//Dalits released after six months 'wrongful confinement'

Dalits released after six months 'wrongful confinement'

Moga: Ten Dalits including three women and an eight-month-old boy, confined in jail since September for electricity theft and non-payment of power bills, were ordered released today after police moved court and dropped charges against them.

Judicial Magistrate B K Bhatia directed the Ferozepur Central Jail authorities to release all the 10 accused while accepting the discharge plea of the police that said they were "wrongfully confined" and no evidence of was found against them in the case.

They were arrested from Landheke village in the district on allegations of power board officials of electricity theft and non-payment of bills in September last year, evoking strong protests from the Pendu Mazdoor Union and Punjab Kirti Kaisan Union.

Members of the unions went on an indefinite sit-in in front of the Deputy Commissioner’s office here demanding their unconditional release and it was lifted on March 20 when Senior Superintendent of Police Moga Pawan Kumar Rai ordered an inquiry.

The probe found "no evidence" against the arrested Dalits following which the police filed a discharge petition.