Court to hear Madhya Pradesh tribe’s security plea Thursday

April 8th, 2008 - 8:02 pm ICT by admin  

Bhopal, April 8 (IANS) The Madhya Pradesh High Court will Thursday hear a petition demanding security for the nomadic Pardhi tribe so that they can vote in a by-poll April 12. The petitioner, Anurag Modi of Samajwadi Jan Parishad, had claimed that Pardhis - a denotified nomadic tribe - are being kept at camps by the Betul district administration because they may face violence if they go back to their respective villages.

Villagers set their houses on fire in September 2007 after one of them was accused of raping and killing a woman in Multai Tehsil of Betul district.

The petition filed Monday seeks protection for the victims so that they can cast their vote in the by-poll being held for the Betul parliamentary seat. The court Tuesday put off the hearing for Thursday.

After their houses were burnt down, around 300 members of the pardhi community, including women and children, were lodged in two camps run by the administration.

“More than six months have passed since the people belonging to Pardhi community have been living in camps and no efforts have been made by the administration to rehabilitate them,” Modi said.

He sought security on the ground that candidates like Masod Sukhdev Panse of the Congress, Sunilam of Samajwadi Party and Hemant Khandelwal of Bharatiya Janata Pary had threatened the Pardhis of dire consequences if they returned to their village.

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