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A Dalit Woman Raped Dugani Devi

  • Posted by: NDMJ-Bihar
  • Date of incident: 16-04-2002
  • Create date: 22-03-2014
  • State:: Bihar
  • District:: JAMUI
  • Police station:: Jhajha
  • Chargesheet:: No F.I.R, No Chargesheet
  • Summary::

    Dugani Devi (Chamar, 25 years) was married to Raju Das at the age of 12 years.  Raju Das was 11 years older and had passed 10th standard.  Dugani Devi had never attended school and remains illiterate. With Raju Das, Dugani Devi gave birth to three boys and one girl: Paramanand Das (12 years), Rinki Kumari (8 years), Dinesh Kumar (5 years), and Umesh Kumar (2 years). Dugani currently lives with her four children and mother-in-law Nakati Devi in a small mud hut in Naukasar village, Jhajha block, Jammui district, Bihar. Raju Das stays in Delhi.

     

    Dugani and her in-laws own about ½ acre of land.  The land is in the name of Dugani’s father-in-law. In order to eke out a livelihood, Dugani Devi formerly collected dattun sticks (for teeth cleaning) from the forest and sold them in the village. After she began having children, Dugani stopped selling dattun and remained at home. Her mother-in-law took up dattun sales to compensate for the loss of income. Later, Dugani resumed work, but as a daily wage agricultural labourer. As a seasonal agricultural labourer in the fields of dominant caste landlords, Dugani Devi earns Rs.30/- per day when work is available. Dugani’s husband Raju Das has a younger brother Thanu Das (24 years), who operates an armed “naxalite” gang in the jungle. According to his family members, Thanu Das began to be involved with petty thieves at the age of 12 years, under the influence of a cousin.  Even though he rarely actually committed burglary with the gang, he became known to the local law authorities, and the police began to pick him up whenever any crime was committed. After the police several times visited his house in this manner, Thanu’s family began reprimanding him for his behaviour.  One day after a scolding, Thanu Das left his house saying that he would never return. 

     

    In Naukasar village and the surrounding region, Dalits endure extreme forms of exploitation and oppression from the dominant caste, landowning Yadavs (BC Ahirs). In a number of instances, groups of Yadav men forcibly entered Dalit homes at will and raped or gang raped Dalit women and girls. The Dalits are so economically dependent and the Yadavs so politically powerful that the Dalits largely remain silent about these atrocities. When Thanu Das reappeared in the region several years after his sudden departure from home, he came as the leader of his own armed gang, residing in the jungle and challenging the dominant caste Yadavs for their atrocities against Dalits. Thanu Das’s gang is not formally linked to the naxalite group MCC (Maoist Communist Centre), but police consider Thanu Das’s gang as in effect a naxalite outfit. Once Thanu’s gang became active in the region, the police began harassing the Dalit community of Naukasar, particularly Thanu’s family, and accusing them of sheltering the gang leader. On numerous occasions, local police picked up Dugani’s husband Raju Das as a means of forcing Thanu Das to turn himself in. Harassed and terrorised by the police, Raju Das ultimately decided to flee the village and immigrate to Delhi, where he ultimately found work in a factory. Due to fear of police harassment, Raju Das rarely visits Naukasar.

     

    In April 2002, the son of a Marwari businessman was kidnapped from the area. Suspecting Thanu Das, the police came to Dugani Devi’s home in search of him.  In the evening Dugani Devi was at home with her niece (sister’s daughter) Sindhu Devi, who is a young widow.  Dugani’s children were studying in the hut’s main room. There was no one else at home at the time.  About 10 police officers arrived at about 9:00 p.m., disembarked from their jeeps, and immediately entered Dugani Devi’s hut and began searching the rooms of the hut.  Dugani Devi stood in the courtyard with her niece.  Dugani says, “I was too terrified to speak up.  I did not dare to go inside to see what they were doing in the rooms.” When they did not find Thanu Das, the police left again.  Dugani Devi rushed to her children to find them scared but unmolested.  The police had ransacked the hut and arbitrarily confiscated a number of the family’s precious belongings; including cooking utensils and a new sari that Dugani’s mother had given her. At 8:00 a.m. the following morning, two police jeeps again arrived in front of Dugani Devi’s home and 11 police personnel entered the hut.  The police were from Chandar Police Station. One police officer– whose name, caste and position Dugani Devi did not learn –came by a different vehicle from Simultalla Police Station. He began to question Dugani Devi regarding Thanu Das.  When Dugani insisted that she had no knowledge of his whereabouts, the officer verbally abused her, saying, “Illegitimate cunt! He brings money and gives it to you. You are eating the food he provides and you say you don’t know him!”

     

    The police then threatened Dugani Devi, saying, “We will shove a bamboo rod in your cunt!  We will force a rifle up your cunt!” The police also forcibly seized hold of Sindhu Devi, claiming that she was Thanu Das’s wife.  In fact, Thanu Das is unmarried. When Sindhu Devi screamed loudly, the police let go of her.  Finally the police left Dugani Devi and her niece, threatening them by saying, “If you do not bring us Thanu Das, then we will take you away.  We’ll put a burning fire in your cunt!  We’ll break your bones!” Later the same day, at 6:00 p.m., again a police jeep from Simultalla Station arrived in front of Dugani Devi’s home. At this time, Dugani Devi was at home alone with her children. Eight police personnel, including one female constable, approached Dugani Devi. They said, “The Superintendent of Police has asked us to take you to Jhajha Police Station. Then Thanu Das will come by himself to the police.” The Superintendent of Police for Jammui at the time was Barauiddin Ahmad (Muslim). Dugani pleaded, “But I do not know anything about him [Thanu Das].”  The police ignored her and told her to get into the jeep.  Worried about what would happen to her children if she left them alone at home, Dugani Devi insisted on bringing her four children with her. Other people in the Dalit colony watched as Dugani Devi and her small children were put into the police jeep and driven away. Dugani says, “No one in my village spoke a word to the police, due to fear.”

     

    Dugani Devi learned later that on the same day that the police picked her up, the Jhajha Police Station’s Station Officer Surendar Paswan, a Dalit, had been transferred and replaced by V.P. Singh, a dominant caste Rajput. The police took her to the train station, from which two male and one female constable accompanied her and her children to Jhajha Police Station. Dugani Devi did not know the constables’ names or castes. It was 8:00 p.m. when they arrived in Jhajha. The police led Dugani Devi and her children into a room built like a large hall and locked it from the outside.  In the ensuing hours, Dugani’s children began to cry due to hunger and thirst. The police standing guard shouted at Dugani and her children, telling them to keep quiet, and did not feed them. Dugani and her children remained locked up and alone that night. The next day, four police officers – two of whom were Yadavs (BC Ahir) and two of whom were other non-Dalits – took Dugani Devi from the cell to another small room, saying they needed to make inquiries. Dugani Devi did not learn the four officers’ names. Instead of conducting an interrogation, the four officers forcibly stripped Dugani Devi and gang raped her. Dugani Devi fought and protested, but the officers physically overpowered her and raped her, one after another. During the rape, the officers used extremely degrading language to insult Dugani.

     

    After the gang rape, Dugani Devi was returned to the cell with her children.  Later in the day, however, she was again called out and again gang raped by the same four officers.  During the night, too, she was brought to another room and gang raped. For three days and three nights, Dugani Devi was kept in police custody.  She lost track of how many times she was taken from one room to another and gang raped by the police. On the fourth day, Dugani Devi was brought before Station Officer V.P. Singh.  He said to her, “Bring me a guarantor for your bail, and then we will release you.”  He then had a message to the same effect sent to Dugani Devi’s home. When Dugani’s family received the message, her sister and father-in-law immediately came to the police station. The police pressurised Dugani’s father in-law to give his thumb print as signature on a blank piece of paper. After that, at about 11:00 a.m., Dugani and her children were released. Due to fear and shame, Dugani kept silent about what had happened in the police station. Ten days after her release from Jhajha police station, Dugani’s husband Raju Das returned from Delhi. In private, Dugani told her husband everything that the police had done to her in the police station. She told him because she feared that otherwise, he might learn of the gang rapes through some other channel and might misunderstand that she was to blame. Raju Das took Dugani Devi and their children with him to Delhi in the hope of escaping more violence from the Bihar police. As a result of the violence, Dugani Devi suffered vaginal and body pain for several months.  She took medication for one month.   

     

    For the next two years, Dugani Devi lived in Delhi with her husband and children.  In April 2004, police again came to Dugani’s home in the village, looking for her.  She was in Delhi and heard about the police visit afterward.  In July 2004, her father-in-law learned that she had been gang raped by the police for three days, and died from the shock.  Raju Das and Dugani Devi had to return to the village to complete Dugani’s father-in-law’s funeral rites.  As soon as the rites were completed, Raju returned to Delhi.  Dugani and the children remained to take care of her mother-in-law. Dugani Devi and her husband Raju Das both felt that because the police themselves were the perpetrators of the atrocity, it would be fruitless to seek justice through the police.  Dugani says, “Who will take this case?”

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Rape of a Dalit Woman Lalsot

  • Posted by: Centre for Dalit Rights
  • Date of incident: 03-02-2002
  • Create date: 21-03-2014
  • State:: Rajasthan
  • District:: DAUSA
  • Police station:: Lalsot
  • Chargesheet:: 05.02.02, No. 48/02, u/s 376 IPC & 3(1)(xii) of SC/ST (PoA) Act. Chargesheet Filed
  • Summary::

    Tara Devi and husband Girraj have been living in the Diggo village since two years after marriage. On February 3, 2002 Tara Devi was going to her home carrying some fire wood on her head.  Meanwhile around 4 O’ clock when Tara Devi arrived near Khura (a place), where Chatrya Ram, the accused, rushed toward Tara Devi and started doing some vulgar acts. Tara covered her face with her Chunar to avoid. He asked Tara Devi that who permitted her to take firewood from there; Tara Devi did not reply; Chatrya pulled the fire woods down from her. He came there with ill intention, caught Tara and pushed her over the land, Tara started shouting but Chatrya clutched Tara’s mouth with hand, stripped her clothes & raped her. After committing rape Chatrya left her and threatened her to keep quiet or be killed otherwise. Chatrya ran away from there. Tara Devi started crying, Listening her cries, her sister in-law and two other villagers namely Dhanpal & Bajju Meena went to the spot. Tara went home with them and told her in- laws about the whole incident.

     

    Next day of the incident, Tara Devi went to register FIR against the accused but the local police especially SHO namely Sukh Ram Gurjar did not register her FIR to help the accused as they were from the same community. After a very long struggle Tara and her family were able to register the FIR after three days from the day of incident but the Police registered her FIR very moderately. Later on, the local police sent Tara Devi for her medical examination. Her statement under section 164 of Cr.P.C was recorded on February 12, 2002.

     

    Soon after registering FIR and medical examination, it was the duty of District Collector to grant Rs 25000/- as interim monetary relief to Tara Devi but this was not followed by the administration and they didn’t grant her any monetary relief. Although later on after 7 months compensation of Rs. 1, 00,000 was granted to Tara Devi. The case was ended with conviction.

     

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Outrage of modesty of dalit women

  • Posted by: Dalit Dasta Virodhi Andolan
  • Date of incident: 16-12-2001
  • Create date: 02-03-2014
  • State:: Punjab
  • District:: SHAHID BHAGAT SINGH NAGAR
  • Police station:: Banga
  • Chargesheet:: No F.I.R.
  • Summary:: Bimla Devi W/o Hussan, Village- Surapur Tehsil- Nawanshehar District- Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar. She belongs to Ad-Dharmi Caste which has been declared as a Scheduled Caste by the Govt of Punjab. Bimla Devi is the Sarpanch of her village. She is running a Grocery shop and STD/PCO in her village. On 16.12.2001 at about 6 p.m, accused in a drunk and accompanied by 4-5 other persons came to the shop of victim in Tata Sumo vehicle and started that giving filthy abuses against the community of the victim. At that time Dalbara Singh, Ronaki Ram & Charanjit Kaur are present at her shop for buy some things. Bimla Devi has worn the accused. Dev Singh caught the victim from her breast and other accused removes her clothes. Dalbara Singh, Ronaki Ram & Charanjit Kaur helped the victim. So she could manage to release from grip of the accused. Avtar Singh and Kewal Singh respectively attempted to outrage the modesty of Bimla Devi. The case is still pending.

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Harassment and Torture of Dalits for Access to Public Resources

  • Posted by: Centre for Dalit Rights
  • Date of incident: 14-12-2001
  • Create date: 20-03-2014
  • State:: Rajasthan
  • District:: JAIPUR (R)
  • Police station:: Phagi
  • Chargesheet:: Chargesheet Filed
  • Summary::

    The Chakwara Panchayat has a small public pond, which is used by people of all communities. The Dalits could use only their community Ghats. The Ganesh Ghat was made only for members of the Upper Caste; the said Ghat has deep water. The water level in Dalit community is very low. On 14/12/2001, Babulal Bairwa took bath in the Ganesh Ghat. The villagers and persons who advocated Manu system and Brahmin system along with five patels on behalf of all the three Upper Caste people have punished Babulal Bairwa and Bairwa Community as a whole by imposing a fine of Rs. 51000/-. Members of the Dominant Caste threatened Bairwa with social boycott if he defaults in paying the fine amount. Bairawa was making enormous efforts to weaken the traditional system. On hearing from Bairawa, the Phagi Police registered an FIR, however, even after 6 months; the people of Bairawa community received no communication. As a greater impact, human excreta were thrown into the Dalits\\\' well five times in the Village Kansel that comes under Fagi Police Station by members of the Dominant Caste. The local police submitted the final report before the Court. The Special SC/ ST Court Jaipur also acquitted all the perpetrators. Currently a Criminal Revision Petition is pending before the Rajasthan High Court, Jaipur.  

     

    People of the Bairwa community approached the Dalit Human Rights Centre at Jaipur. It was decided to take a walking procession under the title \\\"Sadbhavna Yatra\\\" (Community Harmony) from the place Chakus to Chakwara (Roughly 60 Km.) on 20th and 21st September 2002. People of all communities and religions participated in the yatra. However, when the procession went through the localities inhabited by the Jats and other dominant caste people, they avoided it. In Chakwada and neighboring places members of the three Dominant Castes of Jaipur District labeled the Sadbavana Yatra as Dalit Rally. To disturb the procession, people of non-Dalit communities were called to strike. On 20th September 2002, the yatra was given reception at only one village. However on 21st September 2002, some 15-20 thousand people had assembled in a crowd, who were anti-yatra people. The protest rally was about 6Km. with slogans against Dalit communities. They were having weapons of all kinds and the situation was bad till 10 O\\\'clock in the morning. The yatra was called off by 10 or 11 O\\\'clock. The Police announced that the yatra has come to end; they ordered the crowd to disperse. On account of their disobedience, to scatter the crowd the Police applied mild force with blank fires. This incident happened in presence of police force as well as all important government officials including District Collector, Superintendent of Police. Some Police personnel were injured during the incident. On account of the procession, members of the Dominant Caste instructed members of the Bairawa community not to use public water places.

     

    On hearing from Babulal Bairwa, Phagi Police registered an F.I.R. accusing 17 members of the three higher communities. Even after 6 months, the people of Bairwa community did not receive any kind of communication from the police authorities. The authorities tried to settle the matter outside court. Members of the Bairwa community at Chakwada approached the Dalit Human Rights Centre at Jaipur. It was decided to take a walking procession under the title \\\"Sadbhavna Yatra\\\" (Community Harmony) from the place Chakus to Chakwada (Roughly 60 Km.) on 20th and 21st September 2002. Members of the Dominant Caste have taken it for granted that the Dalit has disgraced the pond. Everyone in the village uses the pond, excluding members of the Dominant Caste. It is alleged that, some people throw human excreta into the pond. A permanent police post has been established in the village but the situation has not yet changed. The Rajasthan High Court dismissed the Criminal Revision Petition against the acquittal order of the perpetrators.

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A Dalit Tortured to Death on Theft Allegation

  • Posted by: Dalit Sthree Sakthi (DSS)
  • Date of incident: 31-10-2001
  • Create date: 21-03-2014
  • State:: Andhra Pradesh
  • District:: KHAMMAM
  • Police station:: Khammam
  • Chargesheet:: F.I.R registered, No Chargesheet
  • Summary::

    Tagaram Jayaram is resident of Papatapalli village, Khammam urban mandal. He had no criminal record. A gold chain of Gudi Srinivasa Rao’s (reporter in a daily newspaper) wife was stolen on 23.10.2001 while she was travelling on Vijayawada-Dornakal passenger train and the police filed a case.  When Srinivasa Rao pressurised the police for arrest of thieve, the police arrested Jayaram, beat him up severely and forced him to confess the theft.  Jayaram died in the lockup due to the police beatings. Police later confessed that a press reporter’s hand was behind the illegal confinement of Jayaram. A murder case was registered against the police, who were involved in the crime. Government gave compensation to the victim’s family. Police who were responsible for death were arrested.

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