Visakhapatnam: The recent incident of tonsure of a Dalit youth in Vizag city has once again exposed the humiliation in the state.
The Human Rights Forum (HRF) says that tonsuring is a repugnant caste atrocity and is often done to humiliate Dalits who stand up for their rights and seek to assert their dignity as human beings.
The Pendurthi case in which a Dalit youth, Srikanth (20), was tonsured, must be pursued vigorously and meticulously so that all those who committed the odious crime are convicted.
We must remember that in the matter of caste atrocities against Dalits, the wheels of justice move very slowly.
We only have to see how the case related to the tonsuring of two Dalit youth — Dadala Venkataratnam and Koti Chinnaraju of Venkatayapalem in Ramchandrapuram Assembly constituency, East Godavari district, has progressed.
The crime in which the then TDP MLA Thota Trimurthulu is prime accused occurred on December 29, 1996. The then MLA had got them tonsured in his presence since the two Dalit youth had opposed his diktat and campaigned for the BSP in the 1996 Parliament elections.
The crime was registered under appropriate sections of the SCs, STs (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 and investigation was closely supervised by the then SP Aditya Tripathi.
However, it took over 20 years for the hearings to begin in 2017, at the SC, ST Special Court in Visakhapatnam and even now, 24 years later, the trial is not yet complete.
The former MLA and A1 in the case, Trimurthulu, last year crossed over to the YSRC party.
There have been several atrocities against Dalit youth in recent times. Indugamilli Varaparasad of Vedulapalli village in Sitanagaram mandal, East Godavari, was beaten and tonsured by a sub-inspector on July 19, 2020.
On July 21, Yericharla Kiran Kumar, a Dalit youth, died allegedly due to police torture at Chirala in Prakasam district. He was detained and allegedly tortured by the cops for not wearing a face mask.