Dalits Media Watch – English News Updates 23.10.15

15-Year-Old Charged With Theft of Pigeon Found Dead; Family Accuses Cops – NDTV


Dalits attacked in Dehradun temple – Mail Today


Temple Fest Turns Violent in Madurai, Dalit Vehicles Burnt by Caste Hindus – The New Indian Express


Dalit cousins assaulted by supporters of Jat candidate, 1 critical – The Times Of India


Karnataka: Dalit writer attacked by group of men for ‘anti-Hindu’ writings – DNA


Angry villagers target cops – The Statesman


Haryana Dalit attacks: 7-fold jump in 3 govts – The Indian Express


VK Singh sparks row with ‘dog’ remark on dalit deaths, apologizes – The Times Of India


In Ballabhgarh, talk of Dalit mahapanchayat and religious conversion grow louder – DNA


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 15-Year-Old Charged With Theft of Pigeon Found Dead; Family Accuses Cops


All India | Agencies | Updated: October 23, 2015 10:33 IST

GOHANA, HARYANA:  A 15-year-old boy was found dead yesterday with wounds all over his body, hours after he was taken away by the police in Haryana, which is battling anger after two young siblings were burnt alive in their home on Monday.


The boy’s family and several others are sitting with his body on a road near their village in Sonepat district, around 50 km from Delhi. They have demanded Rs. 10 lakh as compensation and action against two policemen who have been charged with beating the boy.

The teen, Govind, was found hanging near his house. His family alleges that he was charged with the theft of a pigeon by local people and then beaten brutally by the police. The police claim the teen ran away and committed suicide but a post mortem has confirmed injuries.

The police allegedly took away the boy for questioning on Wednesday. Relatives alleged that when his mother went to get him, the police first demanded Rs. 10,000 and then Rs. 5,000 more for his release. When the boy’s mother went with the money, they allege, she was told that he had escaped.

Govind’s brother said: “If someone runs away from police custody, what is the point of the police being there? In the morning, we found his dead body. They took our money and killed him.”

Sitting in protest next to Govind’s sobbing mother, his aunt said: “The boy had no father, no grandfather or uncle. His mother is a widow. There is no justice…His arms and legs were fractured.”

The family had earlier agreed to remove the body after the government promised action, but they have now stepped up their protest, forcing the government to send a large number of policemen to the area.

“Whoever is guilty, be it a police officer or anyone, will be arrested,” said Vinod Kumar, a senior police officer.

On Monday in another village around 80 km away, a toddler and his 11-month-old sister died after their house was set on fire, allegedly by members of an upper caste community.

Mail Today

 Dalits attacked in Dehradun temple


 The cops accepted the complaint only when a large number of Dalits, led by Jabbar Singh, a local Dalit leader sat on dharna at the police station.

Piyush Shrivastava   |    |   Mail Today  |   Lucknow, October 23, 2015 | UPDATED 10:12 IST

Some upper caste men at Mahasu-Devata temple in Laksiyar-Kenota village of Kalsi in Dehradun district attacked three Dalits including a woman for offering prayer there.

The injured Dalits, Babli Kumari, Dinesh Prasad and Tara Chand have registered a complaint with Kalsi police. “While we were worshiping there on the occasion of Dussehra, some people who were looking after the management of the temple started misbehaving with us. First, they thrashed us with hands and then beat up with an iron bar in full public view. Some devotees reacted against this attack and saved us”, they have stated.

The cops accepted the complaint only when a large number of Dalits, led by Jabbar Singh, a local Dalit leader sat on dharna at the police station. Hariom Chauhan, Station House Officer said, “We are probing the case. Further action would be taken against the accused persons after the report comes.”

It was only recently that the Dalits in Uttarkhand had organized a protest to allow them to enter the temples of Kukursi-Devata in village Gabela under Chakrata block. The local administration had accepted their demand.

The New Indian Express

 Temple Fest Turns Violent in Madurai, Dalit Vehicles Burnt by Caste Hindus


By Pon Vasanth Arunachalam Published: 23rd October 2015 03:24 AM Last Updated: 23rd October 2015 09:07 AM

MADURAI:Tension prevailed in Elumalai and Athankaraipatti villages after at least four vehicles belonging to Dalits from the latter village were torched by caste Hindus and few others were injured in a clash that broke out on Wednesday evening at a temple festival. The villages, located around 60 km west of Madurai, were celebrating the Muthalamman temple festival.

Police said that around 500 Dalits from Athankaraipatti, including women and children, had reached the entrance of Elumalai along the banks of Kanakankulam kanmai (tank) for ethir sevai, a ritual in which deities from Elumalai and Athankaraipatti meet each other.

Facing them, around 2,000 people belonging to different intermediate castes from Elumalai had gathered. As the ceremony began, police said that a few caste Hindus made abusive remarks against the Dalits, ridiculing their presence in the sacred rituals. While police and the caste Hindus claimed that the Dalits soon started throwing chappals, the Dalits of Athankaraipatti claimed that it was the caste Hindus who started pelting stones and abuses.

“We were in their village and they outnumbered us. How will we start pelting stones when many children and women were with us?” questioned P Karupaiya, the panchayat president of Athankaraipaatti. “We rushed back to our village, more than a kilometre away, leaving some of our vehicles,” he added.

The Dalits said that three motorbikes and a mini van carrying a generator were torched by the caste Hindus. At least three Dalits, including S Suruli, an elderly man and a Class XII student were grievously injured.

Police said the caste Hindus continued their rampage inside Elumalai, damaging two police vehicles and another vehicle belonging to the Peraiyur Tehsiildar. They also allegedly pelted stones at the Elumalai police station. The police resorted to lathi-charge to bring the situation under control.

Athankaraipatti villagers alleged that the situation flared up as the police presence was inadequate.

Karupaiya said they anticipated untoward incidents as caste Hindus were bringing up issues ever since the festival began on October 13. “We had petitioned the SP and Collector. They should have deployed more personnel,” he said.

Senior police and revenue officials acknowledged that their focus on Wednesday was mainly on the nearby communally sensitive Uthapuram, another participating village in the festival. The official however added that the situation was brought under control immediately.

Six cases have been registered, including three against caste Hindus on complaints by the Dalits and one against the Dalits on a complaint by caste Hindus as they claimed the Dalits pelted stones at them. Two more were booked  on complaints by police themselves and the Peraiyur Tehsildar against unidentified persons. At least 20 persons, including three Dalits, have been secured so far.

A huge posse of police has been deployed in both Elumalai and Athankaraipatti with temporary check posts regulating entry to these villages.

The Times Of India

 Dalit cousins assaulted by supporters of Jat candidate, 1 critical


Pankul Sharma,TNN | Oct 23, 2015, 07.28 AM IST

MEERUT: Supporters of a Jat candidate for village head allegedly assaulted two Dalit cousins who refused to support the candidate late on Wednesday night. The victims, one of who is in critical condition, are in hospital while an FIR has been filed against four assailants. 

The incident occurred in Katha village of Baghpat district, where supporters of Sahab Singh allegedly assaulted cousins Jaidev and Bijendra with edged weapons after they refused to support him. “Late on Wednesday evening, four men came to my house and asked me to vote for Sahab Singh as village head in the upcoming election. I refused to do so and told them that I would be giving my vote to another candidate, Billu. They beat me up and stabbed me with knives. When my cousin, Bijendra, tried to intervene, they assaulted him as well and slit his throat. Then they escaped after warning me to follow their instructions or face dire consequences,” said Jaidev, talking to TOI. 

After the incident, the victims’ family rushed them to Baghpat Kotwali, from where the police took them to the local health centre. Bijendra was taken to Meerut in critical condition. At the Kotwali, local Dalits alleged that Jats from the village had been putting pressure on them to vote for candidates of the latter’s choice. The incident has caused tension between the two communities of the village. 

“An FIR has been lodged against Pradeep, Deepak, Sonu and an unidentified person,” said ASP Vidya Sagar Mishra, adding that police is conducting raids and hopes to catch them soon. Meanwhile, the prospective candidate, Sahab Singh, has distanced himself from the accused and said that he does not know anything about them. He said that his political opponents committed the crime in an attempt to defame him. 


 Karnataka: Dalit writer attacked by group of men for ‘anti-Hindu’ writings


Friday, 23 October 2015 – 10:27am IST | Agency: dna webdesk

The men allegedly told him his writings were ‘anti-Hindu’ because he had spoken about the caste system.

A 23-year-old student of journalism was attacked on Thursday for his ‘anti-Hindu’ his writings. Huchangi Prasad a student at the Davangere University was attacked at his hostel in the early hours of the day by a group of men.

According to a report in The Hindu, Prasad had published a book more than a year ago which was perceived as ‘controversial’ by some people. On Thursday, an unidentified man reportedly came to the SC/ST hostel at the university and told Prasad that his mother was in the hospital as she had a heart attack. Prasad went with the man believing it to be true but was attacked in the APMC Yard by eight to ten men.

The men allegedly told him his writings were ‘anti-Hindu’ because he had spoken about the caste system. They put kumkum on his face and told him they will cut off his fingers to end his writing career.

Prasad ran and hid in the woods after the attack and came out several hours later when he was sure the group had left. According to The Hindu report, he has filed a case with the police.

The Statesman

 Angry villagers target cops


Abhay Singh  New Delhi, | 23 October, 2015

The situation in Sunped village, where a Dalit family of four was set on fire by upper caste men on Tuesday morning resulting in the death of two children, remained tense as angry villagers accused police personnel of tampering with evidence. 

The controversy started when a forensic team visited the spot on Thursday to gather evidence and angry villagers confronted the police personnel posted in the area saying they were tampering with the evidence in the room where Jitendra Kumar’s family was set ablaze. 

The villagers accused the police personnel of refusing to help them and blamed them for the tragic deaths of the children. They also alleged that the police was helping the upper castes. 

They pointed out that the room where the incident took place should have been sealed till the CBI team arrived.

“The police only helps the upper castes, neglecting the Dalits,” they said. 

The situation was getting heated when a senior official of the Haryana police arrived and the matter was resolved with the cops sealing the area. Police claimed that the forensic team only visited the area to get some evidence and nothing was tampered with.

“The case is very sensitive and we will not leave any stone unturned in the investigation,” police said. 

Three more suspects were arrested for their alleged involvement in the killing of the Dalit children. In the first information report, Jitendra Kumar named 11 people as being involved in the attack. Seven persons have been arrested so far and four, according to the police, are absconding. Sources claimed that the role of some police officials is also under the scanner.

The Indian Express

 Haryana Dalit attacks: 7-fold jump in 3 govts


Written by Manoj C G | New Delhi | Published:October 22, 2015 3:13 am

The major cases of violence include lynching of five Dalits in Dulina village in Jhajjar district in 2002, burning down of Dalit houses in Gohana in 2005 and burning alive of a physically challenged girl and her septuagenarian father in Mirchpur in 2010.

Data available with the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) show a seven-fold increase over 15 years in the number of incidents of crime against Scheduled Castes in Haryana.

In 2014, Haryana reported 830 incidents of crime against Scheduled Castes — Dalits form roughly 20 per cent of the state’s total population of 2.5 crore, according to the 2011 census.

This figure was 117 in 2000. Since then, the count has been going up in the state under different governments.

INLD’s Om Prakash Chautala was Chief Minister between 2000 and 2005. Bhupinder Singh Hooda of the Congress succeeded him and was in power until October last year. In 2005, there were 288 incidents which went up to 380 in 2010 and reached 830 in 2014.

These are the NCRB figures for Haryana over the last 15 years: 117 in 2000; 229 in 2001; 243 in 2002; 195 in 2003; 217 in 2004; 288 in 2005; 283 in 2006; 227 in 2007; 341 in 2008; 303 in 2009; 380 in 2010; 408 in 2011; 252 in 2012; 493 in 2013; and, 830 in 2014.

According to government figures tabled in Parliament, as many as 444 cases were registered under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act in 2014 alone. In 2011, Haryana police registered 408 cases, it went down to 252 in 2012, shot up to 493 in 2013 and touched 444 in 2014. The rate of conviction in these cases is dismal, averaging around 12 per cent.

The major cases of violence include lynching of five Dalits in Dulina village in Jhajjar district in 2002, burning down of Dalit houses in Gohana in 2005 and burning alive of a physically challenged girl and her septuagenarian father in Mirchpur in 2010.

The Times Of India

 VK Singh sparks row with ‘dog’ remark on dalit deaths, apologizes


TNN | Oct 23, 2015, 04.03 AM IST

NEW DELHI: BJP’s run of controversial statements continues with minister of state V K Singh’s ill-phrased comment that the government cannot be held responsible if a stone is thrown at a dog – in the context of the murder of two dalit children in Faridabad – inviting a storm of criticism from opposition parties.

Though Singh tried to initially defend his remarks, by late evening he apologized for them.Sources said his fuller apology came after BJP chief Amit Shah spoke to him.

“I will be very clear on this that in case, because of this mixing up of two things, which someone else has done, if somebody’s feelings have been hurt, I am apologizing for it. Because some people have created a totally different picture altogether, which was never there. I had no intention of hurting anybody. Because of this imaginative linking of somebody if somebody’s feelings have been hurt, I apologize whole-heartedly,” Singh told ANI before flying to Thailand on a ministerial assignment.

The opposition pounced on Singh’s comments and demanding he be sacked. The issue resonated in Bihar as well where RJD chief Lalu Prasad came down heavily on the minister and BJP at a time when the NDA feels a significant section of dalits are finally moving towards it.

Singh’s made the controversial remarks when he was in Ghaziabad, the constituency he represents in the Lok Sabha. Referring to the Faridabad incident in which two children were burnt alive on the intervening night of October 19-20, Singh said that it was a case of personal feud and it needed to be seen if there had been an administrative lapse. He then said, “For everything…like if somebody throws a stone at a dog, then the government is responsible…it is not like that.”

The dog analogy immediately provoked demands for his ouster with the AAP seeking the registration of a criminal case under the Scheduled Castes Prevention of Atrocities Act. The opposition also sought to draw parallels with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “puppy” remark, made in the 2014 campaign, with reference to Gujarat riots which was construed as directed against Muslims.

Singh, however, later clarified and described as “dastardly and cowardly act” the killing of two little children in Faridabad “which is a shocking reflection on the state of our society.”

“From all indications, the horrific incident was triggered off by a feud between two families. Our society is made up of many individuals, and the act of every sick mind cannot be put at the door of the government, regardless of which party is in power.

“It does not matter who or what the political affiliations are, the perpetrators have to be dealt with without mercy. I also appeal to the media not to deliberately twist my words out of context. What I have said and continue to say is very clear, and there is no ambiguity about it,” he said.

In its regular briefing, the BJP supported Singh and said the matter should not be blown out of proportion as he had already condemned the incident. “As far as statement of the minister V K Singh is concerned, he has himself given a clarification of the same…I think we should not blow the whole thing out of proportion,” BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra said. “This is nothing but frustration on the part of those who are giving this incident a caste colour. This is very insensitive. We condemn it,” the BJP’s ​Srikant Sharma said, 

The clarification, however, failed to appease opposition leaders, specifically as Singh’s remark is being seen through the prism of Bihar elections, where dalits are seen to be viewing the NDA positively due to the presence of Ram Vilas Paswan and Jitan Ram Manjhi in the alliance. Though the dalits used to be supporters of Lalu Prasad’s RJD and Nitish Kumar’s JD (U), they appear to have broken away to the BJP-led NDA this time.

Sensing an opportunity to cash in on this controversial remark in the middle of the elections, both Nitish Kumar and Lalu Prasad quickly jumped in to criticize Singh.

“Aghast at the senseless comment made by some BJP leaders, including the Union minister, on tragic Dalit killings in Haryana,” Kumar said in a tweet.

Lalu too tweeted on the issue, wondering what is happening in the country as Modi’s ministers were making disparaging remarks. “Desh mein ye sab kya ho raha hai..mana ki jubaan mein haddi nahi hoti par Modi ke mantrion ki badjubaani desh ke reedh ki haddi tod rahi hai (what is happening in the country, one can understand that tongue’s are boneless, but disparaging remarks by Modi’s ministers are breaking the backbone of the country,” Prasad tweeted.

Other opposition leaders too took on Singh for his remark. Senior Congress leader Manish Tewari described the dog analogy used by him as “preposterous and abominable”.

“To recall the Prime Minister of India made a similar analogy about two years back in an interview to Reuters when he said that if a pup gets crushed under the wheels of a car that needs to be empathized with. That remark was in the context of Gujarat,” he said.

Demanding that the PM sack Singh and tender an apology on his behalf, Congress spokesman Randeep Surjewala said a criminal case should be registered against the minister under the Prevention of Atrocities on Scheduled Castes Act.


 In Ballabhgarh, talk of Dalit mahapanchayat and religious conversion grow louder


Friday, 23 October 2015 – 8:11am IST | Agency: dna | From the print edition

Azaan Javaid

Talking to dna, the speakers, most of them belonging to the Bahujan Samaj Party, said that the Dalit community will debate the possibility of leaving Hinduism and choosing a religion ‘which does not believe in caste system’.

Dalit Community members shout slogans against Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar after his visit to Sunpedh village where a dalits house was set on fire allegedly by men belonging to the upper-caste community, in Ballabhgarh in Faridabad on Thursday. PTI

Dalit leaders from Haryana on Thursday said that if investigation into the killing of two children is not conducted in a fair manner, a mahapanchayat will be convened in the coming days where ‘future course of action’ would be decided after consultations with the Dalitcommunity. During a meeting with residents of Sunped village in Faridabad district, the leaders added that if ‘atrocities on Dalits continue to happen’, they would embrace Buddhism or Islam.

Talking to dna, the speakers, most of them belonging to the Bahujan Samaj Party, said that the Dalit community will debate the possibility of leaving Hinduismand choosing a religion ‘which does not believe in caste system’.

“Haryana police have arrested seven of the accused men while four are still absconding. Police told us that they will, eventually, arrest all the accused but if during police investigation we feel that a deliberate attempt is being made to shield the culprits, a mahapanchayat will be organised,” said Surinder Kardan of BSP.

The meeting, which was attended by 30-40 villagers, took place merely a few feet away from Jitendar Kumar’s house which was set ablaze on Monday allegedly by upper caste men. Kumar’s two children, a nine-month-old daughter and a two-and-a-half-year-old son died of burn injuries and suffocation while his wife, Rekha, is undergoing treatment at theSafdarjung hospital in Delhi.

“If Dalit samaj decides that we need to leave Hinduism, we will do that and if it is decided that we need to covert to Buddhism or Islam, we will do that as well,” Kardan added. In August nearly 100 Dalit families of Haryana’s Bhagana village converted to Islam in a ceremony at Jantar Mantar in Delhi

“Let this be the last act of oppression that our community has witnessed. Let there be no more atrocities. We must stand united,” said Kamal Gautam.

Another local leader from Haryana’s Meewat area spoke at the gathering, and said that they will march to the state secretariat as well as Jantar Mantar in Delhi irrespective of whether villagers from Sunped accompany them.

“We will take our struggle to New Delhi and if anyone among you would like to join us your are welcome. We will not force anyone to come with us but we will ensure that death of these children is not forgotten,” he said.

The meeting was also attended by people belonging to the adjoining villages. Among those listening to the rousing brief speeches by Dalit leaders were youth of the village. Both Pawan and Manish felt that culprits behind the killings must be punished but they were not sure if changing their religion would make a difference to what they called as ‘casteist mindset’.

In the same meeting controversial remarks of BJP Union minister General VK Singh were brought up briefly but speakers changed the topic saying,” A tragedy has taken place in this village. We don’t need to discuss Mr VK Singh’s remarks. “

Blaming a family feud for the burning alive of the two children, Singh had said, “If someone throws stones at a dog, the government is not responsible. It was a feud between two families, the matter in under inquiry.”

News monitored by AMRESH & AJEET

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