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First casualty of Bharat Bandh protest may have been victim of personal enmity

Rahul Pathak was standing on his balcony when a bullet struck him. He was rushed to a hospital but he was declared brought dead.

First casualty of Bharat Bandh protest may have been victim of personal enmity
Morena in Madhya Pradesh saw violent protests during Bharat Bandh. (PTI Photo)

New Delhi: Rahul Pathak was neither a protester and nor was he part of security arrangement deputed to contain them. Yet, he became the first casualty of a nation-wide Bharat Bandh organised by Dalit groups on Monday against a Supreme Court order 'diluting' the SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities Act.

His fault?

Rahul was reportedly standing on the balcony of his house in Madhya Pradesh's Morena at a time when there was utter chaos on the ground below. Protestors were raising slogans and holding banners, charging-up an already tense situation. In the middle of all the pandemonium, a bullet hit Rahul - a student. He was rushed to the hospital but was declared brought dead. While it is suspected that a stary bullet may have been fired during the protest and it is this that killed Rahul, his family on Tuesday alleged that a man called Ramu Gurjar intentionally targeted Rahul and shot him dead.

Rahul's family members have alleged that Gurjar had a personal score to settle with him and took aim from the ground - using the protests as his cover. They have said Gurjar and Rahul had had a long-standing enmity and it is this that culminated into a tragedy.

Local police officials have filed an FIR against Gurjar and have begun investing the matter.