Ujjain: In yet another shocking example of deeply rooted caste bias, a groom belonging to Dalit community was prevented from riding a horse by upper caste men during a pre-wedding procession in Ujjain’s Badwah town of Madhya Pradesh.
However, the administration came to the rescue of the groom and arrested half a dozen men accused of preventing the procession. The groom would tie the nuptial knot amid heightened security later on Wednesday.
A Dalit man Ramlal, a native of village Jafla, is scheduled to marry off his son Neeraj and daughter Sapna on Feb 8. During a pre-wedding ritual on Tuesday, Neeraj atop a horse had left home along with his friend and relatives who were dancing on the tunes of music band.
Some upper caste hooligans, including Jalam Singh and Ankit, barged into the ceremony and stopped the procession saying that a Dalit groom was not entitled to such ‘gusto and honour’ and asked Neeraj to come down from the horse.
“A dalit groom has never rode a horse and got music band in the bana ceremony,” they said.
The groom family then approached local police station and complained about the matter. In no time, SDM Avi Prasad accompanied them to the village along with police personnel and ensured that the ceremony passed off peacefully.
“Police later booked the locals for preventing the procession and arrested the accused under SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act 1989,” TI Vivek Kanodia said.
However, afraid of a backlash from the upper caste community in the village, the groom’s uncle Ramchandar has sought police protection as Neeraj and his sister Sapna would be married on Wednesday.
The SDM Avi Prasad has deployed heavy police force in the village for three days so as to keep things in check.
In the past as well, upper caste people have interrupted Dalit marriages.
In 2015 in Ratlam, a groom had to wear a helmet for his marriage procession so as to protect himself from any possible stone pelting from the upper sections of the village.