Why this India priest carried an ‘untouchable’ into a temple

Source: BBC News

A Hindu priest from a temple in the southern Indian city of Hyderabad made headlines for carrying a Dalit (formerly known as untouchable) man on his shoulders into the temple’s inner sanctum.

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It has been seen as a dramatic move because Dalits have historically been denied entry into temples as they are considered “impure” by many conservative Hindus. Even today, most temples in India do not allow Dalits to enter.

“I wanted to show people that everyone is equal in the eyes of god,” the priest, CS Rangarajan, told BBC Telugu’s Balla Satish.

Dalits are among India’s most downtrodden citizens because of an unforgiving Hindu caste hierarchy that condemns them to the bottom of the heap. Despite laws to protect them, discrimination remains a daily reality for the country’s roughly 200 million Dalits.

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