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India: Online petition seeks ’Non Religious - No Caste’ category in government forms in all walks of life

22 March

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[We have reproduced the full text the below online petition here in public interest. We appeal to all readers of sacw.net to support this sterling effort]

[Text of petition]

by Venkata Ramakrishna Rao Duvvuri Hyderabad, India

Dear Friends !

Namaste...

We Humbly wants to bring these few lines to your kind notice. Our’s is an Inter caste and Inter religious marriage. We have different Caste and Religious Origins. Of course one of us believe in religion and others do not follow any religion. We have decided not to impart any caste and religious beliefs to our children. But, In our Country there is no option to claim for the people with Non Religious and No Caste practice. We are asking for one more option to claim as "Non Religious and No caste" .. Existing formats are not allowing any individual who wants to claim his/her identity outside the Religion.

We submit that We are filing the Public Interest Litigation precisely for two reasons that our elder daughter Spandana is studying in 10th Class now and going to come out of the school by March 2017. Our problem remains same, because, in the Board of Secondary Education, Telangana State SSC Examination March-2017 Online Application it is a must to fill in Religious status of the student, without which the application remains incomplete. Under the Religion column – the options given are 1.Hindu, 2.Islam, 3.Christian, 4.Sikhism, 5.Buddhism, 6.Jainism 7.Others. The “Others” option also prescribed under Religion Column only. There is no option for Non Religious Identity. At this crucial moment we were forced to fill against our will and wish in the online format where there is no such status for people like us despite our humble, repeated request to all the respondent Authorities particularly relating to school education to kindly consider our requisition and give us a provision to claim our child’s status as Non Religious and No Caste.Because this online examination application format will decide for all future purposes such as School leaving Certificate/TC and even the SSC certificate. So we filled our elder daughter online Examination Application format under protest. More over in another one month, after her completion of 10 th class we have to obtain our daughter’s School Transfer Certificate again we have to face the same problem as we faced during our younger daughter Sahaja’s admission. It is not a problem with any school but it is a problem with the state/ national policy by not giving an extra option for Non Religious and No Caste People.

Indian census also recording people of 6 Religions (Hinduism, Islam, Christianity, Buddhism, Sikhism, Jainism) and 7th Identity as " Religion not Stated" which is not a right expression for Non Religious people.. According to 2011 census the number of " Religion Not Stated "people are 28.7 lakhs. They must be categorized scientifically. Right from Birth to Death where ever needed there should be one more option i.e., Non Religious and No caste.. Right to have Religion means equally Right to Not to have Religion also. In a changing society let us respect all Identities properly. Already we are democratic in the case of 3rd gender and regional aspiration like Telangana in the recent past. Let us fight for the people who wants to be Non Religious and No caste also. Let us address and attend the emerging Identities in the society. We request one and all to stand and support a democratic demand. Actually this is not new but ignored since centuries. We have the traditions of Chaarvaakas, Lokayats, Atheists, Humanists, Radical Humanists, Socialists, Communists.. etc., It is ignored and neglected Identity. We humbly request all of you to support our cause. We submit that while saying all this We are alive to the practice of the caste inequalities and the need of Reservation Policy in our country. We are not against mentioning the caste or religious identity for utilizing or availing reservations for the deserving people.

Thanking you all.. .

Parents of the Children -

D.V. Ramakrishna Rao and S. Clarance Krupalini

Note : 1. Please share to the needy and people presently facing such problem during the admission as well as leaving school, during census recording and where ever it is needed

2. Please give us any such option available in other states of our Country

3. Mail IDs for Contact - raamki70[at]gmail.com, sclarancek[at]gmail.com

Mobile No - 9989189250

4. Our Advocate Mr. D.Suresh Kumar, Mobile No -9246533717

Date:16th March, 2017, Hyderabad

This petition will be delivered to:

Hyderabad,
Chief justice of Telangana High Court
Ministry of Law and Justice

Sign on to the above petition here

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SEE ALSO:

Meet the Hyderabad couple fighting for the right to reject religion
http://www.thenewsminute.com/article/meet-hyderabad-couple-fighting-right-reject-religion-59045