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Dalit Man Flogged to Death Over Suspicion of Theft in Gujarat, 5 Factory Workers Arrested

The 40-year-old ragpicker was collecting trash in an industrial area when he reportedly got into an argument with workers from a nearby factory.

Updated:May 21, 2018, 3:31 PM IST
Gandhinagar: A 35-year-old Dalit ragpicker was tied up to a door and beaten to death in Shapar-Veraval industrial area of Rajkot district on Sunday allegedly by five employees of a nearby factory over suspicion of theft.

Police launched an investigation and arrested all five accused after a video of the assault on 40-year-old Mukesh Savji Vaniya went viral.

The police registered a case under Section 302 (murder) of the Indian Penal Code and the Scheduled Castes & Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act after the victim’s wife filed a complaint. Two men have also been reportedly detained in connection with the case.

The incident took place on Sunday morning when Vaniya, his wife Jayaben and a relative named Savitaben were collecting scrap metal near Radadia Factory in Shapar-Veraval area. Some men from the factory rushed out and accused the trio of theft. The men allegedly thrashed the victims with sticks, following which they drove the women away, tied up Vaniya to a shed door and flogged him with rods and sticks.

Vaniya relatives arrived at the scene soon and took him to hospital, where he was declared dead on admission. His wife Jayaben is admitted to the Rajkot Civil Hospital with grievous injuries.

Speaking to News18, Rajkot Deputy SP Shruti Mehta, who is supervising investigation in the case, said, “Based on the footage available and the records, all the persons who were involved in the crime have been arrested by the police. If investigation reveals other names, we will take action against those persons as well.”

Independent MLA from Vadgam, Jignesh Mevani, who shared the video on his Twitter wall with the hashtag #GujaratisNotSafeForDalit, said the video represents the “so-called Vikas model”.

The incident serves as a reminder of the Una flogging case of July 2016, wherein four Dalits were beaten to death after being falsely accused of cow slaughter.

| Edited by: Nitya Thirumalai
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