With tensions between two communities still simmering, a group of Dalits filed a police complaint against caste-Hindus for not being allowed to perform a ritual during the Aadi festival at the Badrakaliamman temple in Pazhankallimedu in Nagapattinam.
A case has been filed against a group of 11 caste-Hindus of the village under the Schedule Caste and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act for denying Dalits the right to host mandagapadi (sponsoring a day’s event) the annual festival of the Sri Badrakaliamman temple for a day, say media reports.
The Hindu reports,
In a petition lodged with the Vettaikaraniruppu police, M. Ramani, said that Dalit residents of Pazhag Kallimedu had sought the right to host mandagapadi during the Aadi festival of the temple.
Peace talks were held on July 30. However, caste Hindus refused to entertain their demand. Hence, action should be taken against A. Subramanian and 10 others, he said. Police sources said no FIR has been filed till Saturday evening.
Non-Dalits, who attended the meeting convened by the district administration, denied dalits the right to host a ritual at the temple, in front of the district collector, state minister and an official from Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department, according to TOI.
Meanwhile, A Sivasubramanian, a representative of the non-dalit community, said that he met collector S Palanisamy and had appealed to him to do the needful to conduct the main festival on August 12, which usually falls on the final Friday of the Tamil month Aadi, say reports.
Miffed at their demands not being met, Dalits had earlier threatened to convert to Islam. Tamil Nadu Tauheed Jamat and Hindu Makkal Katchi launched barbs against each other. While the Jamaat says they never forced anyone to convert, Hindu Munnani leaders said only at the instigation of the Jamaat, Dalits issued the threat.