FOUR DAYS after the death of a Dalit labourer who was brutally assaulted and forced to drink urine, his body was cremated under thick security cover in his native village Changaliwala in Sangrur district, Tuesday.
Punjab Cabinet Minister Vijayinder Singla handed over a Rs 6 lakh cheque to Jagmale Singh’s (37) widow Manjeet Kaur before the cremation. The remaining amount will be given to the family after the bhog ceremony.
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On Monday, Jagmale Singh’s family had ended their protest after the Punjab government offered Rs 20 lakh compensation, a government job to his wife and free education to his three children.
The state government had also announced a probe into the case by an additional director general of police rank officer, besides ensuring filling of challan against the four accused in court within seven days.
The family had earlier refused both — to take his body and allow post-mortem — till their demand of Rs 50 lakh compensation and a government job for his wife were met.
Meanwhile all four accused — Amarjeet Singh, his son Rinku, Binder and Lucky — will be in police remand till Thursday, said Sangrur SSP Dr Sandeep Garg.
Cabinet minister Singla said, “Challan will be presented in court within a week and we will try to get the culprits punished within three months of filing challan in the court.”
Speaking to The Indian Express, Dr Garg said, “Rods used in the crime and the rope with which Jagmale was tied up have been taken into police custody. Accused have said that because Jagmale was abusive to them, they had beaten him up to settle scores.”
Zamin Prapati Sangrash Committee members are alleging that the accused had tortured labourers in the past as well. Dr Raj Kumar Verka, Congress MLA from Amritsar West, had also said that a few villagers had told him the same. However, the Sangrur SSP said, “We did not get to know about any past history of the accused. As of now we are concentrating on the present case.”
On October 21, the victim had got into an altercation with Rinku and others. The dispute was resolved with the intervention of villagers, police said.
Before his death, the victim had told police that on November 7, Rinku called him to his house where the two talked about the issue. He had alleged that he was then brutally thrashed by four persons with a stick and an iron rod after being tied to a pillar and acid was poured into the wounds carved on his leg with a screwdriver. He had alleged that he was forced to drink urine when he asked for water.
After his condition deteriorated, his family shifted him to PGIMER, where his legs were amputated. He, however, died on Saturday.