Dalits who were found with dead cows or cow meat deserved to be beaten, BJP MLA from Hyderabad Raja Singh said on Saturday. “Jo Dalit gaye ke maas ko le ja raha tha, jo uski pitai hui hai, woh bohut hi achhi hui hai [Those Dalits who were taking the cow, the cow meat, those who were beaten, it was a very good thing to happen],” Singh said in a video uploaded on Facebook. Singh was referring to the incident in Una, Gujarat last fortnight, where four Dalit men were assaulted by cow vigilante groups when they were found skinning a dead cow. The incident had caused widespread protests.
The Telangana leader addressed Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati, and others who were criticising the assault on the Dalits, saying that many members of the community have devoted their lives to protecting cows. He then asked if it is necessary to kill cows, or eat their meat. “Yeh bahut galat hai [this is very wrong],” he said. He claimed that because of such “galeez [filthy]” Dalits, others in the community who are patriotic and religious are getting a bad name.
Singh then said he supports those who take it upon themselves to teach the Dalits “a valuable lesson”. He also warned “every section of society, not just Dalits”, that they will be taught a lesson in the same way should they kill cows. He also told other gau rakshaks (cow protectors) that while the task ahead of them is difficult, they must overcome them, and not stay silent “till the cow mother is mother India”.
You can watch the full video here:
Singh had in December got in trouble for making provocative statements following the incident in Dadri in September 2015, when a Muslim man was lynched over beef rumours. Singh had said he would stop a beef festival, organised by students of Osmania University to protest against the killing, “at any cost”.