Hindu Gods do not anthropologically stem from the higher caste, according to JNU Vice Chancellor Santishree Dhulipudi Pandit, who delivered the keynote lecture at the Union Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment’s B R Ambedkar Lecture Series, Indian Express reported.
Pandit spoke on the topic “Dr. B.R. Ambedkar’s Thought on Gender Justice: Decoding the Uniform Civil Code.”
“Most of you should know the origins of our gods anthropologically. No god is a brahmin, the highest is a kshatriya,” the Vice Chancellor said.
“Let me tell all women that all women according to Manusmriti are shudras so no woman can claim she is a brahmin or anything else and it is only by marriage that you get the husband or father’s caste on you. I think this is something which is extraordinarily regressive,” she said.
She also said that “anthropologically” gods, including Lakshmi, Shakti, or even Jagannath do not come from the upper caste. In fact, she said, Jagannath has tribal origins.
“So why are we still continuing with this discrimination, which is extremely inhuman? It is very important that we are rethinking and reorienting the thoughts of Babasaheb. We do not have any leader of modern India who was such a great thinker. Hinduism is not a religion, it is a way of life and if it is the way of life, then why are we scared of criticism,” she asked.
In her speech on Monday, Pandit referred to the recent death of a nine-year-old Dalit boy in Rajasthan after he was allegedly assaulted by his upper-caste teacher.
“Unfortunately, there are many people who say caste was not based on birth, but today it is based on birth. If a Brahmin or any other caste is a cobbler, does he immediately become a Dalit? He doesn’t…. I’m saying this because recently in Rajasthan, a young Dalit boy was beaten to death just because he touched the water, didn’t even drink, touched the water of an upper caste. Please understand, this is a question of human rights. How can we treat a fellow human being in such a way?” she said.