Hathras: Valmiki community protests, calls an 8-day strike in Agra

In Agra, scores of Valmiki community members protested against the rape and murder of a 19-year-old Dalit woman from the Valmiki community by upper-caste Hindu men in Hathras, Uttar Pradesh.

Agitated community members pelted stones at the police and shouted slogans demanding “Justice for Hamari Samaj ki beti” while dozens of policemen, equipped with riot gear and lathis.

On Friday, the members of the Valmiki community have also announced an 8-day strike of cleaning works across the city protesting the constant caste-based violence against them. Video clips shared on social media show piles of waste and garbage by the side of busy roads. The protesters refused to pick garbage up from the streets.

On Friday, employees of Valmiki Samaj in SN Medical College and Hospital in Agra halted work in protest and demanded justice for the Dalit woman.

Earlier, Dalit leader and Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad appealed to Valmiki community across the country to boycott work “so that this government knows who is actually spreading dirt in the society.”

The caste-based violence and forcible cremation of woman from Valmiki community have triggered widespread protests across India.