Bhavnagar (Gujarat): The Gujarat Police late in the night Friday detained three persons after a 21-year-old Dalit youth was found murdered merely because he owned and rode a horse. "A Dalit man was killed in Gujarat's Bhavnagar district by some higher-caste persons for keeping and riding a horse", the police has said.
"Three suspects have been detained from a nearby village regarding this matter. Also, we have sought the help of the Bhavnagar Crime Branch for further investigations", local police is quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
The deceased identified as Pradeep Rathod, was objected and threatened by some of his co-villagers to not ride the horse a few days back.
"Pradeep had intended to sell the horse following the threats but I had convinced him of not doing so. When he did not return home till late yesterday night, we got worried and started looking for him. We found him lying dead on the road leading to our farm. The horse was also lying dead at a little distance," victim's father Kalubhai Rathod told ANI.
On Friday, following protests from the family of the youth, Pradeep Rathod, and other residents of Timbi village in Umrala taluka, police said they were questioning three men in connection with the murder. All the three are from the Kshatriya community, police said.
The three who have been detained are identified as Natubha Darbar from Timbi, and brothers Ghoghubha Gohil and Jitubha Gohil from the neighbouring Piprali village.
The incident came to light amid growing intolerance against Dalits and minorities ever since BJP came to power in New Delhi. Recently, some families were subjected to social boycott in Rajasthan after Dalit youth rode a horse for marriage.
More recently, two Dalit men from a village near Gandhinagar in Gujarat were allegedly thrashed by members of upper caste Rajput community for "sporting a moustache" in two separate incidents reported in 2017.
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