Let’s turn back the clock to a century ago. We’re in 1923 and the Bombay Legislative Council has just passed a resolution enabling Dalits to access public places like wells and water tanks. Four years later in 1927, however, Savarnas continued to prevent Dalits from accessing drinking water. On 20 March that year, Babasaheb Ambedkar led a public demonstration where Dalits collectively drank water from a public tank in Maharashtra’s Mahad district. While these were landmark acts, Savarnas continue to prevent Dalits, and particularly Dalit women, from accessing drinking water. We’ll learn more about this, and the important shifts brought under the colonial, post-colonial, and liberalisation periods in India.
Deepa Joshi joins us to discuss her work on access to water. Dr Joshi is with the International Water Management Institutes and Research Program on Water, and Ecosystem where she is the Gender, Youth, and Inclusion Lead. We’ll discuss her EPW article “Caste, Gender and the Rhetoric of Reform in India's Drinking Water Sector.
Audio courtesy: The last ones by Jahzzar [CC BY-SA 3.0].