Dalit leaders walk out of Karnataka CM’s meet

BENGALURU: The ire of Dalits came to the fore at a meeting convened by CM Siddaramaiah to discuss allocation of funds for the downtrodden with some leaders staging a walk out after demanding the state government to make its stand clear on the issue of internal reservations within the Scheduled Castes here on Saturday. Drama unfolded during the pre-budget meeting at the CM's Home Office as Dalit leaders insisted the state government to clarify its stand on implementation of the A. J. Sadashiva Commission report. Prominent among them were Bahujan Samaj Party state co-ordinator Marasandra Muniyappa and Dalit Sangharsh Samiti president N. Murthy. They mobbed the Chief Minister, and refused to heed to his plea for suggestions.

Evidently unhappy with the ruckus caused by these two leaders, Mr Siddaramamaih threatened that he would leave the meeting hall. However, these two Dalit leaders boycotted the meeting and walked out.

Later, Mr Murthy charged Mr Siddaramaiah with dividing Dalit communities “hurting their interests”. “We (Dalits) will not allow him to divide us on caste lines. We Chalavadis and Madigas are like two eyes of this community. We have toiled for 45 years to unite various Dalit communities and ensure that they received benefits. But Mr Siddaramaiah is obstructing our work to uplift Dalits and trying tor divide our community on the lines of  Lingayts,” he said.

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