As many as six members of a Dalit family at a village in Bhachau taluka of Gandhidham city of Kutch were allegedly assaulted by a group of 20 persons, three days ago, following which police have detained five accused in the matter by Friday evening.
The injured persons have claimed that they were systematically targeted after they entered Ram temple in the village during a ceremony organised by another community in the temple. Police said they are probing the allegations made by the victims.
Police said that the six persons have been admitted to Civil Hospital in Bhuj of Kutch following the attack in which they received injuries on their heads and other parts by sharp weapons.
According to police, two attack incidents occurred on October 26 morning at Ner village under Bhachau taluka in which a group of 20 persons first allegedly ransacked the farmland of the the Dalit family by letting cattle graze through it and then entered their house to assault them.
In the first incident, Govind Vaghela (39) has claimed that he got to know around 10 am on October 26 that cattle had entered his farmland in the village.
“I left in an auto rickshaw with my uncle Ganesh Vaghela. Upon reaching my farmland, I saw that the crops have been ransacked and a group of men were waiting underneath a tree, holding axes, sticks, rods in their hands. Led by the accused Kana Ahir of my village, they started assaulting us with the weapons,” said Govind Vaghela in his complaint.
“They asked us as to why did we enter the Ram temple on October 20 when a ‘pratishthan’ ceremony was going on. They stole my cell phone and attacked the autorickshaw so that we couldn’t seek help and told me that they are going to the village to kill my father. My uncle and I received injuries on our heads and limbs and we were finally rescued by the police who took us to the hospital,” Govind added.
According to police, around 11:30 am, the group of 20 accused then reached the house of Jagabhai Vaghela (64), father of Govind and assaulted him, his wife Baddhiben Vaghela, son Bhura Vaghela and nephew Hasmukh Vaghela.
“The accused used casteist slurs… and we were hit on our head and limbs by the accused resulting in excessive bleeding,” said Jagabhai Vaghela.
Taking cognizance, two FIRs were lodged against 20 accused identified as Kana Ahir, Jeeva Ahir, Vela Ahir, Kesra Rabari, Arjan Rabari, Dinesh Balasara, Rajesh Balasara, Rana Balasara, Dinesh Ramji Balasara, Naya Ahir, Kana Koli, Bhanji Suthar , Rajesh Maraj, Dinesh Maraj, Paba Rabari, Chauda Koli, Sava Koli, Momaya Koli, Hema Rabari and Navgan Rabari under IPC sections 307 for attempt to murder, 323 for causing hurt, 324 for causing hurt by dangerous weapons, 452 for house tresspass for causing hurt, 120b for criminal conspiracy, 506 for criminal intimidation, 294b for obsceniy, sections of the rioting and sections of the scheduled caste and scheduled tribe (prevention of atrocities) act.
Kishorsinh Zala, deputy superintendent of police, Bhachau said, “We have detained five out of 20 accused and their covid test formalities are going on. A total of eight teams have been formed to nab the remaining accused…”
c. The Indian Express