Dalits stage protest against social boycott in Lakya

Upper caste people had allegedly denied entry into temple for Dalits


Members of various organisations staging a protest outside Deputy Commissioner’s office on Wednesday against the  instance of untouchability practice that took place at Lakya recently. Dh Photo

The protesters took out a rally from old taluk office premises to DC office and handed over a memorandum to the DC. They said that some people from the so called upper castes had restricted entry of Dalits to Gauramma temple and hence these persons must be identified and deported.

They informed that such incidents had occurred even last year too when the upper caste members had abused and rebuked the Dalits in the temple but the problem was solved by negotiation at the police station on the condition that the entry of Dalits to the temple will not be prohibited. This year the Dalits went to the police before hand sensing problem.

Surprisingly, entry into the temple was denied to Dalits in front of the Police.
Protesters alleged that the villagers pelted stones at the Dalits saying they had desecrated the temple. They said that police intervened at the right time and saved them and added that the idol of goddess Gauramma was immersed into a nearby well on the same night on the grounds that the temple had become impure due to the entry of Dalits.

“A case of caste abuse has been filed by the police but nobody has been arrested so far,” said a protester. After the incident, on August 26, some miscreant had burn the TV cables etc belonging to Dalits households and on August 27, people from upper caste even declared social boycott on Dalits depriving Dalits from using shops, flour mills etc in the village, they added.

Handing over memorandum to DC R Narayanaswamy, Dalits leaders said that the social boycott on Dalits should be lifted and they should be allowed to lead a normal life in the village.

Clarification

Lakya Gram Panchayat President Kustharbi has denied the allegation of social boycott on Dalits and said that Dalits have not been denied right to go to shops and other public places.

A press release from her said that some vested interests have been creating problems to spoil peace and harmony in the village. “Dalits used to come to the temple voluntarily and nobody had ever stopped them from entering the temple. They entered the temple on August 26 too, right in front of police and nobody protested,” she said.

She further  added that the issue is related only to Lakya village and assured that the temple even today remains open for devotees from all religion, castes and sub castes to offer their prayers.

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