Dalit couple denied entry into temple in Rajasthan
The priest of the Jalore city temple has been arrested, the police said.
The Rajasthan Police arrested a priest on Sunday for not allowing a newlywed Dalit couple to offer prayers in a temple in Jalore city, PTI reported.
On Saturday, the couple had halted their wedding procession at the temple in the district’s Neelkanth village to offer a coconut.
A video of the incident showed Vela Bharti, the priest, stopping the couple at the temple’s gate. Fhe family of the Dalit couple can also be seen arguing with the priest.
The bride’s cousin, Tara Ram, filed a police complaint.
“When we reached there, the priest stopped us at the gate and asked us to offer the coconut outside,” Ram said. “He asked us not to enter the temple as we are from the Dalit community.”
Some villagers joined the argument and supported the priest’s decision, Ram said.
“We pleaded with the priest a lot but he was adamant,” Ram said. “After that, we filed a complaint against the priest with the police.”
Jalore Superintendent of Police Harsh Vardhan Agarwalla said that a case was registered under the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989, against Bharti.
Meanwhile, Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia shared the video on Twitter to speak against discrimination against the Dalit couple.
“This is not acceptable in the India of my dreams,” he wrote. “Whoever thinks like this about Dalits is a traitor to the country, and its biggest enemy.”