Police security was beefed up in Madapuram village near Thirubhuvanam in Sivaganga district after a 22-year-old man belonging to a caste Hindu community was murdered in a clash with a group of people belonging to a Dalit community.
Raja, son of Ravichandran from Madapuram, belonging to a caste Hindu community was intercepted by a group of Dalits and assaulted with iron rods.
He was relative of one M Naveen Kumar, whose motor bike was involved in a road accident with an autorickshaw owned by a Dalit. The accident had snowballed into a communal clash in the village. The local police rushed Raja to the Government Rajaji Hospital, Madurai, but doctors declared him brought dead. As a result, a section of people belonging to the caste Hindu community staged a protest at Madapuram demanding the immediate arrest the accused, compensation of `5 lakh and a government job for the victim’s family.
Last Monday, Naveen Kumar was attacked after his two-wheeler hit a parked auto owned by Prasath. As the motorbike rider informed about the incident to his father Murugan, a 11-member gang led by Murugan attacked Prasath’s parents including Vellaisamy and Vijaya, who sustained injuries. Both the parties lodged complaints at the local police station on same day. These two incidents led to enmity between the people of two castes in the village, which has more than 150 Dalit familes and 20 caste-Hindu families.
When Raja, an earthmover driver by profession, was returning home on two-wheeler after attending a temple festival, a 9-member-group of Dalits, which includes Vellaisamy, intercepted him at mid night on Tuesday. They assaulted him brutally before fleeing from the spot, said police sources. A murder case was registered and police arrested Vellaisamy and his second son Manu along with three others.
According to police sources, Prasath was not involved in the murderous attack but one of his relatives, M Karuppuraja, was the main accused in the case. He was among five people arrested but others were at large.
Raja’s relatives and people of his community initially refused to come to GRH to receive his body. They demanded compensation and government job for Raja’s family. But after the district administration officials issued a cheque for Rs 2 lakh, they received his body and cremated it.