Maharashtra: 13-Yr-Old Dalit Boy Beaten Up, Paraded Naked For Allegedly Offering Chocolates To Upper Caste Girl
In another harrowing case of caste violence in India, a 13-year-old boy from Kolhapur in Maharashtra was brutally beaten up for allegedly holding the hands of an upper caste girl and for offering chocolates to her. Reportedly, the incident occurred on Friday, September 21 and the boy, who belongs to a scheduled caste was paraded naked from his house to the gram panchayat office.
Why was the minor boy beaten?
An officer of the Ajara police station told The Times Of India that the families of the girl and the boy knew each other very well. A month ago, the boy, while returning from school had offered a chocolate to the girl and held her hand as well. The girl told the incident to her family, after which tensions between both the families sparked.
The girl’s family, as a precautionary measure had sent the 10-year-old to her uncle’s house in Mumbai. The uncle then paid a visit to the village two days before the incident. The officer told the daily that the uncle and his friend entered the boy’s house, locked him inside a room and started beating him. Later he even paraded the boy naked to the gram panchayat, abusing him and his parents on the way informed the officer.
Superintendent of police, Abhinav Deshmukh said that they rushed to the spot when the police were informed of the incident. While the boy was immediately taken to the hospital for treatment, two people in connection with the case were booked under sections 452 (house trespass and preparation for hurt, assault or wrongful restraint), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 504 (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code as well as the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act 1989.
While tension loomed large over the village on Friday, the police claim to have brought the situation under control. The SP had informed that as a part of the precautionary measure a police force had been employed in the village to ensure peace. Moreover, a meeting involving members of both the communities was convened on Friday night.
Caste atrocities across India
Trauma and torture inflicted upon members of the lower caste by the upper castes have become awfully common across India. News reports of caste-based atrocities in India highlight how grave the problem actually is.
In June, a 13-year-old Dalit was beaten up by four Rajput youths for wearing Mojdi ( Rajwadi shoe worn by Rajput men), a fake gold chain and according to his attackers, “posing” as a member of the upper-caste Darbar in Becharaji town of Mehsana district, Gujarat. One of the attackers recorded the video of the atrocity and circulated it on social media.
On June 17, three minor Dalit boys were beaten and paraded naked in a village in Jalgaon for allegedly swimming in a village well.
In the same month, a 30-year-old Dalit man was allegedly beaten by the village sarpanch in Tikamgarh district in Madhya Pradesh for riding a bike in front of their house. Dayaram Ahirwar in his complaint has accused that the village sarpanch Hemant Kurmi, his brothers and a neighbour roughed him up on June 21. The video showing the victim being abused and beaten up went viral two days after the incident occurred.