermen, farmers or farm labourers of 1 Division of Bangladesh. Total number of final beneficiaries 25,000 (thirty five thousands) families of the proposed action area. Geographical coverage:
Name Of District: Shylet, Sunamganj, Moulovibazar, Hobiganj