Haryana Dalits allege bias over power supply
Sihi: Residents of a Dalit-dominated village near Gurgaon say they are being denied adequate power supply just because they are from the depressed communities.
Village elders of Sihi say that while neighbouring villages have got attached to an urban sub-station of Gurgaon, they alone have been denied similar benefits.
Sihi, eight km from Gurgaon town with its corporate towers and hi-rise residential apartments of the rich, is home to around 1,200 people. It is the only Dalit-dominated village in Gurgaon district. A total of 38 villages were included in the Municipal Corporation Gurgaon (MCG) after their panchayats were dissolved.
Authorities had said they would provide basic amenities to these villages -- including good roads and electricity supply as in urban areas.
Kherki Daula, Narsinghpur and Mohamadpur villages on the Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway along with Sihi were to get 24-hour power supply from the urban electricity feeder.
Six months ago, all the other villages except Sihi were attached to the urban sub-station, Sihi village elder Sundar Lal Kataria told a news agency.
Sihi's former sarpanch Surender Kumar told a news agency that 99 percent of the village was made up of Dalits and backward castes.
"We tried to get our rights. We made several complaints to the authorities including local legislator and former minister Rao Dharampal. But there was no response," Kumar said.
Haryana's Minister of Power, Forests and Environment Ajay Singh Yadav told the agency: "I am not aware of this episode. I will be able to reply after I get a full report. I will look into the matter."
Sanjeev Chopra, a superintendent engineer in the municipal corporation, promised to dig out "the facts".
As a rural entity, Sihi will be entitled to six to eight hours of power a day. Urban sub-stations supply round-the-clock electricity.
Sihi wants to get into the urban sub-station -- like the other villages.