Assault on 3 Dalit boys kicks up political storm in Raj
Three minor Dalit boys were stripped and beaten by a mob and paraded naked after they were accused of stealing a motorcycle in Rajasthan’s Chittorgarh district.
Six persons have been arrested for beating the minors against whom a theft case has been registered, police said on Tuesday, as the incident caught on a video sparked condemnation with Congress saying the attitude of the state’s BJP government towards Dalits is “absolutely condemnable”.
The boys, who belonged to Kanjar tribe who are traditionally treated as social outcasts, were going to their village on the stolen motorcycle which was identified by some youths of Laxmipura village who caught them. Police claimed the incident was not a caste-related issue and that three of the six arrested persons belonged to the ST community.
“Locals stripped and beat them after they caught them with the stolen motorcycle on Saturday in Laxmipura. Police rescued them and brought them to the local police station along with the motorcycle,” SP, Chittorgarh, Prasan Kumar Khamsera said today.
As a stolen bike was recovered from their possession, a case was registered against them as well as against the mob which thrashed them, he said.
“Six persons were arrested today for beating the minor boys,” he added.
“It was not a caste-related issue and the boys, aged between 15 and 18 years, were beaten by the villagers because they caught them with a stolen bike. Six of those who thrashed them have been arrested and others are being identified,” he said, adding, the three boys were also named in a few FIRs registered earlier.
Reacting to the incident, Rajasthan Congress chief Sachin Pilot said, “There is no rule of law in the state to protect people, especially a Dalit. This is not an isolated incident. These are happening with the Dalits everyday.” He said, “This is unacceptable if a society has this kind of a mindset. The government’s attitude towards Dalits is absolutely condemnable. It is unfortunate that Rajasthan ranks second in terms of Dalit atrocities.”
State Women and Child Development Minister Anita Badhel said strict action will be taken against those involved in the attack.