Jaipur: Sociologist and political psychologist Ashis Nandy on Saturday made a controversial statement at the Jaipur Literature Festival claiming that Dalits and other backward castes were responsible for the corruption in the Indian society today.
"It is a fact that most of the corrupt come from the OBC and the Scheduled Caste sections, and now the Scheduled Tribes," he said. "The maximum amount of corruption these days is by Dalits, the backward and the oppressed classes," he added.
Sources said that the Jaipur Police Commissioner has sought an explanation from the organisers of the festival.
The remark has triggered a row, with political parties slamming the sociologist. Congress leader Rashid Alvi said, "I don't know why he has said it. But no one approves such statements." BJP leader Najma Heptullah said, "It is wrong on his part to do so. I don't want to comment about corruption being conducted by the SC, ST or the Dalits. It's very wrong to pass such a comment."
Dalit writer Chandrabhan Prasad said, "Has there been a survey or a data or any evidence that proves OBC and SC/ST are more corrupt? If there is no such survey or evidence then such statements should not be passed. That means he is misusing his intellectual power, like others have misused their power."
Nandy, however, said that he stood by his statement. "Let the police take action against me. I stand by what I have said," he said.
Meanwhile, Festival organiser Sanjoy Roy sought to defend Nandy saying that his statement had been taken out of context. "I have heard that his saying has been taken out of context. He said where there is so much difference between rich and poor, there is corruption. It is his personal statement," he said.