Dalit boy found dead in Haryana after ‘stealing pigeon’

New Delhi: Days after two Dalit children were burnt alive allegedly by members of an upper caste community in Haryana’s Sun Perh village, a 14-year-old Dalit boy was found hanging near his house with wounds all over his body in the state on Thursday after being detained by police over the alleged theft of a pigeon.

Demanding action against the accused policemen and a compensation of Rs 10 lakh, Govind’s family and several others are sitting with his body on a road near their village in Sonepat district.

“Govind was charged with the theft of a pigeon by local people and then brutally thrashed by police for being a Dalit,” a member of his family reportedly said.

The police, however, claim Govind ran away and committed suicide, but a post mortem has confirmed injuries.

Govind was allegedly questioned by police on Wednesday and when his mother went to the police station to inquire about him, the policemen allegedly sought bribes. However, when she returned with the money, she was allegedly told that Govind had escaped.

“My son went to the police station himself, nothing was proved against him. The policemen asked for Rs. 5,000 from my son. He agreed but then they made a demand of 10,000 rupees,” Govind’s mother said on Friday.

While speaking to media persons, Govind’s brother said: “If someone runs away from police custody, what is the point of the police being there? In the morning, we found his dead body. They took our money and killed him.”

This comes two days after two Dalit children, two-year-old Vaibhav and nine-month-old Divya, were allegedly burnt alive by members of an upper caste community in Haryana’s Sun Perh village.

A police spokesman said, “Some criminals burnt a Jatav family of village Sun Perh, police station Sadar Ballabhgarh of Faridabad district when they were sleeping inside their house. Four members including Jitender, his wife Rekha and two small children namely Vaibhav (son) aged 2 years and Divya (daughter) aged 9 months were inside the room. Subsequently, the fire spread inside the room and both the children expired. Jitender and his wife Rekha also sustained burn injuries.”

Union Minister V K Singh on Thursday stoked a controversy while blaming a family feud for the burning alive of two Dalit children in Haryana and drew an analogy that if someone throws stones at a dog, the government is not responsible.

“If someone throws stones at a dog, the government is not responsible. It was a feud between two families, the matter is under inquiry,” Singh told reporters.

Singh’s statement was widely condemned, forcing him to offer a clarification that he was ‘misquoted’ by media.