Tension Erupts in India's Uttar Pradesh After Dalit Cleaner Dies in Police Custody

© AP Photo / Saurabh DasAn Indian police officer prepares to close one of the gates at Tihar Jail, the largest complex of prisons in South Asia, in New Delhi, India, Monday, March 11, 2013
An Indian police officer prepares to close one of the gates at Tihar Jail, the largest complex of prisons in South Asia, in New Delhi, India, Monday, March 11, 2013 - Sputnik International, 1920, 20.10.2021
Subscribe
International
India
Africa
On Sunday, cash worth INR2.5 million ($33,400 approx.) was stolen from Uttar Pradesh state's Jagdishpura police station. Two days later, on Tuesday, police detained a number of local sanitation workers, including Arun Valmiki who belonged to the Dalit community.
The opposition parties in India's Uttar Pradesh state, which is gearing up for elections, have severely criticised the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) state government after a Dalit sanitation worker, named Arun Valmiki, died in police custody on Wednesday morning.
Dalits, also known as "untouchables" because other Indians consider them too lowly to communicate with, make up approximately 21 percent of Uttar Pradesh's total population of 204 million.
The criticism came as Congress party's general-secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra was prevented from meeting Valmiki's family in Agra city.
His death was also condemned by Akhilesh Yadav, the leader of the state's main opposition Samajwadi Party and former state chief.
In a tweet, the Congress party stated: "Ruling BJP is trying to kill constitutional rights of citizens, crushing the voices that demand justice."
Police arrested Arun, a sanitation worker, on Tuesday morning for allegedly stealing INR2.5 million from the police station's stockroom.
The Uttar Pradesh force claimed that they recovered some of the money from Arun, whose health deteriorated during the night for reasons as yet unspecified. He was taken to hospital, where he died.
Samajwadi Party leader Yadav demanded a strict inquiry be conducted into the police officers who were involved in the "murder".
Many activists have lambasted the BJP government and raised questions on the law and order in the state.
Members of the Valmiki (Dalit) community also converged outside the house of the victim Arun and SN Medical College, where his post-mortem was to take place.
His family members claimed that Arun was beaten up by police, which led to his death, according to a Hindi news channel ABP report.
In view of mounting tension, the local administration has deployed police as a precautionary step to maintain peace in the area.
This year, the federal Modi government said in parliament that in the past three years, a total of 348 people died in police custody in India, and 5,221 died in judicial custody. In the same time in the state of Uttar Pradesh, 23 people died in police custody, and 1,295 deaths were recorded in judicial custody.
The BJP, led by Yogi Adityanath, has held sway in Uttar Pradesh since 2017 and is set to face legislative assembly elections in early 2022.
Newsfeed
0
To participate in the discussion
log in or register
loader
Chats
Заголовок открываемого материала