The minister said petitioner Pankaj Meshram was a Buddhist.
Nagpur: Republican Party of India (RPI) leader and Union minister for social justice Ramdas Athawale — who will soon file an appeal in the Supreme Court against the order of the Nagpur bench of the Bombay high court banning the use of the term dalit in official files and in media — on Thursday said that there was nothing wrong with the said nomenclature.
“There is nothing wrong with the word. I do not think it is derogatory. All it connotes is the condition of those deprived of education, social status and justice. My party workers and supporters and we are opposed to the the high court directive banning the use of the term dalit,” Mr Athawale told reporters on Thursday.
“We will appeal the order in the apex court,” he stressed.
Mr Athawale said that the word was in use for very long and several organisations such as Dalit Panther and Dalit Sena had adopted it because no one found it objectionable. The minister said petitioner Pankaj Meshram was a Buddhist.