Sunday, August 29, 2010

SC slams Haryana for not arresting Hissar culprits

Thu Aug 26 2010, 19:06 hrs Updated: Thu Aug 26 2010, 19:09 hrs New Delhi:

The SC directed the Haryana govt to make all efforts to arrest those involved in
the murder of two Dalits.

The Supreme Court today directed the Haryana government to make all possible
efforts to arrest by September 10 those involved in the murder of two Dalits and
the destruction of 150 houses in Mirchpur village, Hissar on April 21.

The violence was allegedly orchestrated by people belonging to the upper castes.

The Court also slammed the Haryana government for its failure to provide relief
and rehabilitation measures to the affected families and directed authorities to
provide two quintal of wheat to each affected family.

"Some people are not being arrested. They should be arrested before the next
date of hearing," a Bench comprising Justices G S Singhvi and A K Ganguly said
while posting the next date of hearing for September 10.

The apex court perused the over 100-page report submitted by the state
government in a sealed cover along with the fact-finding report prepared by a
team of lawyers representing the victims.

"We have seen the report (of state government) which is contrary to the report
of the other side," the Bench said while expressing dissatisfaction over the
steps taken by the state government and directed it to file a fresh affidavit.

The fact-finding report submitted by senior advocte Colin Gonsalves, who is
representing the victims, said the state government failed to keep its promise
of providing adequate relief and rehabilitation.

He said in the report it is clearly mentioned that the authorities have not
properly implemented the MNREGA.
Further, the dwelling houses for Dalits in the village are made of mud and not
cement, the report said adding even the district collector did not visit the
village, and instead, only met the victims at the Valmiki Temple in the capital
where they were given shelter.

The apex court had on June 2 warned that it would "take a very serious view" if
such incidents recurred.
"Such incidents of killings are taking place for the last five years," the Bench
said during the hearing while expressing anguish that the administration was not
doing enough.

During the previous hearing, the court had pulled up the state for its failure
to prevent the incident -- reportedly a fallout of a dog of the (Valmiki) Dalit
community barking at upper caste Jat boys. A paraplegic girl was burnt to death,
trapped inside her burning home. Her father, who tired to save her, later
succumbed to injuries.

The apex court had recorded an undertaking from the Haryana government that it
would rebuild some of the houses damaged in the arson and provide employment to
at least one member of each affected family under the MNREGA or other
government-sponsored schemes by the next hearing.

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