Being Untouchable

Impunity


Above: Minasi and his wife Sartabati have endured many years of attacks against their Dalit Christian community in Orissa. Here they are standing in their local church in Mukundipur village, which has been destroyed on five occasions, in 1966, 1975, 1998, 2007 and 2008.

Gajapati District, Orissa.
 

Main picture: Teenage brothers Sunil and Naveen dream that one day, they will have the finances to rebuild their smashed family home. Their father was accused of murdering a 'high' caste money-lender after a dispute over exorbitant interest rates. In furious retribution, 'high' caste men looted and burnt the homes of fifty Dalit families. Police had warned the Dalits to flee, but stood aside as mob justice took its course.  

Though acquitted of the money-lender's murder, their father was killed two years later. This provoked widespread violent protests from Dalits, which demonstrated their anger about the lack of justice.

Sonipat District, Haryana.