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Seer calls for end to social boycott

By Our Staff Correspondent

CHITRADURGA, DEC. 22. Sri Shivamurthy Murugharajendra Swamiji has condemned the practice of social boycott among the Devanga community at Belagur village in Hosadurga taluk.

He has urged the community to discontinue the practice immediately.

Reacting to the report that appeared in the columns of The Hindu about the imposition of social boycott on families that had gone in for inter-caste marriages, the swamiji expressed displeasure over the practice.

Speaking to The Hindu over the telephone on Wednesday from Bhalki in Bidar district, the swamiji offered to convince the people of the Devanga community, who had excommunicated as many as 10 families, to revoke the same and end the practice.

"Such practices need to be banned. We should educate the people about the ill effects of the caste system. It is really a matter of shame that many people still believe in such practices, when the world is progressing towards a casteless society," he said.

`Unconstitutional'

He said that the practice was unconstitutional. "The Constitution guarantees the right to practice any religion. It is unacceptable that people are prevented from offering prayers to their deities. Everyone is free choose their life partner and the dictums of religious heads should hardly matter," he added.

The swamiji said that he would lead an awareness march in Belagur village.

He also said that inter-caste and inter-religious marriages are tools to eradicate the caste system in the country.

They have been recognised by the Governments by way of giving incentives, he added.

G. Thippeshi, president of the Hosadurga Taluk Devanga Sangha, expressed his determination to put an end to the practice.

"This practice is not prevalent elsewhere in our community. It is restricted only to Belagur village. The social ban will be revoked in consultation with the elders of the village soon," he said.

The in-charge Deputy Commissioner and District Magistrate, S.H. Vijay Kumar, said that he had directed the tahsildar to submit a report in this regard.

"If the situation warrants, the district administration will intervene to put an end to the practice as per the provisions of law," he said.

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