Sri Basava Jaya Mrutyunjaya Swami, seer of the Lingayat Panchamasali Peetha at Koodalasangama, announced on Saturday that he would lead a padayatra from Koodalasangama, in Bagalkot, to Bengaluru from January 14, seeking the inclusion of the Panchamasali community under 2A category of backward classes.
Addressing presspersons in Dharwad, the seer said that although two decades have passed since the demand was first made, nothing has happened and successive governments have not considered it positively.
The seer, who was among those who spearheaded the independent religion movement for Lingayat, said that being a leader from the Lingayat community, Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa owed a lot to the Panchamasali community as it had helped him climb the political ladder. “As a return gift to the community, he should include it under 2A category during his tenure as Chief Minister,” he said.
The seer also said that although the Chief Minister had promised to consider their demand during an earlier ‘dharna’ in Bengaluru and a subsequent meeting in Bengaluru, nothing has been done so far. “We had announced it earlier that we would launch a padayatra if our demands were not met. We waited for the Chief Minister to act. Although we were told that a decision would be taken at the Cabinet meeting, the subject did not come up for discussion during the last Cabinet meet,” the swami said.
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