By Tenzin Dharpo
Chilkur Balaji Temple Archaka CS Rangarajan carrying a Dalit devotee on his shoulder on April 17, 2018 in Hyderabad. Photo- facebook
DHARAMSHALA, April 23: In a gesture of appreciation, the Tibetan leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama has written to the Indian Hindu priest who in a bid to spread the message of equality, carried a Dalit devotee on his shoulder into the Sri Ranganatha temple at Jiaguda in Hyderabad.
The Tibetan leader who has on several occasion expressed his deep reservations on the caste system, still practiced in some parts of India to be “out of date” practice. In his letter to Rangarajan, the egalitarian Tibetan leader, Telangana Today
reported, wrote, “I was moved by your statement that you wanted to show people that everyone is equal in the eyes of god”.
Earlier last week, priest Archaka C S Rangarajan carried Aditya Parasri, a devotee hailing from the Hindu Dalit community considered by some section of the Hindu community to be lowly, on his shoulders into the sanctum sanctorum of the sacred temple.
CS Rangarajan, the Chilkur Balaji Temple priest’s gesture on April 17, many say sent out a strong message opposing oppression of dalits around India. Dalits face social exclusion and are looked down upon by some sections of the Hindu caste hierarchy. Dalits in some section of India are still deemed untouchable although the Indian constitution has passed law abolishing it.
Rangarajan said “This is the re-enactment of a 2,700-year old incident. It is being done to re-establish the greatness of Sanatana Dharma and to propagate equality among all sections of the society”.