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‘Deeply Pained’: Dalit BJP MP Denied Entry Into K’taka Settlement

A Narayanaswamy was denied entry into a settlement of the Golla community in Karnataka on Monday.

Updated
India
2 min read

A Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP from Karnataka, A Narayanaswamy, was denied entry into a settlement of the Golla community (Gollarahatti) in the state on Monday, 16 September, allegedly because he is a Dalit.

The incident took place at Pemmanahalli in Karnataka's Tumakuru district on Monday evening, when the Chitradurga MP went to Gollarahatti for a tour, accompanied by doctors as well as officials of Bengaluru's Biocon company.

The MP told The Quint that he was in the district to assess the condition of schools as well as the possibility of installing RO plants.

“During this time, I came across this village and I wanted to see the what sort of the development has taken in the village. (It was) during this time that the incident took place,” he said.

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Regarding the incident, Narayanaswamy told The Hindu, “I was deeply pained (because) I was not allowed into the Gollarahatii as I am a Dalit.”

A local named Nagaraj was quoted by ANI as saying, "We have traditions, there is history of incidents, so people said he shouldn't be allowed (sic)."

‘Failed to Bring This Village to the Mainstream’

According to The Hindu report, the MP was later allowed to enter the settlement by one group, but he did not to do so in apprehension that it would lead to a conflict within the community.

“If I wanted, I could have bulldozed my way through to the village. But then two groups had gotten into the argument over this issue and to avoid a law and order situation, I left from the place,” he told The Quint.

“Instead of filing a case against them, I want to believe that we have failed to bring this village to the mainstream. It was our responsibility to provide them homes and education. When we have not provided that, how can we punish them? But it is true that such an incident shouldn’t have happened.”
A Narayanaswam

The Gollas come under the Other Backward Classes (OBCs), while Narayanaswamy belongs to a Scheduled Caste community.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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