Updated: April 2, 2018 4:30:50 am
Three days after a Dalit youth was hacked to death allegedly for riding a horse in Timbi village of Bhavnagar, police on Sunday said that there was no breakthrough in the case even as they continued to question six persons in connection with the murder.
“We have detained six persons and are questioning them. While the FIR does name one person as an accused, we are collecting evidence against the accused in order to arrest him. We are analysing call detail records and trying to ascertain their location at the time of the murder. But so far, there has been no breakthrough in the investigation and nobody has been arrested,” Abdulrafiq Saiyad, Deputy Superintendent of Police (SC-SC Cell) of Bhavnagar, who is investigating the case, said.
Pradeep Rathod (21) was allegedly hacked to death near his village on Thursday evening. In his complaint, the victim’s father had alleged that his son was killed by upper caste men from Timbi and nearby Piprali village as they could not withstand Pradeep, a Dalit, owning and riding a horse. He has also alleged that the accused had threatened to kill Pradeep and had named Natubha Darbar and others as accused.
Police had detained Natubha Darbar within hours after the murder. Goghubha Gohil and Jitubha Gohil, who are brothers and residents of nearby Piprali village, were detained the next day.
The Deputy SP said that three more persons had been detained on Saturday. “We are questioning them to verify certain facts, and after we find substantial grounds to make their arrests, we shall formally arrest them,” added Saiyad.
Meanwhile, Dalit activists alleged the police was taking the probe in the wrong direction. “Police are alleging that Pradeep used to perform stunts on horseback whenever he encountered girls, and are therefore questioning his character. But as a matter of fact, there never was any police complaint or application against him. Police have no evidence whatsoever of his alleged misconduct but are still giving such statements to media. Such statements seems to protect the accused,” said Aravind Makwana of Navsarjan Trust.
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