Scuffle over mobile triggered caste war in Faridabad

Two children charred to death after they were allegedly set afire in their house in Ballagarh

Updated - November 16, 2021 04:21 pm IST

Published - October 21, 2015 08:23 am IST - FARIDABAD:

People gather outside the house of the Dalit family in Sun Perh village in Ballabgarh in Faridabad district on Tuesday. — PHOTOS: MANOJ KUMAR

People gather outside the house of the Dalit family in Sun Perh village in Ballabgarh in Faridabad district on Tuesday. — PHOTOS: MANOJ KUMAR

What started off as a minor altercation between two groups of teenaged boys over a mobile phone an year ago has escalated into a full-fledged bloody war between the Jatavs and the Rajputs in Sun Perh village here claiming five lives, including those of two innocent children, so far.

Recalling the incident a year ago that took three lives, sexagenarian Bijender Singh, a member of Rajput community, said that it was a casual fight between the boys of two castes when a mobile phone belonging to a boy to the upper caste fell into a drain. “The boy jokingly asked the boy from the Jatav community to pick up the phone from the drain. The Jatav boy refused and a fist-fight broke out between the two groups. Soon the older members of the two communities also got embroiled into it,” recalls Mr. Singh.

“Good sense did not prevail upon anyone and three Rajputs were brutally murdered. They were stabbed all over the body and their heads were crushed with bricks,” alleged another member of Rajput community, Dharmender, joining the conversation.

The police came, a case was registered and eleven members of the Jatav community were arrested.

The Jatavs, however, accuse the police of framing their men in a false case. “It was an internal matter of the family whose members were murdered. We had no role in it. They fought among themselves and stabbed each other. We are poor and downtrodden and were implicated,” said Rakesh, whose brother's family has now been attacked.

The Rajputs, however, said that the present attack is stage-managed. “How come eleven persons barge into the house of rival community and set them on fire like this,” said Vikas, a Rajput boy.

“The attacks on the Dalits in Haryana are not new. There have been several such instances such as the Gohana attack, Mirchpur attack, Palwal attack and so on. The Dalits have no rights in this country. We can be safe only if we convert to Islam,” says an agitated Dalit youth, Suresh.

Rakesh, another man belonging to Rajput community, however, claimed that it was a dispute between a few families of both communities and it was wrong to involve the entire village in it. “It is a Rajput-dominated village with over a thousand Rajputs and just 400 Jatavs. We have been living in harmony for hundreds of years and there has never been any such incident. Even the Rajput families involved in the dispute do not command much respect in their community. It is wrong to say that it is a dispute between the two communities; it is a fight between a couple of families of the two communities. The two communities are still living very much in harmony,” said, 40-year-old Rakesh, a Rajput.

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