Karauli priest’s death: Family, villagers end protest after govt assures Rs 10 lakh compensation
A 50-year-old temple priest died in a Jaipur hospital late on Thursday evening from the burn injuries received after he was set afire over a land dispute on Wednesday.Updated: Oct 10, 2020, 20:26 IST
After three days of protest, the family members of the priest - who was allegedly set on fire in Bukna village of Rajasthan’s Karauli district - and villagers ended their protest on Saturday evening after holding talks with the government representatives.
The 50-year-old temple priest died in a Jaipur hospital late on Thursday evening from the burn injuries received after he was set afire over a land dispute on Wednesday.
A meeting of a delegation of the villagers and family members with the district collector and the superintendent of police was held on Saturday afternoon.
“The family members will be given a relief compensation of Rs 10 lakh, a contractual job for a family member in the government, and financial help under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana,” said SP Mridul Kachawa.
He said that the station house officer (SHO) of the Sapotra police station and the local patwari have been transferred. A departmental enquiry would be conducted against them. “The investigation of this case is being done by the circle office, Hindaun. A special team from Jaipur will also come which will work in coordination with the district team to arrest the remaining accused,” Kachawa said.
Hundreds of villagers, senior BJP leaders and members of various social outfits reached Bukna village on Saturday morning and launched a protest.
Earlier, the family members were demanding compensation, government job for a family member and action against the policemen of Sapotra police station. “We are demanding Rs 50 lakh compensation, security for the family members, government job for one of the family members and the entire Sapotara police station staff to be transferred,” one of the family members said before the government announced the compensation.
“Where is the government? The deceased has six daughters and the government is not answering,” he said. “How will the family survive without the help of the government? We will not cremate the body unless our demands are fulfilled and the rest four absconding accused are arrested.”
Governor Kalraj Mishra called chief minister Ashok Gehlot on Saturday morning over law and order situation of the state in special reference to the alleged killing of the temple priest in Karauli and rape of a minor girl in Barmer, according to a release from the Raj Bhavan.
The governor expressed concern over these incidents. The CM told the governor that the state government had taken cognizance of all these incidents and Rajasthan police were investigating them.
“We will not spare any culprit. All incidents will be investigated fairly,” the CM said. Gehlot said he was keeping tabs on the law and order situation in the state and had instructed officials to take necessary action.
Meanwhile, Rajya Sabha MP Kirori Lal Meena and the Karauli-Dholpur Lok Sabha MP Manoj Rajoriya also reached Bukna village of Sapotara town on Saturday morning where they are protesting along with the deceased’s family members and villagers.
Meena had warned the government that if the demands of the family members are not met then they will reach Civil Lines with the body and launch a protest.
A three-member fact-finding committee, comprising Jaipur MP Ramcharan Bohra, national secretary Alka Gurjar and former general secretary of Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha Jitendra Meena, also reached Sapotara town.
On Wednesday, accused Kailash Meena and others from his family allegedly set the priest’s hut on fire since he had been trying to prevent encroachment on temple land. The injured priest was taken to the district hospital from where doctors sent him to Jaipur.
Vaishnav was admitted to SMS Hospital in a critical condition and succumbed to his injuries late on Thursday evening.
On Friday, the alleged killing escalated into a political row. State BJP president Satish Poonia said he had formed a 3-member committee for finding facts of the case.
Former chief minister Vasundhara Raje said in a tweet that the killing of the temple priest could not be condemned enough. “We cannot express enough grief over it,” she said.
After facing political attack, Gehlot wrote on Twitter, “The murder of Babulal Vaishnav in Sapotara, Karauli, is extremely unfortunate and condemnable; civil society has no place for such acts. The state government is with the bereaved family in this sad time. The main accused has been arrested and action continues. The culprits shall not be spared.”
Congress party’s chief whip Mahesh Joshi said, “I have spoken to the DGP; the family will be provided security and their demands will be discussed.” He said he would write a letter to the chief minister to demand strict action against land encroachers.