‘Swachh Bharat Mission’ will be a success only if casteist minds become clean’

Mysuru:  Maintaining that ‘Swachh Bharat Mission’ is not only about cleaning roads and other places with broom sticks, former Minister and senior BJP leader V. Sreenivasa Prasad has said that the Mission will become a success in the true sense only if casteist mindset goes off in the society.

He was speaking at B. Basavalingappa Memorial Programme organised by V. Sreenivasa Prasad Fans Association at Rani Bahadur auditorium on Hunsur Road, Manasagangothri, on Sunday, during which writer Malkundi Mahadevaswamy’s work titled ‘Bayalu Bahirdese – Ondu Samajika Anishta’ was also released.

Observing that Swacch Bharat Mission should not only be environment cleaning but also cleaning of casteist minds, Prasad maintained that B. Basavalingappa’s campaigns for Dalit Rights had invoked self-respect among Dalit communities.

Pointing out that B. Basavalingappa, who was a tall Dalit leader in the sixties and seventies, had fought for Buddha, Basava and Dr. Ambedkar’s ideals, he said that Basavalingappa always believed that equality can become a reality only when it is truly practiced.

Regretting that the Government is yet to fulfil the assurances given to MCC Pourakarmikas ahead of Dasara celebrations, Prasad maintained that he, as a Minister in the Siddharamaiah Government, had urged the CM to abolish the Contract System and thus come to rescue of thousands of Contract Pourakarmikas, who had no job security and statutory benefits.

Speaking after releasing writer Malkundi Mahadevaswamy’s work ‘Bayalu Bahirdese – Ondu Samajika Anishta,’ senior littérateur Dr. Siddalingaiah said that Dalits should come out of superstitions.

Referring to a Ph.D thesis which shed light on why villagers at a remote village in Davanagere district were hesitant to build toilets, he said that the villagers had claimed that they were only following Lord Shiva who openly defecated in the village.

Stating in a lighter vein that toilets were centres of communal harmony, which are used by everyone irrespective of their caste and creed, he called upon the Dalit communities to shed superstitions and fight for equality.

MLA and JD(S) State President A.H. Vishwanath, Kuvempu Institute of Kannada Studies (KIKS) Director Dr. Neelagiri M. Talawar, writer Malkundi Mahadevaswamy, V. Sreenivasa Prasad Fans Association President P. Nandakumar, General Secretary D. Venkataraju and others were present during the programme.

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