Barun Kumar, 30, belongs to other backward classes (OBC) but joined the anti-reservation movement during his college days.
“I looked up to the upper caste students and joined their group with the hope of improving my English. However, I was never accepted in the group even though I got admission through merit,” said Kumar, a law graduate from Patna.
He was a part of the gathering of students and human rights lawyers, most of them belonging to backward classes, at TISS in Chembur on Monday.
The participants highlighted the discrimination they faced in institutes in the context of Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula’s suicide in January. Organised by Human Rights Law Network (HRLN), the meeting sought to devise an action plan to prevent discrimination in colleges.
Kranti, 32, a lawyer who heads the Mumbai chapter of HRLN, alleged that some colleges in Maharashtra allot a separate division to students from scheduled castes (SC) and scheduled tribes (ST). “They isolate the students by calculating their marks in a particular way,” he said.
Vira Sathidar, a Nagpur-based activist who starred in the Oscar-nominated film ‘Court’, said the SC/ST students are deprived of basic amenities.