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He fought for cleanliness: Mother of man killed for protesting public urination

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday condemned Ravinder’s killing and directed the authorities to punish the culprits.

delhi Updated: Jun 23, 2017 19:17 IST
Shiv Sunny
Shiv Sunny
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
E-rickshaw driver killed,Delhi,Public urination
The site where the e-rickshaw driver was beaten to death by a group of youths for objecting to their urinating in public. (HT Photo)

Beaten to death by a group of youths, allegedly for objecting to two of them urinating on the roadside in North Delhi’s GTB Nagar on Saturday evening, the 32-year-old e-rickshaw driver always spoke for cleanliness, his family recounted on Monday even as the killers remained on the run.

“We live in a slum where maintaining cleanliness is difficult. But Ravinder always insisted that sanitation was just a matter of will,” said the victim’s mother, Susheela.

Ravinder had objected to two youths urinating on the roadside. He was later beaten to death allegedly with iron knuckles and stones wrapped in towels by the duo and their friends, a few hours after he had advised the two men to visit the public toilet nearby instead of urinating in the open. He died on the way to a hospital.

Susheela said her son put up a ‘brave’ front even in his last minutes as he laid his head on her lap on his e-rickshaw. “He was breathing heavily, but he kept telling me that he was alright and that nothing would happen to him. He was not bleeding, but I knew he was in unbearable pain,” she said.

Before breathing his last, Ravinder mentioned to his mother and brother, Vijender, that the same two youths who had entered into a quarrel with him earlier in the day had led the attack on him.

Since Ravinder was attacked at a spot located right across his home, his family had initially taken him home to administer first aid. But when his condition had worsened a few minutes later, they had decided to rush him to a hospital.

The locals signalled many cars passing by to stop before a van driver halted to help. “The van driver was on duty, transporting some goods. But when he realised that Ravinder needed to be rushed to hospital, he dumped his goods on the roadside and accommodated us in his vehicle,” said Virender.

The police have registered a murder case, there are CCTV footages of the two suspects who began the quarrel, but police have remained in the dark about the killers. The probe so far indicates that the killers could include students from the Delhi University. “Eyewitnesses have claimed that the two students who led the attack had visited the Kirori Mal College before the attack. We have the two suspects on CCTV footage from the college and near the murder spot, but we are yet to ascertain their identity,” said Milind Dumbere, DCP (north-west).

A police team spent much of Monday at the college premises to analyse the footage of the students captured by the cameras installed there. “Our college students as well as those from School of Open Learning had exams on our institute premises on Saturday. The two students have been captured heading towards the area where the SOL students were to take their exam. But their identity is not clear,” said Dinesh Khattar, principal of Kirori Mal College.

Sources said many students in the area have been questioned and at least two have been detained. But their role in the murder has not been established.

Modi steps in

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday condemned Ravinder’s killing and directed the authorities to punish the culprits. He also sanctioned Rs 1 lakh from the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund as ex-gratia to the kin of the victim.

Union minister Venkaiah Naidu and Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari visited the victim’s family on Monday and offered Rs 50,000 as interim relief. The family also received Rs 5 lakh from the lieutenant governor/chief minister relief fund.

First Published: May 30, 2017 07:52 IST