Chhattarpur: A Dalit groom was allegedly beaten and forced to get down from the horse he was riding as part of a pre-wedding ritual, by upper caste men at Sadwa village in the district, the police said here on Sunday.
The incident took place two days ago, when as part of a pre-wedding ritual, the Dalit groom Manoj Ahirwar (21) went around the village on horse-back, seeking blessings of village elders, when upper caste members objected to it, Chhattarpur`s Additional Superintendent of Police (ASP) Neeraj Pandey said.
He said that the police arrested seven people identified as Ladle Yadav, Khadia Yadav, Ammu Yadav, Mitthu Yadav, Jaahar Yadav, Ram Singh and Pavrat Pal, while six other accused are absconding.
As per village "tradition", only upper caste grooms are "allowed" to ride on horse-back, while lower castes have to walk on foot to seek blessings of elders.
However, when the Dalit groom was on his procession along with others on a horse-back, a few among them allegedly commented something about upper caste women, which led to a scuffle and they strongly objected to the lower caste groom "violating" village "tradition".
Upper caste men including village headman Khuman Singh, allegedly attacked the Dalit groom, who was pulled down and beaten mercilessly. Allegedly, they also attacked women members of the procession and later escaped the spot.
The Dalit groom and others went to the Badamalhera police station and lodged a complaint, after which a case was registered against 13 people including Khuman Singh and his two sons under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code and the SC/ST Act.