Vijay Puli

Vijay Puli holds a Master’s degree in Social Work and has significant experience working with marginalized communities such as BIPOC, Dalits, Adivasis, people with disabilities, women and children. Presently, Vijay Puli is working as a Social Worker in Canada where he has the opportunity to work with families through providing services such as individual and family assessments, counselling, service plans, referrals and advocacy.

Prior to this, while in India, Vijay Puli worked in a community development setting with the UNDP (United Nations Development Program) as an Assistant Project Manager and Action Aid International as a Project Coordinator. In this role, Mr. Puli had an opportunity to work for the upliftment of marginalized/ oppressed communities such as Dalits, Adivasis, backward castes, people with disabilities, women and children. Vijay Puli was part of some research studies on topics such as Participatory Rural Appraisal, Women Sexual Abuse in Rural Areas, and more.

Vijay Puli mobilized Dalit communities in rural villages in India towards the eradication of the “two glass system” that was being practiced in the tea shops and hotels, where separate glasses were kept for different caste groups. He coordinated the program for rehabilitating bonded laborers from Dalit and Adivasi communities in villages as well as in Brick Kiln factories. He also conducted the temple entry initiative for the Dalit community in many villages where they were not allowed into Hindu temples. Mr. Puli also managed education centers for child labor children from Dalit and other oppressed caste communities. He initiated labor unions for inter-state migrant workers from Orissa by involving the local union groups such as CITU etc. Mr. Puli led the initiative for the first ever Dalit History Month at his workplace  in Canada in April 2021.

In addition, Vijay Puli is the founder & Executive Director of SADAN (South Asian Dalit Adivasi Network Canada), a non-profit organization in Canada that works for addressing the descent based caste discrimination and inequalities among the South Asian Community in Canada. Mr. Puli and his team advocated for the first ever historical caste equity motion in Canada in Toronto District School Board (TDSB) that was passed by the board in March 2023.

Short promotional video, 1:  How did caste shape your youth?

Short promotional video, 2: How does caste operate in Western societies?

Full interview, Part 1:

Full interview, Part 2: 

“Caste in Canada”

About the project. 

Banner image: Collage of photographs, from left to right, interview of Surjit and Manjit Bains with Dr. Anne Murphy (courtesy of Jai Birdi); the Guru Ravidas Sabha Vancouver (courtesy of Anita Lal); Kamaljit, participant in the project; portrait of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar by Raghavendra Rao Karkala, now in the collection of the University of the Fraser Valley Library (acrylic on canvas); Mohan Lal Karimpuri, author and activist; Vipasna Nanal, project participant and video interview editor.