Updated: September 23, 2021 9:27:33 pm
Former Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi on Thursday lashed out at “dharm ke thekedaar” – self-appointed guardians of faith – whom he squarely blamed for Dalits being deprived of a life of dignity.
Manjhi, whose Hindustani Awam Morcha is a part of the ruling alliance in the state, expressed anguish on Twitter, sharing a heart-wrenching news report of a Dalit couple in Karnataka being penalised after their two-year-old child inadvertently stepped into a temple.
Incidentally, Karnataka is ruled by the BJP which is also the largest partner in the ruling coalition in Bihar.
“I am giving voice to the pain that has been experienced for centuries. So far, I have been shy of expressing the anguish. Now nobody will say a word. The ‘dharm ke thekedaar’ go silent on such matters… they cannot brook Dalits entering the temples or offering their views on religious works (‘dharmik kavya’),” he tweeted.
ये जो हम कह रहें हैं,
बस सदियों का दर्द है,
गुस्से का अब-तक हमने इजहार कहां किया…
धर्म के राजनैतिक ठेकेदारों की ज़बान ऐसे मामलों पर चुप हो जाती है।
अब कोई कुछ नहीं बोलेगा,क्योंकि धर्म के ठेकेदारों के पसंद नहीं कि दलित मंदिर में जाए,दलित धर्मिक कव्यों पर टिप्पणी करे। pic.twitter.com/RMiSpQWqZ5
— Jitan Ram Manjhi (@jitanrmanjhi) September 23, 2021
His outrage came close on the heels of a barrage of insults from the BJP after he made a statement, suggesting that Lord Rama was a fictional, and not historical, figure.
He made the comment recently, reacting to demands by some BJP leaders here that Ramayana be included in the school syllabus, following a similar move by the BJP government in Madhya Pradesh.
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