Bengaluru, Sep 17, 2019 : A Narayanaswamy, senior BJP leader and Lok Sabha member from Chitradurga, was denied entry into a village in his constituency as villagers asked him to stay outside due to his Dalit identity, News18 reported.
The veteran Dalit leader had gone to Gollarahatti, a Yadava-dominated village in Pavagada taluk, to build houses for the homeless under the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) on Monday evening.
He was accompanied by the representatives from Biocon, a pharma company, and super speciality hospital Narayana Hrudayalaya. The officials had come forward to develop the village.
When the MP reached the village, some locals asked him not to enter the village saying ‘Dalits are not allowed’.
When the officials accompanying him tried to explain that he is leading a delegation to help the poor villagers, the villagers asked Narayanaswamy sit outside the village and even arranged a chair for him.
Narayanaswamy also tried to reason with them, but in vain.
After some time, a few locals requested him to enter the village but the MP refused, saying he does not want them to quarrel among themselves once he leaves.
Pained and humiliated, Narayanaswamy returned without stepping into the village. Speaking to media he said he did not want to enter the village by force with the help of police.
"I want to change their mindset. I don’t want to file a case against them. Untouchability is a reality. Change of heart is important. Laws can’t change that," he said.
The locals allegedly told him that former JDS MLA Thimmarayappa, who is also a Dalit, had never entered their village during his term.