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‘Threats Won’t Stop Me’: Dalit Man Thrashed For Selling Biryani

The three men had an objection to him selling vegetarian biryani “despite being a Dalit.”

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(Video Editor: Ashutosh Bhardwaj)

“Not going to stop out of fear. I will continue to sell (vegetarian) biryani only. That’s how I feed my children,” said 35-year-old Lokesh Jatav, who was allegedly thrashed, abused and threatened by three men, belonging to privileged castes, in Uttar Pradesh’s Greater Noida area.

They had an objection to him selling vegetarian biryani “despite being a Dalit.”

“On 13 December evening, I was about to return home after selling biryani in the nearby Mohammad Khera village. Three men, who own shops in my village in Rabupura, came and enquired about my caste. When I told them I belong to the Jatav community, they started thrashing me and abusing.”
Lokesh Jatav

All three men have since been arrested by the Uttar Pradesh police.

One of the accused, Sonu Bhati, allegedly recorded the entire incident and uploaded it on social media. “They just wanted to show how they are beating a man from the oppressed caste. They wanted to show their dominance,” Jatav said.

“They asked me to fold my hands and beg for mercy. I belong to an oppressed caste so I had to do it,” he added.

'My Son Should Not Have Beaten Him Up’

Sitting with Bhati’s youngest child in her lap, his mother Parmeshwari condemned her son’s actions. “So what if he was a Dalit? He was selling biryani to feed his family. My son should not have beaten him up.”

Parmeshwari, the accused Sonu Bhati’s mother
Parmeshwari, the accused Sonu Bhati’s mother
(Photo: The Quint)

She said that her son (Bhati) had been out drinking with his friends, which is probably why he acted out of control and beat up the man. “When he came back home, his father also scolded him.”

All Accused Arrested

All three accused in the case have since been arrested by the Uttar Pradesh police. The cops announced the development on Twitter, saying that no such activity will be tolerated.

Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath also tweeted about the development, saying that the men had been arrested from Bulandshahr.

“All the three accused of assaulting a biryani vendor in Noida have been arrested from Bulandshahr in UP. There is no place for any kind of discrimination against anyone, on any basis. Strict action will be taken against those who try to hamper the system,” Adityanath said.

(The Quint is available on Telegram. For handpicked stories every day, subscribe to us on Telegram)

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