Sushma Baraili says, “In a short time, we were able to develop critical understanding on Dalit issues and learned to generate new contents to improve our writing.” She has since then produced a series of features and opinion pieces. She recalls how she couldn’t even articulate her own personal grievances as a Dalit woman, and often struggled to link them to the larger context of social injustice.
“We need to cover Dalit issues with proper analysis and go beyond the specifics and the usual conversation of untouchability and discrimination,” says Sushma, explaining how the course has helped her to think differently as a writer.
Shusma hails from Banke district in Sudurpaschim Province and narrates how the so-called ‘empowerment projects’ are focussed mostly on income-generation, forming cooperatives, school education, health, and other development initiatives. Although there are campaigns to promote human rights and raising awareness about social equality, and education programs about laws against caste discrimination, the mindset hasn’t changed much.