SC declines plea against advisory on use of 'Dalit'

The Supreme Court on Monday declined to entertain a plea against a government order issued on August 7, 2018, advising the media to refrain from using the term 'Dalit' for the members of the Scheduled Castes.

The Supreme Court on Monday declined to entertain a plea against a government order issued on August 7, 2018, advising the media to refrain from using the term 'Dalit' for the members of the Scheduled Castes.

“At this stage, we are not inclined to consider the issue. But it is open for the petitioner to approach the authorities against the order,” a bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Sanjiv Khanna said.

Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for petitioner V A Ramesh Nathan and others, submitted that it was a question of identity. “How can the government issue such a direction,” he asked.

The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting had on August 7, 2018, issued an advisory to all private satellite channels for refraining from using the nomenclature of 'Dalit' against the members of the Scheduled Castes.

The advisory had come in compliance to a Bombay High Court's order of June 6, 2018, passed on a PIL by Pankaj Meshram stating the media may be asked to refrain from using the word.

The high court had noted the Ministry of Social Justice had issued a letter on March 15, 2018, requesting all state and Union Territory that for all official transactions, matters, dealings and certificates etc, the constitutional term 'Scheduled Caste' in English and its appropriate translation should be used for denoting the persons from the 'Scheduled Caste' notified by the Presidential Order issued under Article 341 of the Constitution.

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SC declines plea against advisory on use of 'Dalit'

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