India to release postal stamp in the name of a backward Caste-Dalit chieftain Suhaldev.
- Postal stamp to be issued by Indian Prime Minister contain the caste name of Suheldev and the sub-categorisation of the OBC quota.
- About Suhaldev
- Suhaldev is a semi-legendary Indian king from Shravasti, who is said to have defeated and killed the Ghaznavid general Ghazi Saiyyad Salar Masud at Bahraich, in the early 11th century.
- Though there is no unanimity among historians and scholars about the true caste origins of Suheldev, he is generally identified as belonging to the Bhar community, a backward caste. However, both the Rajbhar and the Pasi communities stake claim to his legacy.
- He is mentioned in Mirat-i-Masudi, a 17th-century Persian-language historical romance.
- In later Hindutva-influenced versions, Suhaldev is characterized as a cow protector, patron of saints and benefactor of Hindus
- Various caste groups have attempted to appropriate Suhaldev as one of their own. According to Mirat-e-Masudi, Suhaldev belonged to the “Bhar Tharu” community
- During the 1950s and 1960s, the local politicians started characterizing Suhaldev as a Pasi king to influence the Pasis, a Dalit community and an important votebank around Bahraich
- Maharaja Suhaldev Sewa Samiti, an organization formed by Hindu nationalist activists in Bahraich in 2001, has been organizing various programmes to commemorate Suhaldev as a defender of the Hindu faith