Tamil Nadu

Tamilisai meets Dalits, caste Hindus over temple row

Bharatiya Janata Party State president Tamilisai Soundarrajan interacted with Dalits and caste Hindus (Pillaimars) of Pazhag Kallimedu village separately on Monday.

The talks initiated by the State government had failed and the District Collector banned the Aadi festival at Sri Badrakaliamman Temple in the village after the Dalits threatened to embrace Islam if they were not allowed the exercise the right to host (sponsoring a day’s event) at the temple.

Accompanied by district-level party functionaries on Monday, Ms. Tamilsai first met the Dalits who had assembled in a community hall in the village.

During the interaction, the Dalits made it clear that they were only demanding their right to host mandagapadi as part of the annual festival. Their rights had been denied for a few years by caste Hindus, a member of the Dalit community told her.

The BJP leader also met Pillaimars who informed her that they were only following the traditional practice.

Ms. Tamilisai, who dined at the house of a Dalit, said she had put forth the position of the Dalits to caste Hindus during her meeting with them.

“I told the Pillaimars to be broadminded. Denying Dalits the right to host mandagapadi would only portray them as anti-Dalit,” Ms. Tamilisai said.

“After giving a patient hearing, they told me that they will think about it,” she said.

Tamilisai says Pillaimars have agreed to consider her request to allow Dalits to conduct temple ritual

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Printable version | Jan 17, 2022 7:52:38 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/Tamilisai-meets-Dalits-caste-Hindus-over-temple-row/article14547139.ece

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