Two Dalit children lynched in Madhya Pradesh: Father of one victim accuses locals of caste discrimination, slurs

Two Dalit children were allegedly beaten to death by some people for defecating in front of a panchayat building in Madhya Pradesh's Shivpur district on Wednesday

FP Staff September 26, 2019 13:16:41 IST
Two Dalit children lynched in Madhya Pradesh: Father of one victim accuses locals of caste discrimination, slurs
  • Father of one of the two Dalit children who were reportedly beaten to death by some people for defecating in front of a panchayat building in Madhya Pradesh's Shivpur alleged they were facing discrimination over their caste in Bhavkedhi village where the incident took place.

  • The incident took place in Bhavkedhi village in the morning, Sirsod police station's inspector RS Dhakad said

  • The two children, Roshani (12) and Avinash (10), suffered serious injuries in the incident and were rushed to the district hospital where doctors declared them dead, he said

The father of one of the two Dalit children who were reportedly beaten to death by some people for defecating in front of a panchayat building in Madhya Pradesh's Shivpur district alleged they were facing discrimination over their caste in Bhavkedhi village where the incident took place. “I have no toilet at home. They always discriminate against me because of my caste” he told ThePrint. Two people have been arrested in connection with the case so far.

According to PTI, Sirsod police station's inspector RS Dhakad said that the incident took place in the Bhavkedhi village in on Wednesday morning. The two children, Roshani (12) and Avinash (10), suffered serious injuries in the incident and were rushed to the district hospital where doctors declared them dead, Dhakad said.

Manoj Balmiki, the father of one of the victims, stated that they were allowed to draw water from the village hand-pump only after all the other residents had done so. "I had a heated argument with the accused two years ago and they abused me over caste lines and threatened to kill me. They wanted me to work for them as a labourer for a meagre sum," he said.

According to CNN-News18, the two accused, Hakim Yadav and his brother Rameshwar Yadav, have been arrested and booked under Indian Penal Code (IPC) section for murder and provisions of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, said Dhakad. The investigation so far suggests there are only two accused, he added.

Inspector General (Gwalior Range) Rajababu Singh, however, told The Indian Express that Hakim was 'mentally unstable' and he killed the two children while they were on way to their grandfather’s home.

This is not the first time incidents of lynching are reported in the state. Just earlier this year in June, a differently-abled woman was lynched allegedly by a mob in Madhya Pradesh on suspicion that she was a child-lifter. In another incident, a 58-year old man was allegedly beaten to death by a mob on suspicion of stealing peacocks in Neemuch district.

The incident comes on a day when Prime Minister Narendra Modi was conferred the "Global Goalkeeper" award by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan of his government on 25 September. One of the primary goals of the programme is to make India open defecation free and has special allocation of funds to build toilets across India.

During this acceptance speech, Modi said, " In last five years a record more than 11 crore toilets were constructed. If this mission has benefited someone the most it is the poor of this country and the women."

So far, the Central Government has spent nearly Rs 70,000 crore on building toilets in the country under the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan. However, while the construction of public and household toilets has accelerated in the past few years, the practice of defecating in the open continues, according to Financial Express.

According to the report, a 2018 research paper, which surveyed 9,812 people and 156 government officials in 2014 and 2018, respectively, in the rural areas in Rajasthan, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh, noted that even though more Indians in villages owned a toilet in 2018 compared to four years ago, 44 percent of them still defecate in the open.

In 2018, the sanitation coverage of Madhya Pradesh stood at 87 percent, with over 56 lakh toilets constructed. Speeding up the process of ODF, more than six lakh toilets were constructed within a period of four months, said state government officials. In 2018, the Madhya Pradesh government had declared its urban areas to be open defecation free (ODF).

With inputs from agencies

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