Dalits seek to reclaim Hanuman temples
Uttar Pradesh's Chief Minister Yogi Aditya Nath sparked a controversy by saying that Lord Hanuman was a Dalit while campaigning in Malakheda in Alwar.
In his speech, Yogi said, Bajrang bali hamari bharatiya parampara mein ek aise devta hain jo swayam vanvaasi hai, girvasi hain, Dalit hain, vanchit hai. Yogi also said, Those who are Ram Bhakt should vote for BJP while those who believe in Ravana should vote for Congress. Several Dalit leaders and Dalit organisations started criticising Yogi on his statement.
People belonging to the Dalit community reached with posters and banners shouting slogans. Dalit Utthan Samit organised a dharna outside Dakshinmukhi Hanuman temple in Hazratganj area of Lucknow and claimed that Lord Hanuman is their God as he is Dalit and now onwards only Dalit should be allowed to perform puja and path in Hanuman temples across the country.
We will start our protest not only in Lucknow but also across the nation asking Dalit leaders and organisation to stall their claims on Hanuman Temples so that we can claim on our Dalit god, said Naresh Gautam, President of Dalit Utthan Sewa Samiti.
The opposition has taken this whole issue as a political drama of BJP. Samajwadi party is calling it a practice of divide and rule. Juhi Singh, SP Spokesperson calls it height of politics of caste and religion. She said, BJP is always known as the party that divides people on the basis of caste and religion, but this is extreme that now BJP is dividing Gods on the basis of Caste. BJP will pay its price for spreading hate in society, she adds.