AMARAVATI: A YSRCP delegation comprising Government Advisor (Social Justice) Jupudi Prabhakar Rao, MLA Merugu Nagarjuna, MLC Dokka Manikya Vara Prasad, and others met National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) Vice Chairman, Arun Halder and submitted the government’s policy of providing social justice, safety for the Scheduled Castes and other weaker sections of the society. They enumerated the various steps taken by the State Government in regard to the murder of an engineering student in Guntur recently.
YSRCP pursuing a pro-Dalit policy
The YSRC Party has been pursuing a pro-Dalit policy ever since its inception and after coming to power in Andhra Pradesh in 2019 it has been vigorously working for the upliftment and safety of Dalits. The safety of women and Dalits is a priority for the government led by Chief Minister, YS Jagan Mohan Reddy. This reflects in the fact that the Home Minister of the State is a Dalit and a woman (P Puspha Sreevani.
The Chief Minister has been consistently governing the State through various welfare schemes and bringing in stringent laws to protect Dalits and women from atrocities.
How the AP Govt responded in the Guntur B.Tech student case
The unfortunate incident that took place in Guntur, in which a B. Tech student was done to death, the police immediately swung into action and within hours, had brought to book the person responsible for the incident in a quick manner. In the case of the Guntur incident, the victim’s mother herself has acknowledged the sincerity, swiftness, and seriousness of the State Government in dealing with the case.
The Government has been a strong advocate of preventing crime against women and Dalits by developing various Apps, providing a safety network for them, and to mete out expeditious justice. The Government has also brought in Disha legislation, which needs to be approved by the Centre, which has provisions for time-bound trial and punishment to the guilty.
Opposition trying to divert attention before welfare scheme launch
Whenever the State undertakes a welfare programme, either on the scheduled day or on the previous day, the Opposition rakes up an issue to divert the attention in a bid to blunt the prominence of the government event and this has become a pattern.
The situation of Dalit protection during the previous government was in contrast. There was no justice done on the perpetrators of crime and often the ruling class was either involved or encouraged or took sides when such atrocities took place.
Chandrababu Naidu tops the list for encroaching Dalit lands
The pages of State history are littered with unsavoury incidents whenever TDP was in power and Chandrababu Naidu tops the list in the country for encroaching Dalit lands.
The head of the previous government had openly said that no one would want to be born as a Scheduled Caste while our Chief Minister is the one who often quotes the famous saying that if “goodness is Dalit, I would want to be a Dalit”.
Action should be taken if social exclusion or untouchability is practiced by the ruling class. But that is not the case in YS Jagan Mohan Reddy’s governance and it is the Opposition that has been practicing such a line.
Two issues merit a mention here:
1) When the State Government wanted to distribute house sites to SC, ST, BC and Minorities, it was the Opposition that moved the Court and stalled the distribution of 54,000 houses to weaker sections in Amaravati, saying that this would create demographic imbalance.
2) When the State Government wanted to start English as the medium of instruction in government schools to shape a better future of the weaker sections, who form the majority in state-run schools, the Opposition stalled it using all the avenues.
The YS Jagan Mohan Reddy government has provided 1.3 lakh jobs immediately after assuming office and provided reservations even in outsourcing jobs. In just 26 months of his governance the Government has transferred to Dalits bank accounts Rs 17,014.24 crores under DBT (Direct Benefit Transfer) and Rs 7,153 crores under non-DBT aggregating to Rs 24,169 crores giving no scope for bias pilferage and corruption.
During the five-year term of the previous TDP government, a meager Rs 33,625 crores was spent on SC Sub-plan while the State government has spent Rs 32, 926 crores under the same head in just 25 months which shows the stark contrast.
YS Jagan government committed to social justice
The YS Jagan Mohan Reddy government is committed for social justice and it can be seen in the composition of the State cabinet where 60 percent are from the weaker sections, 11 of the 15 MLC posts filled up were also from SC, ST,BC and Minorities.
The State has taken up the distribution of 30 lakh house site pattas and majority of the beneficiaries belong to weaker sections, who also form 83 percent of the job holders in Village Secretariats which is a revolutionary step taken up by the YS Jagan Mohan Reddy government to decentralize governance.
Summing up, we are of the strong view that the YS Jagan Mohan Reddy's government has been the harbinger of Dalit upliftment along with other weaker sections while the previous TDP was time again found wanting in doing justice to Dalits.