Other States

Original case diary in Behmai massacre missing

Judge postpones matter to Jan. 24

The case diary of the Behmai massacre, in which 20 people were killed allegedly by bandit Phoolan Devi’s gang nearly four decades ago, was found missing on Saturday when a special court was to pronounce its verdict, prompting the judge to postpone the matter to January 24.

Special judge (U.P. dacoity-affected area) Sudhir Kumar pulled up the court official for inability to produce the case diary at the time of delivering the verdict and asked him to place it before the court on January 24.

The court is likely to give its verdict on the role of the four surviving accused — Posha, Bhikha, Vishwanath and Shyambabu. While Posha is still in jail, the rest are out on bail. Three other dacoits, including Phoolan Devi’s close friend Man Singh, are absconding.

‘Bandit Queen’ Phoolan Devi, who later entered politics, and her gang members were accused of killing the 20 people belonging to the Thakur community at Behmai village in Kanpur Dehat on February 14, 1981. Phoolan Devi had stormed into Behmai in what was described as an attack to avenge her alleged rape there by two other bandits — Lala Ram and Sri Ram — both Thakurs, a dominant caste in the village. She had surrendered to the Madhya Pradesh police two years after the incident. She then went on to become a Lok Sabha member from Mirzapur for the first time in 1996 and then in 1999 on SP ticket.

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Printable version | Feb 20, 2020 6:41:53 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/original-case-diary-in-behmai-massacre-missing/article30597163.ece

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