We are a group of human rights activists and organisations that dream of a just, caring and peaceful South Asia. We came together in December 2015 to document the condition of the region’s minorities – religious, linguistic, ethnic, caste and gender, among others – hoping this would help in bettering outcomes for South Asia’s many marginalised groups. We call ourselves the South Asia Collective. We have since been able to rally other like-minded groups and platforms to our cause. Building on this initial success, we have also begun experimenting with small-scale practical support to minority groups across borders, to nurture their capacity for better outcomes for minority communities, working at local and regional levels. This coming together of like-minded groups is particularly gratifying given the otherwise political environment in the region, which militates against any serious regional effort by state parties on minority and human rights. It is then left to civil society initiatives to try to pave the way in the hope for more formal efforts, going forward. Eventually we want to see the establishment of a South Asia charter of minority and human rights, and regional and national mechanisms to enforce those.
The members of the South Asia Collective are: