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Family awaits compensation and job

punjab Updated: Jul 28, 2013 22:23 IST
Jatinder Kohli
Jatinder Kohli
Hindustan Times
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Family of former Dalit sarpanch of Shushewal, Chaman Lal, who committed suicide on June 4, is yet to receive the announced ex-gratia grant from the National Commission for Scheduled castes (NCSC) and the administration.

NCSC vice-chairman Raj Kumar Verka had met Lal's family on June 5 and held a meeting with the administration. He had announced an ex-gratia amount of Rs 5 lakh and a government job for one member of the family.

The Punjab State Scheduled Caste Commission had recommended free education for Lal's children. However, four of the children are studying in a government school and the fee for the elder daughter, who studies in a private school, is still being paid by the family.

The state commission had announced a compensation of Rs 10 lakh and a job to one member of the family, but only Rs 3 lakh have been given so far.

Shanti (38), the wife of Lal, said "Our lives have almost halted after that incident. She was our only bread-winner. The loss is irreparable. However, we need funds to rebuild our lives." She claimed that organisations had only milked the incident for their political gains and they had been left to fend for themselves.

"Two months on, we are clueless on the implantation of the promises made," she claimed.Lal's son, Chandan, said: "The promises have so far not been honoured. We hope that things improve."

Rajesh Bagha, chairman of state SC commission, said that the remaining part of ex-gratia grant would be soon release to sarpanch's family. He also said that he would ask district welfare officer to make arrangement for free education for elder daughter of Chaman Lal.

HT also tried to contact NCSC director Raj Kumar, but he did not respond to calls. Chaman Lal had committed suicide by consuming a poisonous substance after being allegedly threatened and publically humiliated by workers of ruling Akali party at a panchayat meeting in the village.