ON MONDAY afternoon, Jallaram Jatav, 53, a resident of Jadoli village in Alwar district of Rajasthan, was told that his son Pawan Kumar, 27, had met with an accident. He rushed to the spot in Khairthal, in Alwar district of Rajasthan, where he found Kumar lying unconscious. According to Jatav, he had been shot in the head. Kumar was rushed to a hospital, where he was declared dead. Khairthal was one of the areas hit by violence on Monday, as protesters reportedly torched parts of the police station.
“My son had gone to Khairthal to meet his brother-in-law. I didn’t know that he was going to participate in the rally… The police deliberately opened fire on him. The protests were going on peacefully,” said Jatav, who is a member of the Umrain Panchayat Samiti.
Jatav said Kumar, his youngest child, wanted to become a lecturer. “He had an M.Com degree and had also completed his B.Ed. He was preparing for competitive exams to get a lecturer’s job,” he said. “He got married last year and his wife is also preparing for similar exams,” said Jatav.
“Eyewitnesses told me that after shooting my son, the police set fire to their own vehicles,” alleged Jatav. Several vehicles at the police station were allegedly charred in the violence. “I and my wife used to live with Kumar and his wife,” said Jatav, who has three other children.
Additional Superintendent of Police, Alwar, Mool Singh Rana said the police fired in self-defence after the mob attacked them. “A deputy superintendent of police suffered serious head injuries as he was attacked by the mob. Police personnel were cornered and had to open fire because there was no other option,” he said.