As a Dalit, the lowest level in India's complex caste system, she was a so-called scavenger, a person who collects the garbage, feces and urine of other higher caste people. In the eyes of many, that would make her too disgusting to touch.
These are the "untouchables".
"While I was a child at 13 years old, I touched an untouchable. For that my grandmother forced me to swallow cow dung, cow urine and Ganges water to purify myself," (Dr.) Pathak said.
I guess, though, that all cultures are equally valuable. Except American culture, of course.