Religious heads urge government to ban made snana

January 23, 2012 by  
Filed under Karnataka, National, newsletter-india, State

Religious Heads Urge Government to Ban Made SnanaKarnataka, January 8, 2012: The demand for a total ban on Made Snana – the controversial ritual of people rolling on leftovers of food partaken by upper caste persons gained strength on Saturday, when 18 heads of religious institutions across the state came together to condemn the practice.

“If Made Snana can cure diseases effectively, the state government should close down all the medical colleges and hospitals, and set up Subramanya temples at every nook and corner of the State, where the patients can roll on the plantain leaves with food leftovers by the Brahmins,” said Panditaradhya Shivacharya Swami of Sanehalli, speaking at a conference organised by the Nidumamidi Mahasamsthana Mutt and Manava Dharma Peetha.

The programme, organised to create public opinion against the tradition, attracted a large gathering.

An age-old ritual at Kukke Subramanya Temple in Dakshina Kannada, Made Snana is performed by people with skin and other diseases who roll on the leftovers food on banana leaves, eaten by the Brahmins.

There was much public outrage at the controversial tradition, when newspaper carried pictures and TV channels footage of people performing the ritual, prompting calls for its ban.

Panditaradhya Shivacharya, the most vocal of the Made Snana opponents at the meeting, said the practice has been kept alive to suppress the dalits and to foster their sense of inferiority.

“Who else will roll on the leftovers of the Brahmins? It’s not Brahmins, nor any other higher castes but only Dalits. I tell you that people rolling on the plantain are prone to many dangerous diseases. This evil is not less than Sati tradition and child marriage and the government must act tough,” the Swamy said and criticised the head of the Pejawar mutt for equivocating on the issue.

Tontada Siddalinga Swami of the Tontadarya Mahasamsthana Mutt pointed out the irony of a medieval ritual practiced in Dakshina Kannada which has 90 per cent literacy rate. He also took a jibe at Higher Education Minister Dr V S Acharya for observing that the controversial ritual is a matter of faith.

“Made Snana is the biggest crime against humanity. This is not only sinful but illegal too. Those who roll and those who allow others to roll should be sent behind the bars,” said the Thontadarya seer.

Veerabhadra Channamalla Swami of Nidumamidi Mutt described the ritual as shameful. “We call for a change in society, wanting to retain this rotten tradition. The leaders should say whether they are for change or superstition,” he said. Chandrashekharanath Swami of Okkaligara Mahasamsthana Mutt said the ritual violated human dignity and urged the government to stop it immediately.

People from various sections of the society were present at the meeting to convey their opposition to the tradition.

– diajiworld

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