Dalits still face untouchability in this Karnataka village
MYSURU: In spite of various laws and programmes to eradicate untouchability, people in some villages still follow it. In Hugyam village of Chamarajanagar district, Dalits are banned from entering temples and cannot get a haircut in the local barbershop. Hugyam is 38km from Hanur taluk near the Tamil Nadu border.
While many residents speak Tamil, most are Kurubas and there are Telugu Shettars, Bhovis and Dalits in considerable numbers with a small percentage from the Lingayat community. Though the village has backward and Dalit communities, the dominant backwards have oppressed Dalits for several decades. Dalits can’t enter the Eludandu Mariyamma and Kashi Vishwanatha Temples.
They’re banned from entering hotels and made to sit outside while food or tea is served outside. Dalits have to bring 7/25/2019 Dalits still face untouchability in this Karnataka village their own plates and cups. They have to go to neighbouring villages like Hanur, Ramapura, Martalli and Koudalli which were a few kilometres away for a haircut.
Dalits are also not allowed to use the wells — there are separate wells and water tanks for Dalits and other communities. Dalit leader Muniyappa said untouchalibility has been there for several decades. “Dalits are afraid to raise their voice as they do daily wage work in fields or houses of people of other communities and could lose their jobs,” he said. Though Dalits had never protested, the district administration held meetings with both communities. “There have been four or five meetings with villagers from all communities to stop untouchability.
The dominant community agree but later continue with it anyway,” an officer said. Deputy commissioner BB Cauvery directed the authorities to visit the village and warn people of stringent action. Chamarajanagar SP HD Anand Kumar said, “We’ve taken precautions and held meetings in the village to stop it. But they’ve failed to follow our advice. We’ll take stringent action against people who continue with this,” he said.
Courtesy : TNN