A 70-year-old Dalit farmer, who was brutally assaulted by a group of upper caste people in Manapatana village under Kendrapara Sadar police limits in July, started an indefinite dharna along with his family members in front of office of the Sub-Divisional Police Officer (SDPO) in Kendrapara protesting against police inaction on the case from Friday.
The farmer, Rabindra Mallick, alleged that his right leg and left arm were fractured as Maguni Das, Manguli Das and Sridhar Das attacked him with iron rod over a land dispute on July 1. Though more than a month has passed since he filed a case with police, no accused person has been arrested till date. Besides, the upper caste villagers have ostracised Mallick’s family.
After Mallick started the dharna, the district officials and police assured him of taking necessary steps against the accused persons. But he did not call off the dharna stating that he would continue it till the accused are arrested.
“I had lodged an FIR with Kendrapara sadar police against the accused persons. Since the attackers are close to the ruling party leaders, police have turned a blind eye to my suffering,” said Mallick.
Refuting the allegation of police negligence, Kendrapara SDPO Nrusingha Charan Swain said, “The persons, who assaulted Mallick, have fled after committing the crime. A manhunt has been launched to nab them. An inquiry has been ordered into the incident,” he added.
Collector Niranjan Nayak said, “The administration would bear the treatment cost of Mallick. On Friday, I granted ` 10,000 from the district Red Cross fund for the purpose. I have also directed the police to arrest all the accused persons soon.”