Dalits to offer prayers at Ravidas temple site
NEW DELHI: Dalit religious leaders have decided to offer payers at the Ravidas temple site in Tughlakabad Tuesday a month after it was demolished by the authorities following a Supreme Court order.
Dalits staged a massive protest against the demolition and demanded that the temple be rebuilt at the “historic site” where it stood since 1509. According to the Sants, “Guru Ravidas visited the place in 1509 and preached there during the rule of the second Lodi ruler Emperor Sikandar Lodi, who gifted the land to the guru.” Guru Ravidas Jayanti Samaroh Samiti has claimed that it has been taking care of the Ravidas temple land for 160 years.
The prayers at the temple site on Tuesday will be led by Sant Sukhdev Waghmare. At least 250 people are expected to attend.
Thousands of Dalits from different parts of the country took to the streets to protest against the demolition of a Ravidas temple in the city. The Delhi Police arrested 96 persons, including Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad on charges of rioting and unlawful assembly.
Process of getting one crore signatures to press for the demand to rebuild the temple has also been initiated, said activist Ashok Bharti.
The Supreme Court is expected to hear the Ravidas temple issue on September 14.
Meanwhile, the activists urged the authorities to release the activists being held since August 21 demonstration.