Under threat from upper caste community in the village, eight students of Dalit families of Tejpuri village in Sabarkantha district appeared for their board examination under police security on Friday. A police vehicle took them to their examination centre and brought them back home.
On the other hand, about two dozen students of primary school have shunned their classes, while their parents are forced to go to the nearest town to buy essentials under police protection as the shops owned by upper caste would not sell them anything.
This is the scene of the village where on 6 March about 20 Dalits, including children, were assaulted by a mob of 40 to 50 people, belonging to dominant Darbar community. These Dalits were coming back from a wedding when they were attacked.
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“We were attacked because the groom rode a horse during the wedding procession. We had been warned by the upper caste people not to do so. Can’t the grooms of our caste ride a horse during wedding,” said Alpesh Solanki, a villager. He also said that due to approaching police, the people from upper castes have stopped selling them anything.
About 30 Dalit families, living in the village, are being ostracised due to FIR lodged bythe against Darbar community. So far, 14 persons have been arrested by the police while around 30 accused have left the village and are still at large.
According to Sabarkantha Superintendent of Police Chirag Koradia, after attack on March 6, there was no further disturbance in the village. He said that more than 20 policemen were posted in the village to maintain peace. Koradia added that though there was no further threat, but people from Dalit community were still apprehensive.