JALGAON: In a shocking incident, three minor Dalit boys were stripped, beaten and paraded naked for a village in Maharashtra's Jalgaon for allegedly swimming in a village well. The shocking incident was caught on camera and later shared on the social media. The issue sparked off a furore in the state.
The incident took place on June 10 (Sunday) but the came to the fore only after videos of the boys' being paraded naked in the Vakadi village went viral after which the authorities swung into action. The incident has come as a major embarrassment for the ruling BJP-Shiv Sena government in the state at a time when Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis is on a tour of Dubai, Canada and US to attract investments.
Later, speaking to reporters, State Social Justice Minister Dilip Kamble confirmed that two persons have been arrested in this connection and further investigations are underway.
Union Social Welfare Minister Ramdas Athawale too condemned the incident and demanded "stringent action against the perpetrators of the atrocity on the boys".
To beat the scorching heat, the three young boys from the Dalit community, aged around 12-14, had jumped into a village well for a cool swim on last Sunday.
As the news spread, many people from the upper caste gathered near the well and pulled out the boys.
They were then thrashed, stripped and paraded naked around the village.
The boys can be seen wearing only sandals and some patvelia leaves and protested when at least one person was assaulting them on the legs and back with sticks and what appeared to be a leather belt.
The families of the three boys later lodged a complaint with the local police.
Several political leaders from the opposition Congress and ruling Bharatiya Janata Party, including ex-minister Eknath Khadse, and other leaders from various parties, have condemned the incident and demanded that the culprits be booked under the SC/ST Act.