A local leader of the ruling JD(U) in Bihar was found hanging in the toilet inside a police station, hours after being picked up for interrogation, evoking violent protests from residents of his village in Nalanda district. Three police personnel were arrested in connection with the Dalit politician’s death, a communication from the district administration said on Friday. Ganesh Ravidas (45) was found hanging from the ceiling of the toilet at Nagarnausa police station in Nalanda district on late Thursday night, official sources said.
JD(U) national president and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar also belongs to the same district. Ravidas, who was the block president of the partys Mahadalit cell, was picked up for interrogation in connection with the kidnapping of a girl wherein he was not named an accused, the sources said.
As the news of the death spread to his village early Friday, his supporters stormed the police station and began hurling stones, leaving a few policemen injured. The villagers alleged that it was a suicide abetted by custodial torture.
Some of the villagers alleged that they have noticed injury marks on the forehead of the deceased, which indicated that he was driven to suicide by torture at the hands of the police. They alleged that Ravidas had helped the girl marry the man she loved and take shelter in some far-off city, much to the chagrin of her father who had lodged a case of abduction.
The locals further alleged that the police had been in cahoots with the girls father and putting pressure on Ravidas to divulge her whereabouts. Meanwhile, DIG, Central Range, Rajesh Kumar rushed to the spot to take stock of the situation and upon his instructions, the SHO of Nagarnausa Kamlesh Kumar, Additional Sub-Inspector Balwinder Rai and Chowkidar Sanjay Paswan have been placed under arrest, a communication from the district administration said.
A case has been registered against the three arrested police personnel by the family members of the deceased under the SC/ST Act and various sections of the Indian Penal Code, the communication added.