Uttarakhand: 'Upper caste' in-laws murder Dalit man days after wedding
Days after marrying an 'upper caste' woman against her family's wish, a Dalit man was bludgeoned to death allegedly by his in-laws in Almora district of Uttarakhand on Thursday. Police arrested the woman's mother, stepfather, and stepbrother while they were trying to dispose of the body. The couple had demanded security from the police on August 27 claiming a threat to their lives.
The couple got married 10 days before murder
Deceased Jagdish Chandra, a native of Panuadhokhan village, unsuccessfully contested in the 2022 state elections from the Salt constituency on a ticket from Uttarakhand Parivartan Party. The woman's parents, hailing from the Rajput community, had separated and she had been living with her mother, stepfather, and stepbrother since. The couple got married in a temple on August 21 and then went to Almora.
Victim was kidnapped, murdered
On Thursday, Chandra went to Bhikiasain for some work and was kidnapped the same day. DIG (Kumaon range) Nilesh Bharney said the accused were caught around 8-10 km away from Bhikiasain. The body was found with 25 wounds that appeared to be from a blunt object. The body was sent to Almora for postmortem. The weapon used for murder is yet to be recovered.
'Had administration heeded the plaint, he could've been saved'
On the question of the couple demanding security, DIG Bharney said that the police were "aware of the matter". Uttarakhand Parivartan Party leader PC Tiwari said that Chandra could have been saved if the administration had acted on the complaint seriously. He called the murder shameful and demanded compensation of Rs. 1 crore and a job for the deceased's wife.
Other incidents of caste-based murder in the state
Last week in Haldwani district of the state, a youth along with his friend allegedly killed his girlfriend, who hailed from the Dalit community, after she had been pressurizing him to marry. In another incident from Champawat district in December 2021, a man was allegedly beaten to death at a wedding function for having food with everyone instead of eating separately.