A case of Dalit women being denied entry into a temple in Bulandshahr district of Uttar Pradesh has come to light with a video of the incident going viral on social media.
According to informed sources, the incident took place on October 25 but the video went viral on Wednesday.
In the six-minute long video, a man wearing a black shirt can be seen standing in front of the closed gates of a temple while voices of women can be heard demanding to know why they are not being allowed to worship at the temple.
Other voices can be heard saying that women also had the right to worship and would not leave the temple gates till they were allowed in.
To this, the man points a finger at the woman and warns her to talk politely.
A woman is heard saying, “Why don’t you kill us here? We will die here. Bring lathis… we will continue sitting here. We will not leave. Bring the whole village here. Let them also see.”
The man is then heard telling the women that the property and the temple belong to ‘Thakurs’ who are the upper caste.
“This property belongs to Thakurs. Brahmins and Thakurs have been praying here for years,” he says.
The camera then zooms into the temple and shows a man wearing a white t-shirt locking the main door and walking to the gate. Both men then stand in front of the gate and stare at their mobile phones, while the women vociferously demand to be allowed to enter the temple.
As the argument continues, the men become louder and more forceful in their refusals. The video shows at least 15 angry and agitated women standing clustered around the gate, along with a small group of school children.
Vijender Singh Valmiki, a community leader who later complained to the police on behalf of the women, said: “These people used to pray here earlier but last week some men refused to allow them entry saying they would not be allowed because they were Dalits.”
The police have registered a case of assault on October 25, under the SC/ST Act against unnamed persons who assaulted a Dalit man on the same day that the video was shot.
Bulandshahr Additional Superintendent of Police Atul Srivastava said: “We are investigating and facts are being ascertained about the video. We will act further in this case.”