December 3, 2023

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California takes a step forward in passing caste-based discrimination invoice

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A invoice aiming to curtail caste-based discrimination, introduced within the US state of California has cleared its first legislative hurdle. The Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday voted in favour of the laws setting it up for the subsequent committee to guage it on different benchmarks. 

The invoice was introduced in final month by Senator Aisha Wahab – the primary Muslim and Afghan American elected to the state legislature. After the committee’s approval, Wahab stated she had acquired dying threats after proposing the laws. 

“We’ve hit a nerve and uncovered a type of discrimination many by no means even knew existed. Caste is an invisible shackle positioned on folks at delivery. These of us not raised in that system can’t presumably perceive what it does to at least one’s psyche, the inter-generational trauma it causes,” stated Wahab who represents the Hayward district in northern California. 

Earlier, Wahab informed BBC that she herself didn’t expertise caste discrimination however was conscious of the social evil due to the world she grew up in.

“I’ve had buddies inform me that their mother and father immigrated to this nation as a result of they belong to totally different castes and [their] households weren’t accepting of that,” Wahab was quoted as saying by the BBC.

The US lawmakers are of the view that caste-based discrimination has proliferated within the nation as properly with even huge tech firms going through the issue. 

Nonetheless, not everybody appears to agree with the laws. Rakhi Israni, an legal professional and California resident, who testified earlier than the committee said that invoice was ‘unconstitutional’ in its construction. 

“If this invoice is adopted, caste would be the solely discrimination legislation class that isn’t facially impartial/ Everybody has a race. Everybody has a color. Everybody has an age. Not everybody has a caste. This invoice is facially discriminatory,” she informed the committee. 

In keeping with an AP report, in the course of the course of listening to in entrance of the committee, about 220 folks stated they help the invoice whereas 420 stated they oppose it. 

Previous to the invoice in California, Seattle grew to become the primary metropolis within the US to outlaw caste discrimination. In February, the town council voted so as to add caste to the anti-discrimination legal guidelines. 

If the invoice is permitted, California will turn out to be the primary US state to make caste discrimination unlawful by including it as a protected class within the state’s anti-discrimination legal guidelines.

(With inputs from companies)

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