India’s Supreme Court to Consider Ending Decades of Discrimination Against Low Caste Christians

(International Christian Concern) On Wednesday, January 8, the Supreme Court of India agreed to examine a petition that called for Dalit and other low caste Christians to receive the same government benefits and protection given to their Hindu, Buddhist, and Sikh counterparts.

According to a 1950 executive order, Muslims and Christians from low caste backgrounds are unable to receive government benefits and protections given to low caste individuals from Hindu, Buddhist, and Sikh backgrounds. This is despite the fact that the vast majority of these individuals endure the same caste-based discrimination, regardless of their religious identity.

The petition was filed by the National Council of Dalit Christians (NCDC) and called for all scheduled caste benefits and protections to be made “religion neutral.” Advocates Franklin Caesar Thomas and S. Gowthaman, representing NCDC, said, “[a] change in religion does not change social exclusion. Caste hierarchy continues to hold fort within Christianity even though the religion forbids it.”

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