ICDR Applauds President Obama for Raising Dalit Rights as Inherent Human Dignity
Washington, D.C. (January 31, 2015) – International Commission for Dalit Rights’ (ICDR) President Mr. DB Sagar applauded U.S. President Obama for recognizing Dalit Rights as the ‘fundamental freedom and inherent dignity of (every) human being’, and raising the issue of curbing Caste and Gender-based discrimination and inequality in India during his January 27 speech delivered at Siri Fort in New Delhi. President and Mrs. Obama were invited by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to attend India’s Republic Day commemorations and parade, which honors the date on which the Constitution of India came into force on January 26, 1950.
During his speech addressing Indian government officials and dignitaries, Obama stated, “Together we can stand up against human trafficking and work to end the scourge of modern day slavery.” He went on to say, “It’s urgent that we begin this work right now … Development that lifts up the lives and health of our people…Trade and economic partnerships that reduce poverty and create opportunity…Leadership in the world that defends our security, advances human dignity and protects our planet…That’s what I believe that India and America can do together.”
DB Sagar stated, “We welcome the President’s influence on Indian people and Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi to grant respect and ensure the dignity of all individuals, and curb modern-day slavery.” Caste segregation is still practiced against nearly 200 million Dalits, or Scheduled Castes/Tribes, across India today.
Read full statement here.
View video of the speech below: