A BJP MP in Karnataka was stopped from entering a village on Monday allegedly because he is from a different caste. A Narayanaswamy, a Lok Sabha MP from Chitradurga, had gone to his constituency for a drinking water project when the incident took place at a village, barely 100 km from India's Silicon Valley Bengaluru.
Though the politician has not filed a complaint, the district administration has started an investigation on its own. "Action will be taken against those found guilty," said senior police officer Vamsi Krishna.
When Mr Narayanaswamy went to Gollarahatti - a village where Golla community members live - he was stopped by villagers and told that the village has a tradition of not allowing those from lower castes to enter.
"We have traditions. There is a history of incidents. So people said he should not be allowed," a villager, Nagaraj, told news agency ANI.
The Gollas belong to the category of Other Backward Classes.
The MP reportedly wanted to visit a temple in the village. "As a tradition, we have never allowed any other caste into the temple and we conveyed this to the MP because if we allow it, there will be objections from the Yadava community and other villages as well. Other villagers will also not come to temple as it's a tradition since our ancestors' time," a villager said.
Some villagers did invite Mr Narayanaswamy to their homes despite objections from a majority of their comrades, but the MP left.
Mr Narayanaswamy told reporters he did not want a fight in the village over him.
Reports said the MP was touring his constituency to explore plans for roads and a clean water plant when the incident took place.
The BJP took power in Karnataka in July after the Janata Dal Secular-Congress coalition government crashed because of multiple defections.