Updated: Oct 31, 2021, 07:01 IST
RAJKOT: Five people were arrested for the brutal attack on six members of a Dalit family that has alleged that they were targeted by members of upper caste as they turned up for the installation ceremony at a temple.
However, Kutch police said the allegations about temple entry were being probed in detail and claimed villagers did not discriminate against Dalit families.
All have been booked for relevant sections of IPC including attempt to murder as well as sections of Atrocities Act.
Addressing reporters on Saturday, Patil said, “According to primary investigation, the villagers had no objection with Dalit family praying at the temple, but looks like a fallout of political rivalry. The victim Jaga Vaghela had won the gram panchayat by-election in 2018 garnering 80% votes and all communities had voted for him. He had defeated Bhanji Suthar whom he has accused of the conspiracy of October 26 attack.”
The quarrel had started after buffaloes were left open in Jaga’s farm and he has alleged that this was part of Suthar’s conspiracy. Patil added that Jaga did not own the land but it was pastoral land.
Police claimed that victim’s family had been allowed to pray inside the temple peacefully earlier too.
The state government on Friday announced Rs 21 lakh compensation for the six victims. Social justice and empowerment minister Pradipsinh Parmar said that chief minister Bhupendra Patel had immediately ordered strict action in the case and police have lodged an FIR against the accused.
Meanwhile, Congress leader and Vadgam MLA Jignesh Mewani said it was only after he threatened an agitation over the issue that the government announced compensation. “Our fight against untouchability will, however, continue,” he tweeted.