A Dalit man has alleged he was made to lick shoes of at least 15 police officials at a police station in Ahmedabad after he told them about his caste.
According to an FIR filed by Harshad Jadav, 38, he was picked up by the police after he enquired about a commotion in his area with a police constable at the scene on the night of December 28.
The constable, identified as Vinodbhai Babubhai, attacked him with a baton without any provocation, leaving him with a fractured finger, and also abused his family members, an official at the Amraiwadi police station said on Wednesday.
Citing the FIR filed by Jadav, the official said he was taken to the police station on the same night and was locked-up for assaulting a public servant while discharging his duty.
A few police officials then asked Jadav about his caste and when he told them he was a Dalit they asked him to touch Babubhai’s feet and apologise, the official said quoting from the FIR.
Jadav, who repairs televisions for a living, did what he was told to do.
“After this, some senior officials forced Jadav to lick shoes of around 15 police officials at the police station,” the official said.
Jadav was granted bail by a court on December 29.
“Following the FIR, the constable was booked under provisions of the SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and the matter is now investigated by the Crime Branch,” Amraiwadi police station inspector O M Desai said.
The constable is yet to be arrested.
Jadav filed the FIR after a group of people gheraoed the police station.
When asked about his comments on Jadav’s charge that he was made to lick shoes of police officials, Deputy Commissioner of Police Girish Pandya raised questions on the delay by Jadav in speaking about the incident.
“The complainant was arrested for attacking a constable and was taken to court (on December 29). However, he didn’t say anything about the incident in the court,” Pandya said.
The DCP said Jadav didn’t approach the police either on December 30 or 31.
“A group of people gheraoed the police station on January 1 and demanded registration of an FIR (against the constable) which we did. Crime Branch is investigating,” the DCP said.