Friday, December 31, 2010

BABUNDAR GHASIA, SONBHADRA - The real "caste-conscious, people-friendly" face of UP Police.

This is a real story of police atrocity and gross violation of human rights. A tale that exposes the inhuman face of police in Uttar Pradesh and the plight of the poor - mostly Dalit - communities in the state. Babunder Ghasia, a Dalit by caste still shivers when he recalls the day 4 years ago when a police  party raided his house and mercilessly beat him on charges of copper wire theft. For a crime which he did not commit, Babunder was subjected to inhuman third degree torture and subsequently jailed.
     Babunder recalls, he was all alone when police entered his house at 2 pm. They kicked him, asking about some electric copper wire which had been stolen (wire is used in electricity transmission). The entire house was ransacked, and when the stolen wire was not found, he was taken to Bihari Hotel where he was so severely beaten that he fainted.  
     After that, the police took Babunder to the
 Kotwali police station and later to the hospital, with a made-up story that Babunder has broken his hand after falling down a hill. However, when Babunder dared to tell the reality to the doctor, he was again thrashed by the Sub-Inspector accompanying him. Babunader was put in lockup, and when his wife came to meet him, the police verbally abused her by using derogatory caste names, and the Sub-Inspector threatened to mete out even more inhuman punishment to Babunder in jail. Babunder claims that the policemen themselves had brought some electric copper wire from a Kabari wala (junk seller) which they said was recovered from him, and on basis of this fabricated evidence, Babunder was booked for theft and sent to Mirzapur jail.
     Later on, his family got him out on bail after gathering the required bail amount. Those days have passed but the horror still lurks in the minds of Babunder and his family. Babunder hopes that someday, those people who had almost ruined his and his family's life would be punished. Today, Babunder lives with the stigma of being called a thief. He hopes that by making his story public,
others might be saved from meeting a similar fate.

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