An FIR was lodged on Sunday against three Muslim barbers in the Peepalsana village in Moradabad district after Dalit residents alleged that they refused to cut their hair.
The three barbers — Riyaz Alam, Ishaq and Jahid — were booked under IPC and the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.
According to 45-year-old Mahesh Chandra, he filed a complaint to stop caste-based discrimination. “This has been going on for several years, but now we have decided to raise our voice,” he said.
Mahesh also said that after he filed a complaint, police held a meeting in the village. “In the meeting, barbers agreed that they would cut the hair of Dalits. But after police mediation, barbers shut their shops for three days,” he said.
There are around 20 barber shops in the village, all run by Muslims. According to Circle Officer of Thakurdwara (Moradabad), Vishal Yadav, barbers claimed that they closed shops to decide on their next step. Jahid, who has been named in the FIR, said, “I have never refused any customer. False allegations have been made against me.”
(With ENS, Delhi)