" Democracy was
also a great narrative and not merely a monolithic kind of democratic participation."
 
 
 
 

NAND KISHORE SIDDHARTH

Nand Kishore Siddharth was born in a village named Gosainganj, near Lucknow on 17th July 1940. His mother, Ramadevi was a very simple homely woman who stayed home and looked after the family. His father, Maiku Lal, passed chauharam considered to be very respectful in those days. On clearing this examination the candidates were considered fit to be appointed teachers in primary schools. Having cleared this examination he too was appointed a primary school teacher. He was appointed thrice, but each time he was forced to resign owing the problems created by the upper caste people. He was not allowed by the savaranas to carry on his job.They objected to their children being taught by a low caste teacher and caused trouble for him.This discriminatory attitude of the upper caste community was so unrelenting that they went to the extent of threatening him of dire consequences, if he continued in this profession. Considering the gravity of such threats, Nand Kishore’s father ultimately decided to start their traditional occupation of leather work.

Nand Kishore started his primary education in Muwaiya. Unlike the other fellow Dalit writers, he did not face the brunt of caste discrimination to the extent faced by them:, but to say that he was completely untouched would be untrue. Though his primary school days were free of any kind of caste humiliation because his teacher, Durjan Prasad, being a Dalit himself, never troubled him, but in his middle school he experienced the evil aspect of the caste system.He was asked by his teachers and fellow students not to study Sanskrit, a language considered to be sacred and, therefore, a preserve of the Brahmins. However, there were no major incidents of caste violence, during his school and college days.He attrilented this to the fact that in the towns where he studied there was not so much caste violence as in the villages.In 1960, he graduated from the University of Lucknow, and in 1962 he completed his LLB.He worked as a Lawyer for three years. In 1965 he was appointed a second class officer in the Department of Finance, the Government of Uttar Pradesh, and he left his practice to join there. In the year 1997, he took voluntary retirement from his service.

From the very young age he had an inclination towards social issues concerning Dalit communities and, therefore, he never missed any chance of being a part of various processions, meetings and protest marches on these issues. All these left a deep impact on his mind and made him a part of the social revolution in a more constructive way through his writings later in his life. His poems were quite famous and used to get published in his school magazine. Apart from this, newspapers such as ‘Navjeevan’ and ‘Swatantrata Bharat’ too published his poems. Till now two of his booklets have been published, namely, ‘Maargdaata’, which is in the form of poems, and ‘Samajik Kranti ke Senani’. His two other booklets which are unpublished are ‘Samajik Kranti ki Mahila Senani’ and ‘Madaari Pasi’. His booklets have played a big role in arousing people’s consciousness and have inspired them to leave those social orthodoxies that hamper their development. His writings are not anti-Brahmanical,but are devoted to highlighting the contributions of some great Dalit personalities, who gave up their lives fighting for the cause of the society. This, he believes, is the best method of making people conscious of their rights and duties, as they will be able to draw inspiration from these personalities. Nand Kishore Siddharth is also the member of the Bodh Upasak Sangha, Lucknow. This organization is involved in the task of educating and arousing consciousness among the people of the Dalit communities. Apart from this,it also hold discussions on Dalit related issues from time to time.

His writings attract people from both Dalit and Non-Dalit communities. Apart from Uttar Pradesh his writings are very famous in Delhi as well as in Punjab.He continue to work for the growth of the Dalit literature, along with his social work for the uplift of Dalits.

 

Copyright © 2012 Govind Ballabh Pant Social Science Institute. All Rights Reserved.
A project supported by the Ford Foundation