MP forest staff open fire during minor dispute, kill Dalit man

Shivpuri (MP), Feb 16 (PTI) Fifteen Madhya Pradesh forest officials were booked for murder on Sunday after allegedly opening fire and killing a Dalit man following a dispute in Shivpuri district, police said.

The altercation started after water splashed on a forest ranger at a handpump site in Fatehpur village at around 2:30pm on Sunday, said an official.

“Complainant Saroj Balmiki said the dispute began when her two daughters were filling water from the handpump. Forest Ranger SK Sharma arrived to fill his water bottle. Some water splashed on him after which he abused the women there,” Karera police station in charge Rakesh Sharma said.

“Balmiki said a woman forest officer arrived at the scene and started hitting her daughters. One of the girls rushed home and called her father Madan. He and his brother Pankaj arrived and were hit by the butts of guns by the forest staff. When Madan and his brother tried to flee, the forest staff shot at them,” he added.

A bullet hit Madan on the back and he died en route to a hospital, while his brother, who got splinter wounds, is being treated, the official said.

“We have booked Sharma, the woman officer and 13 staff for murder under sections of IPC and SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. They have absconded and efforts are on to nab them,” he said.

Villagers, meanwhile, protested at the police station demanding immediate arrest of the accused.

Source: Outlook