Two Dalits beaten to death in Rajasthan, one of them for protesting loud music on Holi

While Neeraj Jatav (16) was killed in Alwar following an argument over loud music being played during Holi celebrations on Friday, Jaswant Jatav (24) was murdered in Bharatpur over an old enmity

jaipur Updated: Mar 03, 2018 21:20 IST
Devendra Bhardwaj and Suresh Foujdar
Devendra Bhardwaj and Suresh Foujdar
Hindustan Times, Jaipur
Crime,Dalit murder,Bharatpur
One of the victims is a minor.(AFP File)

Two Dalits, including a teenage boy, were beaten to death in separate incidents in Rajasthan’s Bharatpur and Alwar district, officials said Saturday.

While Neeraj Jatav (16) was killed in Alwar following an argument over loud music being played during Holi celebrations on Friday, Jaswant Jatav (24) was murdered in Bharatpur over an old enmity.

Alwar police said that Neeraj had objected to the loud music being played by some people in Bhiwadi village. Angered, the men assaulted Neeraj and his friends resulting in the teenager’s death, said Vikrant Sharma, Bhiwadi station house officer (SHO).

The victim’s father, however, said that Neeraj was only standing near the place where the music was being played. “Two men came and started abusing my son, making casteist remarks and asking why he was standing there. They then started beating my son, but some people intervened and saved him,” said Babu Lal Jatav, a driver by profession.

The men then threatened his son and left, he added. “Later, while Neeraj was playing Holi with his friends at another place, some 15-16 people arrived there in a car and 2-3 motorcycles and started beating my son with hockey sticks,” said Babu, adding that his son died at the spot.

Police took Neeraj to the hospital where he was declared dead. His body was handed over to the family on Saturday after the post mortem.

Neeraj was studying in Class 9 and wanted to become a lawyer, his father said. “We kept Neeraj’s body on the road in protest, but some 6-7 persons arrived there and kicked the body. They also threatened us against taking any legal action,” he added.

The police lodged a case against six named people – most of them from the dominant Gurjar community – and other unknown persons for murder, voluntarily causing hurt, wrongful restraint and under sections of the SC/ST Act. Five of the six named by Babu in the complaint have been arrested by the police, the SHO said.

In Bharatpur, Jaswant Jatav had an argument with some men late on Friday evening in Nagla Jeewna village.

His cousin, Ajay Jatav, said that Jaswant had an old dispute with the men, who were from a nearby village. During argument, they falsely accused Jaswant of stealing. “They wanted an excuse to beat him,” said Ajay.

The victim’s father said that while Jaswant was returning home, the men caught up with him and assaulted him. “They abducted him in a car and later left his body outside the district hospital,” said Mangilal Jatav.

Kumher SHO Sitaram Meena said that a case for murder has been registered against 5-6 people including Rambabu Jatav, the sarpanch of Nagla Santaa village, but any arrest is yet to be made.

Jaswant’s body was handed over to his kin after post mortem. Family members, along with locals, blocked the Bharatpur-Deeg highway and cleared it only after assurance of immediate action from the police.

First Published: Mar 03, 2018 21:19 IST