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Valmiki caste

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This article is about the Indian caste community. It is not to be confused with Balmiki sect.

The Valmiki (also Balmiki) is a dalit community of India. They have historically faced exclusion and oppression in Indian society, and are frequently affected by anti-Dalit violence and repression by members of other castes.[1]

Following the example of B. R. Ambedkar, the Valmiki have turned away from Hinduism in order to avoid the persecution associated with Hindu caste practices.[2] Some Valmikis claim that they descend from the author Valmiki who is sometimes credited with having written the Ramayana, although others claim that the currently known version of Ramayana is a distortion of the original work made by Brahmins.[3]

According to the Indian Census of 2001, the Valmikis formed 11.2 per cent of the Scheduled Caste population in Punjab[4] and were the second-most populous Scheduled Caste in Delhi, where they were recorded as "Chuhra (Balmiki)".[5] In Punjab, Chuhras who follow Hinduism are known as Valmikis.[6]

The 2011 Census of India for Uttar Pradesh showed the Balmiki population, which was classified as a Scheduled Caste, as 1,319,241.[7]

In the UK, the Council of Valmiki Sabhas UK claims to represent the Valmiki.[3][8]

See also

References

  1. ^ Narender Kumar, Manoj Rai. 2006. Dalit Leadership in Panchayats: A Comparative Study of Four States. Rawat Publications
  2. ^ Wilfred, Felix (2007). Dalit Empowerment. ISPCK. p. 133. ISBN 978-81-7214-994-9. 
  3. ^ a b Stephen Jacobs. 2010. Hinduism Today: An Introduction. A&C Black, Jun 24, 2011
  4. ^ "Punjab: Data Highlights: The Scheduled Castes" (PDF). Census I. 2001. Retrieved 2015-01-05. 
  5. ^ "Delhi: Data Highlights: The Scheduled Castes" (PDF). Census India. 2001. p. 1. Retrieved 2015-01-05. 
  6. ^ Leslie, J.(2003) Authority and Meaning in Indian Religions: Hinduism and the Case of Valmiki. Ashgate publishing. ISBN 0754634302
  7. ^ "A-10 Individual Scheduled Caste Primary Census Abstract Data and its Appendix - Uttar Pradesh". Registrar General & Census Commissioner, India. Retrieved 2017-02-04. 
  8. ^ "Memorandum submitted by Central Valmiki Sabha International (UK)". United Kingdom Parliament. 12 November 2009. Retrieved 19 May 2015.