Thirsty Dalit Boy Drowns in Well after Being Denied Water from School Hand Pump
Yes, Veeran Ahirwar a Dalit boy in Damoh district of Madhya Pradesh, drowned in a well. And the sole reason for this drowning is denied access to school hand pump to quench his thirst. The reason why this student of class 3 was denied access to school hand pump is shocking. The reason is caste discrimination.
— Shams Ur RehmanAlavi (@indscribe) March 10, 2016
The incident took place on Tuesday and as mentioned in Catch News Veeran’s brother who is studying in the same school, who is also the eyewitness to this incident claims that school teachers didn’t allow them near the school hand pump because they are Dalits, so they had to go to a nearby well to quench their thirst and while trying to fetch a pail of water, Veeran lost his balance and fell in and he is now no more.
Five teachers and the principal of this primary school have been suspended for discrimination on the basis of caste. Veeran’s brother Sevak has spoke to the reporter’s in which he mentioned that this is not the first time the teachers have ordered them not to touch the hand pump and were forced to use the well to draw water.
“For past one week, there has been a water crisis. Villagers also come to fetch water from the school hand pump.” On Tuesday, a crowd had gathered at the hand pump and students also joined the queue. When Veeran went to the well, there was a crowd there too. Veeran lost balance and fell into the well”, said collector, Shriniwas Sharma. He further said that “We’re sending a detailed report on the matter to the state government, but no caste discrimination has taken place,”. But Sriniwas Sharma, however did admit that the negligence from school staff is the reason behind this tragedy.
Veeran’s father Bedi Lal asked these following lines to Manish Bagri, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Janpad Panchayat, Damoh district. “We have to listen to casteist remarks, and are even threatened if we get close to the members of upper caste. I have lost my son, only because my son was not allowed to draw water from the hand pump. Should we remain thirsty because we are untouchables?”