All India Secular Forum extends solidarity with the Aazadi Kooch, a Pad Yatra organised by the Una Dalit Atyachar Ladat Samiti which started on 5th August 2016 and goes on till 15th August 2016. The yatra began in Ahmedabad on the 5th and is expected to complete 400 kms when it reaches Una on the 15th.


August 15th being Independence Day, this assertion of Dalit Bahujan communities for their rights symbolizes their struggle for a truly independent India, free from the shackles of caste and Brahminical hegemony.


The Aazadi Kooch has been organised to condemn the heinous atrocities and the unscrupulous violence that has been meted out against Dalit Bahujan communities, aiming to consolidate the demands of the communities in wake of the protests that have been staged all across Gujarat. The protests began in the aftermath of the flogging of four Dalit youth in Una district of Gujarat by a mob of gau-rakshaks who accused them of killing a cow for the purpose of skinning it. The various forms in which the protest took place include suicide attempts by members of the community, dumping of animal carcasses outside a district official’s office and violent street mobilization across Gujarat. There has also been a huge uproar from people all over the country.


The Demands put forward by Azadi Kooch are:


1) Una victims should get justice, the culprit should be booked under PASA (Prevention of Anti-Social Activity) 1985 and police officials involved should also booked under IPC.

2) A call to Dalit Bahujan communities to boycott all caste based work of skinning of dead animals.

3) Allocate 5 acre land to those who have stopped practicing skinning of dead animals and provide land to the landless Dalits, Adivasi and OBC.

4) Justice should be given to the Thangad dalit families who have been affected by the Thangadh Dalit Hatyakand on September 22-23 2012. Charge sheets should file against the police officials involved.

5) State has to make and implement a reservation plan.

6) The people retorting to violence and extortion in the name of “Gau Raksha” should be severely penalized.

7) District level special fast track court to address the atrocities cases, as promised under the SC/ST special provisions Act.

8) Take back the cases filed on Dalit andolankari during the andolan.

9) Those that died during andolan must be compensated.

10) SC/ST sub plan budget should be utilized for the development of SC and ST communities.

We stand in solidarity with all of the above demands.


This yatra in its entirety aims at bringing justice to the Una victims and to all victims of atrocities against Dalits. We extend unequivocal solidarity to Aazadi Kooch and the larger cause of fighting against Brahminical forces which have gained momentum in recent times. Violence in all forms has to be retaliated against and weeded out for the dream of a society that ensures social justice to be realized.


More power to the movement!

In solidarity, now and forever.

Jai Bhim!

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