Author – Bhanwar Meghvanshi
Why is there no gallantry promotion for Bhaje Ram Salvi?
Bhaje Ram Salvi is a constable at the Kuanthalpolice outpost [chowki] inRajsamand district of Rajasthan, and originally comes fromJhalra village, Asind tehsil of Bhilwara district. He has worked in the state police department for the past 27 years.
After the murder of Kanhaiya Lal Sahu in Udaipur, communal tension spread across Rajasthan. His killers were caught inRajsamand district, near the headquarters of Bhim tehsil, and they were taken to Bhim police station. A frenzied mob surrounded the police station and demanded that the killers be handed over to them. The police exercised considerable patience to bring the tense situation under control, but on the second day, the atmosphere became fraught once more. A fanatical crowd too gathered again and started moving towards a religious shrine. The police took out their sticks, and the communal elements their swords; a policeman, Sandeep Chaudhary, was injured with a sword.
The injured Chaudhary was immediately admitted to Ajmer Hospital. SP [Superintendent of Police]ChunaramJatwent to meet him. The Chief Minister himself also went to meet the injured policeman. Sandeep Chaudhary was given a gallantry promotion, VIP treatment, and compensation of Rs.10 lakhs. The promptness and sensitivity with which the government acted were widely appreciated. Which should be.
After this attack on police personnel, the police adopted a tough approach towards the criminals and miscreants, and arrests began to happen thick and fast. Worried by the proceedings, the people had the market closed. On the fifth day after the market was shut down, communal elements attacked the police for a second time.
This time the target was Bhaje Ram Salvi. It is alleged that Gajendra Singh Rawat, a resident of the nearby [village of] Goma Ka Badiya, arrived with a sharp weapon in his hand, and made a deadly attack on Bhaje Ram from behind.
Despite being assaulted so suddenly, Bhaje Ram Salvi fought the attacker fiercely. He did not give up even after falling down with two fingers of one hand and the whole other hand almost completely cut off. He bravely continued to fight. By this time another policeman also arrived to help him. He also fought back giving it his all. Then more policemen arrived to help, causing the attacker to run off with his weapon, although soon he was caught.
Watching the violence from the doors and windows were people in the houses aroundBadnoreChauraha [intersection]. No one dared to come forward. The injured Bhaje Ram still did not lose his spirits. With the blood flowing steadily, he was also losing consciousness. Despite this, he sought help from the people and tied his severed hand with a cloth. His colleagues took him to Bhim Hospital, from where he was referred to Beawar, and from where he was then taken to Ajmer. With the timely treatment given in Ajmer, Bhaje Ram Salvi and his hand are safe and well, and presently he is recuperating at his home.
Bhaje Ram Salvi is from the scheduled castes. Neither the SP sahib nor any politician visited him in the hospital, nor was any announcement made regarding a gallantry promotion for this brave fighter. Even the compensation offered was only Rs.7.5 lakhs. The most shameful point is that when he was discharged from the hospital, even an ambulance was not provided.
The way in which Sandeep Choudhary was managing the law and order situation. Bhaje Ram Salvi was also handling it in the same way. The motive of his attacker was to spread frenzy by killing the policeman. Then why the discrimination in the announcement of the gallantry promotion and the compensation offered? Is it just because Bhaje Ram Salvi belongs to the Dalit community? A Dalit may be murdered or they may be attacked with the intent to kill. Why does this have no effect on our government and administration? Why do our politicians not show any empathy for Dalits? Why is the administration so indifferent towards our officers, employees, and ordinary people?
We are watching it all. We are understanding it all. This caste mentality and discrimination will be remembered. These bitter memories will become our weapon. We will not sit silent. We will expose every injustice and scream about it. Our howls and cries will one day ravage everything.
(This article is reproduced from the Facebook wall of famous Dalit thinker and social activist Bhanwar Meghvanshi.)
यहाँ हिन्दी में भी पढ़ें: भजे राम सालवी को गेलेंट्री प्रमोशन क्यों नहीं?
[Story Translated By Lotika Singha]