The 41-year-old Jignesh Mevani dons many hats: distinguished Dalit activist, outspoken lawmaker, former journalist and lawyer, to only title just a few. Usually within the headlines, Mr. Mevani was not too long ago arrested by the Assam Police that got here all the way in which from Kokrajhar to Palampur in north Gujarat over a tweet he posted criticising Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
As quickly as he was granted bail, he was rearrested in a case of misbehaving with a policewoman. The native courtroom in Assam, whereas granting him bail within the second case, has come down closely on the police for foisting the false case in opposition to him. On the time of his arrest from Gujarat, Mr. Mevani stated: “I’ll battle this. I cannot relent or bow down.”
That’s Mr. Mevani for inexperienced persons — a relentless fighter. In 2016, he hogged headlines when he spearheaded a motion in assist of the rights of the Scheduled Castes in Gujarat following the general public torture and flogging of Dalits in Una by self-proclaimed cow vigilantes for allegedly skinning a useless cow within the Saurashtra area.
As a founder member of the Una Dalit Atyachar Ladat Samiti (Committee to battle atrocities in opposition to Una Dalits) and the Rashtriya Dalit Adhikar Manch, Mr. Mevani took out a Dalit Asmita Yatra from Ahmedabad to Una, through which greater than 15,000 individuals participated. Taking a pledge to surrender their conventional caste-based occupation of eradicating cow carcasses, 1000’s of Dalits from throughout the State got here collectively and demanded justice for the Una victims.
See also MI vs KKR: “Younger Hero Will Turn out to be Superhero” – Irfan Pathan, Harbhajan Singh Imagine Tilak Varma Will Symbolize Mumbai Indians For Subsequent 10 Years
The 370-km protest march culminated on August 15, 2016, in an enormous conference in Una the place Mr. Mevani gave a fiery speech, asking the neighborhood members to unite and battle for his or her rights, a path proven by Dr. Ambedkar.
Land for Dalits
Through the marketing campaign, he demanded that each landless Dalit within the State be given 5 acres of land, which, in line with him, is rightfully theirs. Since 2015, knocking on the door of courts to protesting on the streets within the title of ‘rasta roko’ and ‘rail roko’, Mr. Mevani has pursued instances of Dalits who’ve been allotted land on paper however not given bodily possession of the identical.
To proceed his activism, Mr. Mevani stop his job as a journalist in a weekly and joined arms with the Jan Sangharsh Manch based by the late Mukul Sinha. Sinha, a human rights activist and lawyer, requested him to get a regulation diploma to be higher outfitted to battle for the rights of marginalised sections. In Gujarat, a State with round 7% Dalit inhabitants, Mr. Mevani has emerged because the chief of the Ambedkarite motion.
The success of Una protest march catapulted him onto the nationwide stage, and he quickly emerged as a robust voice of Dalits and different marginalised communities. In 2017, he introduced that he would contest the Meeting elections from Vadgam in north Gujarat, which is reserved for the SCs, as an unbiased candidate.
“Associates, I’m contesting from Vadgam-11 seat of Banaskantha district of Gujarat as an Unbiased candidate. We will battle, we will win,” he tweeted on November 27, 2017, saying his entry into electoral politics. To pave the way in which for his victory, the Opposition Congress determined to shift its sitting MLA from Vadgam, which has a sizeable inhabitants of Dalits and minorities, moreover OBCs. Mr. Mevani defeated the BJP’s Vijay Chakravarti by 19,696 votes.
See also Fantasy girls’s basketball: Prime gamers to draft on the younger Dallas Wings roster
Born to a middle-class household with each mother and father working in clerical jobs in authorities, he grew up within the Dalit-populated Meghaninagar space of Ahmedabad and studied in Gujarati-medium faculties. He later joined HK Arts school in Ahmedabad, the place he bought interested in drama and theatre, due to Saumya Joshi, a poet and playwright, who was a college member within the school.
In 2021, he joined the Congress. Earlier than becoming a member of the Congress, he had stated he had respect for its ideology and becoming a member of the social gathering “will give extra energy in combating in opposition to the BJP within the coming Meeting election and the 2024 Lok Sabha election.” Earlier than the Una agitation, Mr. Mevani had flirted with the Aam Aadmi Social gathering. He was a spokesman of the social gathering in Gujarat for a brief stint. However regardless of his political social gathering affiliation, Mr. Mevani has been constant on two fronts — his opposition to the BJP and his activism for the rights of the Dalits and different marginalised communities.