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‘Punish My Son But Why Was My House Demolished?’ Asks Father of Pravesh Shukla

His father further said that the house didn't belong to Pravesh nor did he contribute to its building.

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"My house was demolished, my whole family has come out on road," said Ramakant Shukla, father of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) worker Pravesh Shukla, who faces charges of urinating on a hapless Adivasi man.

An old video of Pravesh urinating on the man, identified as Dashmat Rawat, in an inebriated state while holding cigarette in his hand, went viral on 4 July, which led to a huge uproar and indigitation across the country.

Along with arresting Pravesh, the administration, alleging encroachment, also demolished parts of the house where his family stayed.

Speaking to The Quint, while his father condemned the son's act and said Pravesh should be given strict punishment, he took objection to the demolition of the house.

"Let there be inquiry as per the law. I would protest and condemn any illegal act he is found guilty of. He should be given strict punishment, I don't mind it. But my house was demolished, my whole family has come out on the road."
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"My mother is an 80-year-old widow, we are four brothers. We have our daughters-in-law, wives, and three granddaughters. Where do we go?" he asked.

He further said that the house didn't belong to Pravesh nor did he contribute to its building.

"He didn't contribute a penny to build the house, nor does he own any land or property; we built this house using money that came to us from the property of our fathers/grandfathers," he told The Quint.

He further said that the administration didn't listen to their pleas to not demolish the house.

"This is such an injustice; the administration demolished our house. We pleaded to them – 'Give him whatever punishment you want to give him; even hang him but don't demolish our house, we will become homeless'. But the administration didn't listen."

'It's Yet Another Crime'

The Quint spoke to several people from different communities in Sidhi, and all of them, including the victim's family and other Adivasis, condemned the demolition of the house of the accused's family.

An Adivasi member from the Kol community, requesting not to be named, said:

"We want the strictest punishment for Pravesh, but nothing for his family. The destruction of his house is wrong. It is yet another crime. It's the rainy season... we don't even destroy a bird's nest here, and we are talking about an entire family of humans whose house has been destroyed. I will say it again, punish the culprit, not the crime."

Pravesh Shukla, who is reportedly an aide of Bharatiya Janata Party MLA Kedarnath Shukla, was arrested on the night of 4 July, and slapped with charges under the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atroctities) Act and the stringent National Security Act.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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