Complaint filed against 12 ‘upper caste’ people

Tears rolled down Gowramma’s cheeks as she narrated how her husband, a Dalit, was beaten up and threatened with dire consequences allegedly by “upper caste” people for refusing to continue with the traditional profession of their community.

Her husband, Rangaswamy (38), a daily wage worker, has been admitted to the government hospital at Channarayapatna after he was beaten up at Baddikere in Channarayapatna taluk on December 17.

“They ripped his clothes off, tied him up to a pole and beat him up severely. They also threatened to harm our two school-going daughters if he refused to obey their orders,” Ms. Gowramma told The Hindu here on Thursday.

“All this began after he refused to go around the village beating a drum to inform the residents about a village festival scheduled for next week. A few people came to our home in an autorickshaw around 10.30 a.m. on December 17 and took him away. I ran behind the auto only to find my husband being beaten up,” she said.

Ms. Gowramma said the “upper caste” people did not listen to her pleas. “They threatened to harm our daughters if the police was informed about the incident,” she said.

Their relatives, Murthy and Kumar, rushed to the spot to rescue him. Mr. Murthy told The Hindu that the “upper caste” people continued to assault Mr. Rangaswamy in their presence. “They were about 200 people and we only two. They abused us and threatened us with dire consequences if we did not obey their orders,” he said.

No arrests yet

Mr. Rangaswamy’s family has filed a complaint against 12 people at the Nuggehalli police station. A first information report (FIR) was registered under the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act on December 18. However, no arrests have been made yet. The Nuggehalli police said four teams had been constituted to arrest the accused.

The Hassan district unit of the Karnataka Dalit Sangharsh Samiti staged a protest outside the Deputy Commissioner’s office here demanding immediate arrest of the accused in the case.

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