Gujarat turned into a focal point as thousands of Dalits gathered at Una saying they are tired of promises such as the one PM Modi made on Independence Day, in which he emphasised the importance of social harmony and his government’s commitment to upholding the rights of the weakest sections of society.
Also present at the gathering in Una was Kanhaiya Kumar the student who was infamously arrested on charges of sedition in February. A section of those present marched nearly 400 kilometres to Una from Ahmedabad, where their demonstrations began 10 days ago. They insisted their yatra or march aimed at delivering basic rights to Dalits, such as the land that was allocated but never handed over to Dalit farmers. The leaders said if that is not done in a month, they will organise larger demonstrations.
They were joined by Muslims from Una who said they wanted to express their solidarity with Dalits.
Last weekend PM Modi criticised cow vigilantes stating that most use religion as a cover for crimes that have nothing to do with protecting the cow which is held sacred by Hindus. The vigilantes chase trucks transporting cattle and raid slaughter houses.