Five members who claimed to be from a right-wing Hindu outfit have been booked for allegedly assaulting and robbing a Dalit family in Belagavi, a district in Karnataka- Maharashtra border.
On December 29, Akshay Kumar Karaganvi, a pastor, was organising annual prayers at his residence, when seven members of a right-wing outfit allegedly entered his house and interrupted the prayers.
Claiming that the family was involved in conversions, the neighbours allegedly thrashed the family. Kavita, Kumar’s wife, who filed a complaint, said a woman, Bharati Vyapari, sustained burn injuries in the attack.
Ghataprabha police have registered a case under 326 (causing grievous hurt by dangerous means, 354 (outraging the modesty of women) and 392 (robbery) and sections of SC/ST (prevention of atrocities) Act. However, they are yet to make any arrests.
In her complaint, Kavita said the accused came with an intention to disrupt the prayers and threw hot curry at Bharati, leaving her injured. She added that the prayers were held as part of an annual ritual after Christmas and denied allegations of conversion, said police.
Similar incidents have been reported in parts of Karnataka in the past, especially after the state government passed an Anti-conversion Bill in assembly during winter session. However, it is yet to be passed in the Upper House.
In another incident in Tumakuru district recently, women allegedly fought against members of a Hindutwa group, who entered their house alleging conversion. However, no complaint was reported.
In Mandya, Hindutva groups allegedly attacked a school in the district demanding teachers to stop Christmas festivities claiming that they were influencing children towards Christianity.