UP: Dalit student forced to shave off moustache by ‘upper caste’ men

Noida: A Dalit youth was allegedly made to shave off his moustache by a group of “upper-caste” men in western Uttar Pradesh’s Saharanpur district, with police saying an FIR has been lodged against the accused.

Police have also booked the barber who shaved off the moustache of the Dalit youth, a college student in his early 20s, who was taken to his salon by the group of men belonging to the same village.

According to the complaint by the youth, the incident took place in the morning of July 18 in Shimlana village under the Bargaon police station limits when the six “upper-caste” men held him and hurled abuses at him.

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The group, which was armed with weapons, then took him to a local salon where he was “forced” to get his moustache shaved by the barber while the whole episode was video-graphed and later shared on social media.

An FIR was lodged at the Bargaon police station on Thursday after a complaint by the youth under Indian Penal Code Sections 147, 148 (both related to rioting), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 504 (provoking breach of peace) and 506 (criminal intimidation).

Charges under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 have also been slapped against the seven accused, including the barber, police said.

“A video of the incident went viral on social media after which a complaint was made at the local police station in which the complainant said some men of his Shimlana village misbehaved with him and assaulted him,” Superintendent of Police (Rural) Atul Sharma said.

“The FIR has been lodged under relevant provisions of the law. Police teams have been formed to trace the men involved in the episode and they would be arrested soon, Sharma added.

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