UP: Caste Hindu men kill Dalit man for not giving ₹10 lakh interest for ₹1 lakh loan

The body of a 33-year-old Dalit man Manoj Kumar, missing for two days, was found near his village, Bajera, in Mainpuri district of Uttar Pradesh.

The body was found late Friday evening.

Kumar had been shot in the head and his face was crushed beyond recognition.

Manoj Kumar’s family said he had borrowed Rs 1 lakh from a local upper caste resident last year through a mediator. Recently, the lender demanded Rs 11 lakh in return, including Rs 10 lakh as interest, according to Times of India.

“My husband was shot multiple times in the head. His face was crushed. The lender, along with his three other associates, murdered him,” Kumar’s wife Puja said.

The upper-caste Hindu man was pressuring Kumar to part with his agricultural land in return.

Kumar was abducted and murdered following a dispute over it as he said he couldn’t give up his land, all that he had, the newspaper reported.

“Upper caste men from the village want to grab our land. The life of my entire family is in danger. We have to leave the village,” Kumar’s brother Satish said.

Satish also said that another brother of theirs was murdered by upper-caste Hindus similarly in 2015.

“My husband was under a great deal of stress as a few people from the upper caste community were trying to grab our land. He got a call at around 8:30 pm on Thursday evening and went out. He told me he’ll be back in a bit. When he didn’t return till late at night, we started searching for him. On Friday morning, we filed a complaint against four people who had been threatening to kill him. Police delayed in taking action. Later, his body was found in a maize field nearby our village,” TOI quoted Kumar’s wife Puja as saying.

Family members of Kumar on Saturday afternoon staged a protest with Kumar’s body on GT road, demanding the arrest of the accused. It was after the assurance of senior officials, they agreed to perform the cremation.

The accused men were identified as Shivendra Singh alias Monu Thakur, Vishnu Thakur, Atul Thakur, and Sudeep Kumar.

An FIR was registered at the Bewar police station against the four men under IPC sections 384 (extortion), 364 (kidnaping or abduction for murder), and section 3(2)(v) of the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Act 2015.

All four of them are residents of Bajera village and are absconding.

While demanding the arrest of accused, Bhim Army chief Chandra Shekhar Azad demanded protection for Kumar’s family from upper-caste Hindus.