Mous­tache protest

Sunday Star-Times - - WORLD -

The right to grow a mous­tache has be­come the fo­cus of ris­ing caste ten­sions in western In­dia. Sev­eral men from the Dalit caste, for­merly known as ‘‘un­touch­ables’’ and the low­est rung in In­dia’s per­ni­cious caste hi­er­ar­chy, have been beaten up and stabbed for sport­ing a mous­tache in the western state of Gu­jarat over re­cent days. Higher­caste men have ap­par­ently taken it upon them­selves to en­force an an­cient tra­di­tion that their ‘‘in­fe­ri­ors’’ should not grow fa­cial hair. A mous­ta­chioed on­line protest move­ment has sprung up in re­sponse, start­ing with friends of the vic­tims and ex­pand­ing to other Dalit com­mu­ni­ties. Many have posted pho­tos on so­cial me­dia of them­selves raff­ishly twirling their new face fur­ni­ture. A move­ment to end the ‘‘un­touch­able’’ stigma within 30 years was launched in Gu­jarat re­cently, with more than 1000 Dalit vil­lages sign­ing up.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.