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Caste discrimination still exists in some minds: Minister Radhakrishnan

Caste discrimination still exists in some minds: Minister Radhakrishnan

Thiruvananthapuram: Though the state has made "remarkable" progress in its fight against caste discrimination, sadly, the social evil still exists in some minds, Kerala Minister for SC/ST K Radhakrishnan, who belongs to the Scheduled Caste community, said here on Tuesday.

Recalling an incident, Radhakrishnan said that he faced caste discrimination at a temple in the state when he went there to be part of a function recently.

While attending a temple festival inauguration, he was waiting for the chief priest to invite him to light the lamp.

But, to his dismay, the priest asked his assistant to do it. The assistant priest placed the lamp on the floor instead of handing it over to him.

He went on to add that they expected him to pick it up from the ground and light it, but he refused.

“They (priests) thought I would take up the light and kindle the lamp. Should I pick it? I told them to mind their business”, the Minister said.

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Taking a dig at the temple authorities, he said while the money he gave was not considered "untouchable", he was.

“I don’t agree with going back to the days of the caste system. Those who created the caste system had a clear perspective: to keep people divided. Those who created the caste system are (more) intelligent and smarter than people involved in the Chandrayaan mission”, Radhakrishnan added.

Even though Radhakrishnan chose not to name the said temple, on Tuesday it surfaced that it took place at the Nambiatrakovval Siva Temple in Payyanur near Kannur in January.

The temple authorities while agreeing to the incident, is maintaining silence and are yet to come out with an explanation.

The matter now snowballing into a controversy, has evoked a mixed reaction with some expressing their displeasure on the incident, while others defending the temple authorities saying at places of worship, tradition and culture should not be violated.

With inputs from IANS

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TAGS:Kerala NewsCaste Discrimination
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