A 14-year-old Dalit boy died in Uttar Pradesh's Varanasi after he was allegedly beaten by upper caste men for stealing mangoes and rice, his family claimed on Friday, 5 August.
While a case has been registered against four people in the matter, the police has said the boy died of illness and no injury marks were found on his body in the post-mortem report.
Papu Ram, the father of deceased Vijay Kumar Gautam, in his complaint to the police, alleged that his son had gone to the shop of one Guddu Singh a few days ago.
"At the shop, Guddu Singh, Pakru Singh, Saurabh Singh and Shivam Singh accused Gautam of stealing mangoes and rice. They also attacked Guatam. The accused left him and threatened to beat him again if he told anyone about it,” reads the police complaint by Ram.
One of the accused, Saurabh Singh, later called the police. Police officers who reached the spot made Gautam pay Rs 400 to Saurabh Singh for the stolen mangoes and rice, the father said.
Ram alleged that his son sustained internal injuries in the attack and was admitted to a hospital on 31 July where he succumbed to injuries.
Pappu Ram's elder son Satish Kumar has alleged that the accused forcibly picked up his brother Vijay from the road and locked him inside their house. "He was beaten up so badly that he became unconscious. When he regained consciousness, the guardian of the boys gave him money and threatened to kill him if he told anything to anyone," Kumar said.
However, Station House Officer of Kapsethi police station Rajesh Tripathi said, "No injuries were found in the post-mortem report of Gautam. He died of illness."
'Beaten to Death in PM Modi's Constituency...': Congress Slams Government
The Congress party, which has been protesting in the Parliament against inflation and the hike in prices of essential food items, has condemned the alleged murder of the Varanasi boy.
"A minor Dalit boy has been beaten to death by a mob in PM Modi's constituency, just for 4 kg of rice. The poor aren't able to purchase basic food commodities due to rising prices & HM Amit Shah ji says that protesting against the price rise is a protest against Ram Mandir," Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge wrote on Twitter.
"An MP blatantly lied in the Parliament that there's no inflation. Upon its failure, another lied that poor Indians are fed in 'free fund' by PM. When all failed HM Amit Shah ji falls back to creating religious divide, while the poor & middle class continues to suffer," Kharge said.