The marriage procession of a Dalit groom was escorted by three dozen police personnel including senior officers at Salsaria village of Mandsaur district on Wednesday after upper caste people threatened him to break his legs if he rides a horse during the procession.
Upper caste people believe Dalits are not eligible to enjoy the ceremonial practise of riding a horse to the bride’s place. They say Dalits can take out marriage processions on tractors.
Bherulala Suryavanshi, the dalit groom, was guarded by police personnel who had been camping in Salsaria for the last few days.
On Monday, Suryavanshi visited the office of superintendent of police (SP) and submitted a written complaint alleging that upper-caste villagers have threatened to thrash him if he takes out his marriage procession on a horse. The complainant added that he was also warned against involving bands in his procession. Thereafter, SP Manoj Sharma sent senior police officers to look into the matter.
Officers including additional superintendent of police (ASP) Basant Singh Vaskale, Sub-divisional officer of police (SDOP) Hari Singh Parmar, SDOP (AJAK) Prem Pal Singh and other inspectors of the district guarded Suryavanshi’s procession on Wednesday.
“We have given protection to dalits of the village. In Salsaria, there are 500 upper-caste residents and about 60 dalits. A total of 40 personnel are camping in this village including myself. Police have also given security to relatives of the complainant,” said town inspectorGopal Suryavanshi.