A dalit leader spearheading the protest against untouchability at the cremation ground is arrested.
On October 22 last, Ujjol Das, chairman of the Kesobpur branch of the Bangladesh Dalit Parishad, is arrested by Police in the first hours of the morning. Together with Ujjol also his father Kumar Das and grandfather Onil Das are arrested and sent to the thana jail. It is apparent that this sudden arrest has got to do with the protests being organised against the discrimination suffered by a Rishi person at the cremation ground. The Bangladesh Dalit Parishad is about to start a case against this discrimination and their perpetrators.
On 20-10-2011 in the village of Bhalukghar, Kesobpur upazila in the
district of Jessore, the corpse of Anondo Das, a dalit belonging to the
Rishi caste, was turned back from the cremation ground by so called high caste Hindu because of Anondo low status. The Rishi are the traditional coblers and leather workers of south west Bangladesh. Because of their so called low occupation they are to this day despised and scorned. Being turned away from the cremation ground, Anondo’s dead body was cremated by his relatives and mourners along a river bank, outside of the established encloser. The villagers protesting this act of caste discrimination brought out a procession forming a human chain in protest.