THE CPI(ML) organised a one-day dharna (sit-in) at Ambedkar Park in Haldwani on 7 June 2019 against the role of the dominant caste feudal forces in the Gram Panchayat, the Health Department, the police, administration, and the State government in the aftermath of the rape of a 9 year old minor Dalit girl in Tihri Janpad, Jaunpur, Uttarakhand.
Expressing grief and anger against the role of the local Panchayat, police-administration, Health Department, and State government after the rape of the 9 year old girl, CPI(ML) State Secretary Raja Bahuguna said the rape victim was discharged from the Dehradun hospital within 3 hours of being admitted, and then made to travel in the same jeep for hundreds of miles with the rapist. He said that the pressure put upon the victim by the feudal forces in the Gram Panchayat not to file a police report is a despicable example of the feudal domination in this region. He further said that this is the same area where some time ago a dalit youth was beaten to death by dominant forces from the dominant caste just because ‘he had the temerity to sit in a chair and have food at a marriage function’.
He also noted that the victim girl’s mother has stated that 4 years ago in this same village a dalit girl was raped and killed by dominant caste people and the entire matter was hushed up due to their influence. Raja Bahuguna said that the series of heinous incidents of oppression against dalits being perpetrated in this region is not possible without the political protection and patronage of the ruling dispensation.
At the conclusion of the dharna at Ambedkar Park, Haldwani a memorandum was sent to the State Chief Minister with the following demands:
- Strict punitive action against the IG and other police officials responsible for taking the victim and the rapist in the same vehicle. The POCSO Act requires the victim’s statement to have been recorded on the spot itself - instead she was subjected to the added atrocity of traveling with her assailant.
- Strict action against the Health Department officers/personnel responsible for negligence in the victim’s medical treatment at the behest of the police.
- Social and economic security for the victim and her family; the State government should guarantee support for the victim until she is able to stand on her own feet and become self-reliant.
- Detention and strict punitive action against the perpetrators of discrimination and atrocities against Dalits in the region under the SC/ST Act.
- The State government should curb the incidents of oppression against dalits and stop giving political protection to casteist criminals.
- Judicial enquiry into the above rape incident as well as all other incidents of atrocities against dalits in the Jaunpur region.
Present on the occasion were senior CPI(ML) leaders Bahadur Singh Jangi, Anand Singh Negi, Dr Kailash Pandey, Ambedkar Mission President GR Tamta, Sundar Lal, Advocate Sanjay Bagharwal, and Comrades Vimala Rauthan, Mahesh Tamta, Mohan Lal Arya, Diwan Ram, ND Joshi, Lalit Joshi, Rajendra Shah, Kamal Joshi, Ruby Bharadwaj, Chandan Ram, Harish Bhandari, Devendra Rautela, Gopal Gadia and others.