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Boy, 9, dies after being brutally beaten by 'higher-caste' teacher for TOUCHING his water pot

The disturbing incident took place on July 20 at a private school in Surana village in the Jalore district of Rajasthan in India
The child, identified as Indra Meghwal, was taken to a hospital for treatment, but died during treatment on Saturday (riteshjyotii/Twitter)
The child, identified as Indra Meghwal, was taken to a hospital for treatment, but died during treatment on Saturday (riteshjyotii/Twitter)

RAJASTHAN, INDIA: A nine-year-old 'Dalit' boy who was brutally beaten by an upper-caste teacher for touching his drinking water pot at a private school succumbed to his injuries on Saturday, August 13.

The shocking incident took place on July 20 at a private school in Surana village in the Jalore district of Rajasthan, India. The child, identified as Indra Meghwal, was taken to a hospital, but died during treatment on Saturday, police said. The perp, identified as 40-year-old Chail Singh, has since been arrested and charged with murder under sections of the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. Authorities suspended internet access in the area to prevent the situation from escalating further.


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The FIR in the case stated the child was beaten up by his upper-caste tutor for allegedly drinking water out of a pot meant for the teacher. The victim was admitted to the Ahmedabad Civil Hospital on Saturday morning but declared dead during treatment. “The post-mortem was completed on Saturday and a viscera sample has been sent for further testing. The exact cause of death can be ascertained only after the test results come in,” Rajnish Patel, Additional Medical Superintendent at the hospital, said in a statement.


The accused, who was arrested on Saturday, reportedly ran the private school where the child was a student in the third grade. Singh owned the school and also taught there while living in a village around 20 miles away. Devastated family members claimed that they were asked by the upper-caste 'Rajputs' of their village -- the community to which the teacher belonged -- to not go to the police and settle out of court. “A few days ago, there was a gathering of around 40 people from the Rajput, Dewasi, and Meghwal communities at the school. My father and I went to this gathering. The Rajputs told us not to register a case since our children still study at the school. They told us to reach a compromise with the teacher. The teacher gave us Rs 1.5 lakh (~$1,900) in two installments and said he was ready to pay another lakh (~$1,260) for Indra’s treatment,” said the boy's uncle Kishore Kumar Meghwal, as quoted by Indian Express.

However, Kishore said that when he confronted the teacher, the latter accepted that "he has made a mistake." The FIR stated, “Indra was a child, he didn’t know that the matki (earthen pot) that he drank from had been kept separately for the savarna jaati (upper caste) teacher. Indra mistakenly drank water from the matki of Chail Singh." It further noted how the teacher abused him with casteist slurs and viciously beat him up. The child sustained internal injuries to his right ear and eye as a result of the assault.


The death of the child, who was reportedly the youngest of three siblings, sparked widespread outrage against the Congress-led government in the state. Dalit rights activists blasted the government for the compensation amount of INR 5 lakh (~$6300) that Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot announced for the victim's family. An inquiry into the matter has been initiated by the state education department. Rajasthan SC Commission chairman Khiladi Lal Bairwa has ordered the case to be taken up under a new scheme for fast investigation. 


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The boy's father revealed how the child sustained injuries to his face and ear and drifted in and out of consciousness. He was initially taken to the district hospital, which referred the family to a bigger hospital in Udaipur. "He remained admitted at the hospital in Udaipur for about a week, but seeing no improvement, we took him to Ahmedabad. But his condition did not improve even there and he finally succumbed on Saturday," a heartbroken Devaram said, as quoted by Indian Express. The state education department has assigned two officials to investigate the incident and submit a report to the block education officer.

If you or anyone you know suspects child abuse, you are urged to immediately call the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child or 1-800-422-4453, or go to All calls are toll-free and confidential and the hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.