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Lord Hanuman was a tribal, says NCST chairman

Chairman of the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST) Nand Kumar Sai said “There are various sub-castes in the tribal community like Hanuman, Vanar, Giddha and Jatayu.

lucknow Updated: Nov 30, 2018 08:43 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
hanuman a tribal,ram hanuman,ayodhya
A tableau depicting Lord Hanuman passes JLN road as part of the procession of Rambhakt Mandal leading to Khole Ke HanumanJi in Jaipur(HT File Photo)

Days after chief minister Yogi Adityanath called Lord Hanuman a Dalit during an election rally in Rajasthan, chairman of the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST) Nand Kumar Sai on Thursday said Lord Hanuman was a tribal.

Addressing media persons after a meeting with the state government officials, Sai said: “There are various sub-castes in the tribal community like Hanuman, Vanar, Giddha and Jatayu. It is a well-known fact that when Lord Ram was in exile, members of tribal community became his close aides. They also helped him in the battle against Ravan. Hanuman was also a tribal who resided in forest area.”

Addressing a public meeting in Malakheda area of Alwar on Wednesday, Yogi had said, “Bajrang Bali hamari bhartiya parampara mein ek aise lokdevta hain jo swayam vanvaasi hain, girvasi hain, dalit hain, vanchit hain (Lord Hanuman was a forest dweller, a Dalit and deprived).”

“Those who are Ram bhakt (devotees of Lord Ram) should vote for the BJP while those who believe in Ravan should support the Congress,” he had said.

A right wing organisation, Sarv Brahmin Mahasabha, sent a legal notice to Yogi demanding unconditional apology from him.

Saying that tribals in Uttar Pradesh were not getting benefits of government welfare schemes, the NCST chief said the UP government had submitted the utility certificate of the funds released by the Centre since 2014.

“Due to laxity on the part of UP government, the Centre has not been releasing budget for tribal welfare scheme. The tribal community was also denied benefit of welfare schemes due to an error in 2011 Census as well,” he said.

“As per the data collected by NCST, the population of tribals in the state is over 1 crore but according to 2011 Census the population of tribal community in the state is 11.34 lakh which is 0.56% of the state population,” he said.

Expressing concern over fake caste certificates in the state, Sai said, “Non-tribals get fake certificates made while a large number of tribal are not issued certificates. Tribals have also launched agitations on the issue.”

Demanding strict action against officers involved in the racket of issuing fake certificates, Sai said the Commission had asked the state government to look into the matter.

“Due to the atrocities committed by the police and forest department, a large number of tribals have joined CPI (Maoist) in Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand and other states,” he said.

Sai said Maoists were wooing tribals with the promise that they would help them get rid of atrocities.

“The Commission has urged the state government to solve the problems of tribals on priority basis. In Sarguja area of Chhattisgarh, the presence of Maoists has diminished as the problems of tribals were solved,” he said.

NCST vice-chairperson Anusuiya Uikey said the allotment of land had been denied to tribals in Sonbhadra, Chandauli, Kushinagar and other districts.

“Around 92,520 applications were received for allotment of land but merely 17,791 applications were cleared,” Uikey said.

Chief secretary Anup Chandra Pandey, who was present in the meeting, assured NCST members that utility certificate would be forwarded soon.

“Fake certificates will be cancelled and action will be taken against errant officers,” he added.

First Published: Nov 30, 2018 08:43 IST