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Dalit girl set on fire for pursuing education in UP

Dalit girl set on fire for pursuing education in UP
Uttar Pradesh: A 17-year-old Dalit girl, in Diwan-Tola hamlet of Patthardewa village in Kushinagar district, was set on fire on Thursday morning.

According to the police, the four accused were angry because the victim was appearing for the ongoing intermediate examinations.

As per the victim's statement to the police, the student was alone in her hut and cooking food when the accused-Dhiraj Yadav, his brothers Arvind and Dinesh, and their father Ram Pravesh Yadav-barged in, dragged her out, poured kerosene on her and set her on fire.

"They didn't like that I was pursuing my education because they were failing in school every year. A few months ago, Dhiraj somehow got a photograph of me and tried to blackmail me. A major altercation broke out between our families on the issue," she was quoted as saying to the police in the community health centre.

The victim was admitted with 70 per cent burn injuries.

The victim's brother said Dhiraj had attacked him earlier in the day. "He fought with me in the field. He was angry because I had reacted against his plan to blackmail my sister. Later, he went to his father and said I had beaten him. Since we belong to the dhobi community, a low caste, they decided to punish me and my family," he said.

Meanwhile, Station House Officer of Ramkola, under which the village falls, P.K. Tripathi said, "It is a case of assault and battery. We have registered cases against the accused persons and a manhunt is on to arrest them. The condition of the victim is critical."

In another incident, the village chief of Sikarwar village in Sonbhadra district, Ram Kishun Jaiswal, and his six aides forcefully tonsured the head of a 42-year-old Dalit man, Vippat, when the latter protested against his hay roof being taken away for Holika dahan.

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