When he was kotwar of this small village, most people knew Amon Singh Kevat because he was the first person any visiting government official would ask for.
On Tuesday, he was found dead in one corner of a small open plot that serves as a mandi (procurement centre) at Ravan village, about two km from here, waiting for his wheat to be weighed.
Aged around 65, Amon had reached the centre three days earlier and stayed put by the harvested crop, not going home even for meals, said his family members.
He was there since Saturday waiting for his turn because the centre did not have enough hammals (porters). I used to carry food for him,’’ his son Balkishan told The Indian Express.
Amon did not want to return home without money as there was a marriage in the family. “He kept requesting for the wheat to be weighed but no one listened to him,’’ alleged his brother-in-law Diwan Singh Kevat.
Corroborating the family’s allegation, Shivdayal Tiwari, a former sarpanch of a nearby village, said the influential and those ready to pay bribe get preference at the centre. However, immediately after Amon’s death, his wheat was weighed. The wheat has been packed and kept separately.
While the family is now blaming the delay in weighing the wheat and the lack of facilities at the centre for Amon’s death under the harsh sun, the district administration has called it an afterthought.
SDM (Nateran) Rakesh Sharma said Amon “came to the centre only a day before. He was 70 and suffering from some allergy. He died a natural death.’’ Sharma said there was some shortage of porters on Akshay Tritiya, but the problem was soon sorted out.
Countering the official version, the family ask why would have they sent Amon to the centre if he was unwell.