A 12-year-old Dalit boy was allegedly beaten to death by villagers in Uttar Pradesh's Hardoi district for stealing wheat from the fields, police said on Friday.
Three men have been booked for killing the Dalit boy, police said.
"Preliminary investigations reveal the three men killed the Dalit boy. All the three are absconding," police inspector Arvind Rathore said in Hardoi.
Kamlesh Kumar, a resident of Kashipur village in Hardoi, about 110 km from Lucknow, was repeatedly assaulted with wooden sticks and iron rods on Thursday, following which he died in the fields.
According to police, Kumar was initially spotted hiding in the wheat fields of Neeraj Singh.
When Singh learned about Kumar's presence, he, along with two of his aides, started beating Kumar, accusing him of stealing wheat, police added.
"We have detained some of Singh's close associates to ascertain his whereabouts," Rathore said.