Five Dalits hacked to death over minor dispute

The Times of India News Service
28th July 2000

HYDERABAD: In a gruesome incident, five Dalits were hacked to death at Surampalli village under Tekmal police limits of Medak district, some 100 km from here, on Thursday night.

The deceased have been identified as Konda Aradaiah (55), his sons Mohan (25) and Janardhan (30), his relatives K Sudarshan (26) and K Ravinder (34).

According to Medak SP Ch Dwaraka Tirumala Rao, a minor tiff between Ravinder and his neighbour Pochaiah over sharing water for agricultural lands prompted the murders.

According to the SP, Ravinder thrashed Pochaiah, belong to Tenugu caste (a backward class community), when the latter insisted that his fields be watered first.

Apparently peeved over the incident, Pochaiah went to the village, gathered about 15 persons belonging to his caste, attacked Ravinder with swords and sickles who died on the spot. Later, they attacked Mohan, who was working in the nearby fields, who died instantaneously.

On their way back to the village, the group spotted Aradaiah, Janardhan and Sudarshan coming in an autorickshaw. The men pounced on the three with the weapons and stabbed to death Aradaiah in the three-wheeler itself. The remaining two tried to flee but were chased and finally killed some 50 yards away.

Tirumal Rao said the police are yet to nab the assailants. "Surprisingly, even the women were missing from their homes," he said, adding that a couple of suspects were rounded up.

According to police sources, Janardhan and Ravinder were accused in the murder of one M Mogilaiah of Yellupet village, a Tenugu casteman, in April 1999.

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