In a gruesome incident, four Dalits were hacked to death, allegedly by members of an upper caste community, in Dhode ka Pura village, which falls in Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje’s home district of Dholpur.
Senior police officials reached the spot and the situation was quickly brought under control. Collector Ashutosh A.T. Pednekar told HT the deceased were Dalits who belonged to the Jatav community. “Prima facie, it appears to be a case of an old rivalry,” the collector said. In December 2006, the Jatavs had allegedly murdered a member of the Rajput community, he added. Gopal Ram Verma, a noted Dalit activist in Jaipur, confirmed the murders were linked to earlier incidents.
The incident took place at a village-road worksite where about 40 people were present. The deceased were employed as labourers at the site. About a dozen people attacked brothers Ratan Lal, Nathi Lal and Ram Swarup and their cousin Ramveer with firearms and sharp-edged weapons. According to the FIR lodged at Bari police station, of the 11 persons named as accused, nine of them are from the Rajput community of neighboring Rewai village, while the other two are from the Gujjar community.
Dinesh Vashishtha, SHO in Dholpur district, said the accused were involved in other crimes as well but were residing in Madhya Pradesh. They had come to Dholpur just to commit the crime. Several police teams had been sent to nab the culprits.