A Dalit woman died and two others from the community were critically injured when the Yadav strongmen of Khaira village under Akbarpur police station area of Nawada opened fire on them Wednesday evening as they tried to use pond water for paddy irrigation.
On Thursday, a huge crowd, led by Bhim army leader Amar Azad, took to streets with the dead body in tow. The shops and offices were forced to close in Nawada town. Azad demanded Rs 20 lakh as compensation and government job to a kin of the deceased. They cited the example of Uttar Pradesh government providing a job to the family of Vivek Tiwari, who was shot dead in Lucknow by a constable of the Uttar Pradesh police, allegedly after he refused to stop his car.
A Dalit convention by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s Janata Dal (United) in the city was also disturbed as community leaders boycotted the event. In a damage control exercise, JD(U)’s Dalit face Shyam Razak visited the hospital and family members of the deceased, but the Bhim army members booed him out accusing Nitish Kumar government of pursuing anti-Dalit policies.
Amar Azad told News18 that if perpetrators of the crime are not arrested and adequate compensation was not provided within four days then the outfit will launch aggressive protests across the state.
“This is not the first incident. Three incidents of Dalit oppression have taken place within a month in Nawada. We will not sit idle now,” said Azad.
Indu Devi and Leela Devi were helping their male family members in irrigating paddy crop using a water pump near a pond, predominantly under control of the dominant Yadav community. Some of them raised objections and asked the women to stop using the pond water.
When they resisted, the strongman came back with firearms and shot them. Both fell in the fields. A bullet also hit Prabhu Rajvanshi, who was returning home with his goats. All three were rushed to the district hospital where Indu Devi succumbed to her injuries.
Leela Devi has named Lallu Yadav, Rahul Yadav, Shree Yadav, Pintu Yadav and 15 others as accused. The accused fled from the village soon after the incident.