The widow of a Dalit man has alleged that her husband was beaten to death by police personnel in the Koderma district of Jharkhand after he threw colored powder on an upper caste man during Holi celebrations, The Hindustan Times reported on Thursday.
Holi was celebrated on 13 March in many parts of the country.
According to the HT report, Pradeep Choudhary, 52, and a couple of other villagers sprinkled color on a local chowkidar Rajendra Yadav, who got upset at the gesture and called the police to teach them a lesson. "The police started beating up Pradeep till he fell unconscious. They then took him to the police station," Jashwa Devi, Pradeep's widow, told the newspaper.
Jashwa said that her husband's body had many bruises when the police dropped him home, the next morning. She also claimed that instead of helping them, cops at the Satbarwa police station abused them over caste.
Prabhat Khabar reported that the cops took Pradeep to the hospital after they beat him in his village, but after he revived, they took him to the police station where he was thrashed again.
Pradeep succumbed to his injuries at the Koderma Sadar hospital.
This alleged crime in Koderma district is not an isolated instance of violence against Dalits on Holi. In Patheri village in Ambala, Dalits alleged that they were attacked with sharp-edged weapons by upper caste men during Holi celebrations. Two of the ten injured men were reportedly in a critical condition. In Boh village in Ambala, a Dalit man was allegedly thrashed by upper caste men because he was giving sermons on Holi.
In 2015, a Dalit man in Sonbhadra district was tonsured and paraded through a village on suspicion of having burnt a "holika" pyre.
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