yah, it's been a while. Still, I'm happy 2 say that this SERIES (yeah u, read that right!) is worth the wait.Support the show
Because while people share BK16 infographics & write poems about Umar Khalid, there isn't a constructive public discussion about crime, punishment or policing in India.
Part 1 is about politicking, Prison Acts, and political prisoners; we explore legislation and the ideals of Law & Justice. Guiding us through these frameworks are Advocates Nikita Sonavane and Sanjana Meshram from the phenomenal Criminal Justice & Police Accountability Project.
The CPA Project team are quite literally creating new vocabularies of justice through their work in building (researching, advocating, teaching, writing) accountability against the criminalisation of Vimukta communities in Bhopal, M.P.
If you read none of the links in my bio for this ep, that's fine as long as you read their paper Settled Habits, New Tricks: Casteist Policing Meets Big Tech in India.
Nikita and Sanjana are so incredibly creative, razor-sharp in their analysis and also extremely eloquent to boot; during my interview with them, I felt intellectually and morally challenged, and I'm looking forward to sharing their insights with you all over the next couple of weeks.
This episode is also about cops, who I hate. They are the heavy boots of the State; they serve greed & protect property; they're nothing but the Home Minister's private army. To me, and most of us, the police mean Fear, Rage, and blood on the streets. We can all agree that impunity and deep-rooted socially-accepted corruption are why our mechanisms work the way they do (and why they mostly don't).
That still isn't the WHY - because, for that, you need to take a moral stance and a material one based on more than GK facts. Everything related to the police is actually related to ideas of safety, stability, status quo preservation, weaponised fear of the Other etc so Facts are useless without changing the context. Not to mention the oversaturation of horrid masculinist Copganda. . Caste society is filthy. It gets worse the higher up you get in socioeconomic class.
It's like the smog in Delhi. It's always there; it gets exponentially worse after Diwali; it's a self-aware inside joke. But it is actively killing us. We are losing literal years of our time, our lives. To quote journalist Vaibhav Vat, "we are seeing the simultaneous asphyxiation of both the lungs of Indian citizens & democratic institutions & process of the republic".
Are we seeing though? Both smog and caste are so hazy & hard to see clearly through. That's why I look to Ambedkar's speeches, my mother's common sense & abolitionist advice, the Black feminist thinkers who tenaciously paved such wide roads for us all, & who opened up the heavens.
Expert: Nikita Sonavane & Sanjana Meshram
The phenomenal episode art is by @kunal.png
Opening theme & additional score: @jide_oj_
Production: @cartel.contra & @sansfuccs
Carceral Casteism has two parts and 2 choose-your-own-adventure Endings that will release staggered over the next few weeksThis project is meant for Learning & Feeling but not for ease or comfort.