Kastittomien asema on nostettava tietoisuuteen ihmisoikeusloukkauksena siinä missä apartheidkinArtikkeli

Eija-Riitta Korhola tapasi Dalit-delegaation Euroopan parlamentissa

Arvioiden mukaan 250 miljoona ihmistä mm. Intiassa, Nepalissa, Bangladeshissä ja Sri Lankassa kuuluvat kastittomiin, joita syrjitään syntyperäänsä vuoksi yhä systemaattisesti ja joilta puuttuvat perusoikeudet. Kastilaitos on ainutlaatuinen apartheid-järjestelmä, sillä missään muualla ei ole kehitetty yhtä systemaattista, yhtä julmaa ja yhtä sortavaa yhteiskunnallista instituutiota. Kyseessä on laillistettu apartheid.

Joukko daliteja eli kastittomia mm. Intiasta ja Sri Lankasta kävi syyskuun lopussa parlamentissa tapaamassa Eija-Riitta Korholaa Ryhmän tavoitteena on nostaa dalitien kokemat ongelmat ja ihmisoikeusloukkaukset laajempaan kansainväliseen tietoisuuteen siinä missä apartheidkin.

Korhola ehdottaa, että YK nimittäisi erityisen dalit-raportöörin syventymään dalitien ongelmiin ja nostamaan niitä kansainväliseen tietoisuuteen.
Kastittomuus ei ole sillä tavoin näkyvää kuin mustien erottuminen muusta väestöstä. Kysymys on kuitenkin samanlaisesta syrjinnästä. Kaupungeissa ei voi sanoa ulkonäön perusteella, kuka on bramiini ja kuka kastiton. Kylissä erot ovat näkyvämpiä, sillä kaikkien kastitaustat ovat kyläläisille tuttuja.
Kastittomia daliteja pidetään synnynnäisesti ja parantumattomasti alempiarvoisina, saastaisina. Enää dalitien korviin ei kaadeta sulaa lyijyä, etteivät he kuulisi pyhiä tekstejä, eikä kieltä lävistetä naulalla, ettei heidän äänensä likaisi pyhiä rukouksia. Eikä heidän tarvitse lakaista jälkiään ja asua pimeässä, etteivät heidän jalanjälkensä tai varjonsakaan sattuisi paremman ihmisen tielle.

Silti lukuisat ongelmat varjostavat kastittomien elämää. Heidän opiskelumahdollisuuksiaan ja työpaikkojaan rajoitetaan, jos kastittomuus tulee ilmi. Nykyäänkin kastittomat asuvat maaseudulla erillisissä dalit-kylissään. Heillä ei ole menemistä kastihindun kotiin, kaivolle eikä temppeliin. Yhteinen ateriointi on ehdoton tabu, usein jopa yliopistotasolla, huippukoulutettujenkin ihmisten kesken, jos toinen on "likainen dalit".

Kastittomien oikeuksien loukkaukset ovat edelleenkin lähes jokapäiväisiä ilmiöitä eri puolilla Intiaa. Kylissä yläkastiset miehet katsovat joskus oikeudekseen raiskata kastittomia naisia. Vaaleissa kastittomien äänestämistä on kontrolloitu joillain alueilla yläkastisten toimesta. Osa kastittomista ei päässyt äänestämään lainkaan. Osa pääsi äänestämään, mutta kun he äänestivät yläkastisten mielestä vääriä ehdokkaita, he kostivat tämän polttamalla kastittomien kodit maan tasalle.

Intian vuodesta 1998 vallassa ollut äärihindulainen BJP-puolue ei ole sekään dalitien tilannetta parantanut, päinvastoin. BJP:n mukaan arjalainen hindulaisuus on Intian ainoa oikea uskonto ja kastit ilmentävät ikuista järjestystä. Muslimit ja kristityt ovat tunkeilijoita. Siksi dalititkaan eivät saisi vaihtaa uskontoa. Uutistoimistot ovat raportoineet kristittyjen vaikeuksista Intiassa ja pakkokäännytyksistä hindulaisuuteen.

Dalitit ovat etsineet ulospääsyä kohtalostaan kääntymällä pois hindulaisuudesta. Suurin osa Intian kristityistä, muslimeista ja buddhalaisista onkin daliteja.

Viime aikoina kristittyjen ja muslimien vainoaminen Intiassa on taas yleistynyt. Kirkkoja ja moskeijoja on poltettu, poliiseja lähetetty kuulustelemaan niitä, jotka aikovat kääntyä kristityiksi. Intian perinteisesti uskonnollisesti suvaitsevainen ilmapiiri on muuttunut vaarallisesti.

Kastilaitoksen juuret ovat historian alkuhämärissä ja dalitien vieläkin kauempana. Ilmeisesti dalitit polveutuvat Indusjoen laakson sivilisaatiosta. He olivat maanviljelijöitä ja asuivat hyvin järjestyneissä kaupungeissa. Pohjoisesta tulleet arjalaiset tuhosivat Indusjoen korkeakulttuurin ja loivat uudet valtasuhteet, jotka vahvistettiin sanskritinkielisissä pyhissä teksteissä.

Yhteiskunnan ylimmän kerroksen, varnan eli värin, muodostivat papit eli bramiinit, toisen ksatriat eli sotilaat ja kolmannen vaishiat eli kauppiaat ja maanviljelijät. Neljänteen varnaan, sudriin, jäivät palvelijat. – Nämä neljä varnaa olivat perusta, jolle sittemmin koko monituhantiseksi, jättiläismäiseksi portaikoksi tai lokerikoksi paisunut kastihierarkia on rakentunut.

Varnojen ja tavallaan koko hindulaisuuden ja inhimillisen olemassaolon ulkopuolelle jäivät synnynnäisesti saastaisiksi määritellyt alkuperäiset asukkaat, koskettamattomat eli kastittomat sekä asemaltaan yhtä olemattomat heimokansalaiset.
Pyhien Veda-kirjojen mukaan varnat (ns. pääkastit) syntyivät alunperin, kun jumalat aikojen alussa uhrasivat alkuihmisen, Purusan. "Kosmisen miehen suusta syntyi pappien kasti, hänen käsivarsistaan syntyivät ruhtinaalliset soturit, hänen reisistään maanviljelijät ja jaloistaan palvelijat". Kastittomat jäivät tämän pyhän jaon ulkopuolelle. Heidät tuomittiin epäihmisiksi, joiden kuului huolehtia yhteisön raskaimmista ja likaisimmista töistä. Monimutkaiset rituaaliset säännöt alistivat ja erottivat heidät muista ihmisistä.
Kastittomien aktivistien mielestä hindulaisuutta ja kastilaitosta ei voi erottaa toisistaan. Kastisorrosta päästään eroon vain vapautumalla hindulaisuudesta. He vaativat Durbanissa pidetyssä kansainvälisessä rasismikonfererenssissa, että kastisorto on rinnastettava systemaattiseen rasismiin.
Kastittomat kutsuvat yhä useammin itseään daliteiksi. Termi juontaa alkunsa sanskritinkielisestä sanasta 'dal', joka tarkoittaa sorrettua tai maahanpoljettua. Dalitien esikuvanaan pitämä B.R. Ambedkar oli Intian ensimmäinen oikeusministeri. Kylissä kastittomien majojen seinillä näkee kaikkialla Ambedkarin rintakuvia. Kukkapunoksin koristeltu kuva ripustetaan usein pyhien kuvien rinnalle. Kastiton Ambedkar on dalitien mielestä ehdottomasti suurempi sankari kuin yläkastinen Mahatma Gandhi.
Kastin poliittinen merkitys näkyi jo Intian ensimmäisissä valtiollisissa vaaleissa ja siitä lähtien kastin ja politiikan väliset kytkennät ovat vain vahvistuneet. Nykyisin vaikutusvaltaiset kastit toimivat periaatteessa samanlaisina painostusryhminä kuin ammattiliitot tai etujärjestöt läntisissä teollisuusmaissa.

Lähteenä käytetty
Katri Simonen, Maailman Sivu ry
Tapio Tamminen, Ihmisoikeusliitto

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