One of the four police officials, who was arrested in the 2016 public flogging of a Dalit family in Una of Gir-Somnath district, has died of jaundice at a hospital in Ahmedabad a few days back. N U Jhala was the police inspector of Una police station under whose jurisdiction the incident took place and who was under suspension for dereliction of duty.
Superintendent of Police, Gir-Somnath district, Hitesh Joysar confirmed the development. “Yes, he died day before yesterday at a hospital in Ahmedabad where his family stays. He was suffering from jaundice and died after remaining comatose for two days.”
On July 11, seven members of a Dalit family from Mota Samadhiyala village of the Una taluka district were publicly flogged for skinning a dead cow by self-proclaimed gau rakshaks. The incident prompted a huge Dalit agitation across the state, following which the investigation was handed over to the CID (Crime).
The incident also highlighted a major lacuna on the part of local Una police which allegedly facilitated the accused. Immediately, an inquiry was ordered following which four police officials, including Jhala, were suspended by the state authorities. Subsequent probe in the case by CID (Crime) exposed an even more serious role allegedly played by the four police officials. In its chargesheet against the police officials, CID (Crime) accused them of even fudging facts in the official records following the incident.
Currently, the criminal proceedings in the case are being held at a sessions court in Una. Out of the 43 persons facing trial in the case, 32 were released on bail by different courts. This includes Jhala and three other policemen.
The three other policemen in the case include Hardevsinh Parmar, Kanji Chudasama and Kanchanben Parmar.