Tuesday, June 1, 2010

[ZESTCaste] SC notice to Haryana over Dalit families flight from Mirchpur


Published: May 31, 2010 20:29 IST | Updated: May 31, 2010 20:29 IST
New Delhi, May 31, 2010

SC notice to Haryana over Dalit families flight from Mirchpur
J. Venkatesan

Taking a serious view of 150 Dalit families in Mirchpur village in
Hissar district being forced to leave the village due to alleged
massacre by the dominant Jat community, the Supreme Court on Monday
issued notice to the Haryana government for its response to a petition
highlighting their plight.

Mirchpur, located about 145 km from New Delhi in Haryana is a large
village comprising about 1700 Jat (dominant caste) households, 250
Balmiki families, 350 Chamar families, 25 Dom families and a handful
of Brahmin households.

A vacation Bench of Justice G.S. Singhvi and Justice C.K. Prasad,
while issuing notice asked the State counsel to come out with a plan
for the rehabilitation of these 150 families, now staying in a temple
in Delhi. The Bench asked the local deputy commissioner to be present
in the court on June 2 with relevant facts after taking instructions
about the rehabilitation plan.

After hearing senior counsel Colin Gonsalves, appearing for the
petitioners, Jaswant and two others, Justice Singhvi told the State
counsel that atrocities had been committed against the people and they
were being forced to leave the village was a very serious matter. "We
want to know what action has been taken by the Government for their
rehabilitation", Justice Singhvi said.

This Writ Petition arose out of a massacre of Dalits by dominant
castes in Mirchpur village, where 150 Dalit families were brutally
attacked, two persons were killed, 35 homes destroyed, looted and
burnt and 50 houses ransacked and 25 persons injured. Thereafter,
repeated meetings of the Khap Panchayat were held in order to continue
the reign of terror and to force the Dalit community to withdraw their
cases against the accused persons.

Thereafter the entire community of Balmikis of about 150 families were
forced to leave the area and "they are now staying in a temple in
Delhi. Their children are without education. Their families are
without food, clothing and other essentials. Their lives have been
disrupted. The Khap Panchayats continue to threaten them."

The petitioners sought appropriate directions to the Respondents to
constitute a Special Investigation Team to investigate the atrocity
against the scheduled caste community on April 21 in Mirchpur village;
payment of adequate compensation, relief, rehabilitation, immediate
arrest of the accused. They wanted the court to frame and implement a
scheme for continuous and adequate protection to be provided to all
the Scheduled caste families so that they are not under any threat in


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