HYDERABAD: A 43-year-old man allegedly threatened and abused two Dalit men and made them to enter a small pond in Nizamabad district of Telangana, police said today.
The video of the purported incident, which took place at Abhangapatnam village in Navipet mandal of the district in September, has gone viral on social media and being highlighted by television channels.
After the video went viral, the Madiga Reservation Porata Samithi (MRPS) approached the police and lodged a complaint, Navipet Police Station Sub-Inspector J Naresh said.
"Based on the complaint, a case under IPC section 506 (criminal intimidation) and under relevant sections of Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act was registered against one Bharat Reddy, a local businessman who allegedly threatened and abused the two agricultural labourers in filthy language," the SI told PTI over phone.
Police's preliminary investigation revealed that Reddy was getting gravel transported and had engaged a tractor for the purpose. However, the duo had allegedly stopped the tractor, which left Reddy fuming, following which he abused and threatened them.
The video shows a bearded man holding a stick and threateningly asking the two men, who are folding their hands (apparently requesting him to spare them), to enter the pond as a "punishment". The man is heard using filthy language against the duo.
The video also shows the two men get into water and take dips even as the bearded man continues to hurl abuses against them.
"None of the two victims have lodged a complaint with police in this connection," the police official said.
Police are in the process of questioning Reddy.
When asked about the television reports, which claimed that the accused is linked to BJP, the police official dismissed reports.
Meanwhile, referring to the incident, Telangana BJP said it strongly condemns "misrepresentation" by sections of the media on the viral video.
"The individual exhibiting barbaric and unacceptable behaviour in Nizamabad on Dalits is not a BJP leader, nor does he hold any position in the party at any level," the party said in a statement.
"BJP Telangana will consider legal options against those, who are indulging in blatant misrepresentation," it added.