New avenues: Dashrath Singh arranges his godown at his house in Badarpur

It was a mass lunch thrown by upper-caste Marathas and the nine-year-old was seated along with his mother in a corner of the temple where Dalits of the village ate. “We were segregated from the upper-caste Hindus, which was very humiliating. Even as a child, I felt insulted and would cry each time my parents would talk of visiting the village. I didn’t return after that,’’ he says.

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• Plan panel mulls ways to spur Dalit capitalism

The government has begun discussions with Dalit entrepreneurs on what can be done to promote business ventures set up by members of their community.

As a part of its discussions with various groups before it finalizes the 12th Plan for 2012-17, the Planning Commission has sought suggestions from the Dalit Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Dicci), a business group, on what can be done to spur Dalit capitalism, how these business ventures can be funded, and how Dalit voices can be heard while charting out policies.

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