Nepalese govt forms high-level committee to investigate Dalit killings over arranged marriage dispute

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, IndiaUpdated: Jun 15, 2020, 01:02 PM IST
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(Representative image) Photograph:(ANI)

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As many as six people were found dead, including four who belonged to the Dalit community

Amid condemnation from international media and UN human rights chief, the Nepalese government has formed a high-level independent committee to investigate the alleged caste-based killings. 

As per media reports, Nabaraj BK, a Dalit, along with a group of friends, visited the home of his girlfriend Sushama Malla, who belonged to a higher caste, in Jajarkot district.

Nabaraj visited the parents of 17-year-old Malla as they were planning an arranged marriage for her. Following a heated argument with the parents, the group started leaving. Witnesses say that the group was followed by a mob till a river where they were killed and their bodies later discovered from the river. 

As many as six people were found dead, including four who belonged to the Dalit community. 

The Nepalese government formed the independent committee after huge protests by Dalit groups erupted. 

So far, 29 people have been arrested, including Nabaraj's girlfriend and her parents. 

Dalit groups activist fear that the officials would avoid describing the case as caste-based discrimination. 

Calling it a "dalit massacre", Manjit Tamrakar, former acting president of the National Dalit Commission said, "They (the government) are trying hard to prove that it was not due to caste-based discrimination," reported The Guardian. 

Urmila BK, Nabaraj's mother, said that the couple was fond of each other but the girl's parents were not happy as he was a Dalit. Urmila said that Sushama told Nabaraj that her family was arranging her marriage and asked him to come to her home. 

"...She did not stop calling my son. I wish they had stopped talking to each other after that and this day would not have come," Urmila said.