Dalits In U.P. Face Hunger Deaths And Suicides by S.R. Darapuri (Countercurrents, May 9, 2008)
"The main reason for this situation is the rain failure for the last five years resulting in loss of crops and wages for the agriculture labourers who are predominantly Dalits of Kol and Sahriya castes. Not only higher caste farmers but even dalit farmers are committing suicides due to crop failure and indebtedness. The agriculture labourers are dying of hunger, malnutrion and unemployment. This region has been identified with Vidharba region of Maharashtra where as many as 4,453 farmers have committed suicides during 2006. It is reported that as many 200 farmers had committed suicides and an other 250 had died of hunger deaths in Bundelkhand during the last five years. Out of this dalits' share is about 30 % among suicides and 70 % among hunger deaths. 80 % Dalits are on the verge of hunger deaths. As many as 12 dalits in Bundelkhand and 11 dalits in other districts of U.P. committed suicide and as many 25 dalits died of hunger deaths during the year 2007 only.
"In the face of this horrifying calamity the so called dalit Chief Minister Ms. Mayawati had the temerity to claim that not a single man had died neither of hunger death nor had committed suicide in U.P. She also declared that she will scrap the National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme which aims at providing 100 days' assured employment to rural labour families."
Condition of Dalits worst in UP: SC panel (Zee News, June 12, 2008)
"In a virtual snub to the Mayawati government in Uttar Pradesh, the National Commission for Scheduled Castes on Thursday said the state had the 'worst track record' across the country in terms of atrocities on Dalits.
"'Uttar Pradesh continues to be at the top in terms of the number of cases of atrocities against Dalits reported in states across the country. The latest data available with us is for 2006 when the state recorded a whopping 52,827 such cases,' chairman of the Commission Buta Singh told reporters here.
Mayawati Kumari: Untouchable and unstoppable (The Independent (UK), February 4, 2008)
"The statues, along with the portraits and images of Mayawati that stare out from hoarding boards and newspapers across UP, are just one clue as to the extraordinary cult of personality that has grown up around the 'Dalit Queen', a woman whose remarkable rise to power has seen her overcome widespread prejudice against so-called untouchables to lead India's most populous state.
"Diminutive in stature but mighty in her influence, she is currently serving her fourth stint as UP's Chief Minister. Many believe Mayawati, who courts controversy, now has her eyes fixed firmly on the position of Indian prime minister. Crucially, her party holds a simple majority in the state legislature that means she can stay in office unchallenged for a full five-year term, giving her time to project herself further on to the national stage and an opportunity to raise money to fund such a move. All of India is watching."
See anti-caste: MAYAWATI KUMARI, LEADER OF LOW-CASTE-BASED CAPITALIST PARTY, TO BE CHIEF MINISTER OF UTTAR PRADESH AGAIN (May 12, 2007)