Sh. Yash Pal Singal, IPS
Haryana - 134109
24 August 2015
Subject: Request for action against persons committing atrocities on Dalit members in Dharaudi Village, Tehsil: Narvana, District: Jeend
This is to bring to your notice the ongoing tension emerging out of the conflict over distribution of land to below poverty line (BPL) members of Dalit community in Dharaudi Village in Narvana Tehsil, District Jeend.
On 18th July 2015, while the district administration was trying to distribute land to the Dalit BPL members, the members of dominant caste group (jaats), forcefully stalled the distribution of plots to BPL families under the leadership of former Sarpanch of Dharaudi, Dheera Pradhan. This former Sarpanch also instigated and led people from his community (jaats) to attack the Dalit basti in the evening. It is worth mentioning here that Dheera Pradhan is a political opponent of the present Sarpanch Mahendra Singh who also belongs to the Jaat community.
In the disorder and chaos created by the obstruction and attack on Dalit BPL families at the site of land distribution led by Dheera Pradhan, Dhreera Pradhan’s nephew Vikramjit Singh reportedly got killed. Sukhiram, the Dalit representative in the Panchayat sustained grievous injuries along with other Dalit members namely, Kuldip, Rajkumar, and Omprakash. Some Dalit women have also sustained injuries in this attack. It has been alleged by Dheera Pradhan that Sukhiram’s son Balraj started beating Vikramjit after Sukhiram got injured.
Police has filed an FIR to investigate the incident of death of Vikramjit Singh. However, only the statements of Dheera Pradhan and Dharamvir, Vikramjit’s father and Dheera Pradhaan’s brother have been recorded by the police. Eight people, all belonging to the opposite political camp of Dheera Pradhan including 5 members of Dalit community, have been named in the FIR. They are Mahendra Singh, Mandeep, Sandeep, Sukhiram(Dalit), Balraj (Dalit), Dayanand (Dalit), Kaala (Dalit), and Naresh (Dalit), and seven of them except for Kaala have already been arrested.
In light of the above mentioned facts, PUDR requests you to:
- Impartially probe into the killing of Vikramjit Singh
Registration of FIRs on attack on Dalit BPL families, putting a public bus on fire, and later attack on Dalit basti, causing severe injuries to Dalit members, manhandling of women by the members of jaat community under the leadership of Dheera Pradhan and forcing dalits to flee their homes.
Fair and impartial investigation into the matter properly and not be guided by Dheera Pradhan.
The role of Dheera Pradhan who has a political motive in starting the whole conflict and attack on BPL families and Dalit basti, due to impending elections, be also investigated.
Action against police officers who refused to register the complaints of Dalit members as per provisions of Sec 166A and 166B of the CrPC.
Ensure that the Dalit members who were forced out of the village and have not yet returned are called back under a safe haven and protection be provided to them against the likes of Dheera Pradhan.
It is a very serious issue and not just a law and order problem. The attack on Dalits during distribution of land and impending village panchayat elections led by the former pradhan has more to it than meets the eye. Dheera Pradhan instigated the community to attack on underprivileged and backward members of the village during distribution of land, to get political mileage for the coming elections and also to give caste color to the entire exercise of the district administration. The Dalit members of the village are poor, backward and do not have any land in their name, forcing them out of the village is a series of acts which culminates in adverse occupation of the lands allotted to these members by dominant Jat community. Similar instances have happened in Bhagana village in 2012.
It should be a matter of shock and introspection that police has allegedly acted in aid of the former Pradhan and his entourage in disrupting the process of land allotment by the district administration and subsequently in attack of Dalit members of the village, by not providing any protection to dalits, by not registering their complaints, and by arresting Dalit members only on statement of Dheera Pradhan, without conducting any investigation.
In an act of this kind involving a attack led by dominant caste groups on suppressed caste groups, it becomes even more imperative for the law enforcing agency like the police to act fairly in a non-partisan manner, which to the disappointment of everyone, has failed to act so.
We hope that you and your office will be swift in taking remedial actions, will restore the faith of people in the police by personally investigating the matter in fair, transparent, and non-biased manner.
Sharmila Pukayastha, Megha Bahl
Peoples Union for Democratic Rights