MP: Tribal Dies by Suicide After Forest Dept Razed his PMAY Sanctioned House
Representational Image. Image Courtesy: PTI
Bhopal: A 45-year-old tribal allegedly committed suicide in Madhya Pradesh’s Khargone on Tuesday afternoon after a sleuth of Forest Department officials razed his under-constructed home sanctioned under the Union government's flagship housing scheme PM Awas Yojana.
According to the police, the deceased was identified as Dhyan Singh Dawar (45), a resident of Navalpura village and had been living there for the last six years with a family of four. After the demolition, they started living in a wooden tent alongside the debris of the demolished house.
Singh's body was found hanging from a tree close to the tent by his wife when she returned home from the field.
A 45-YO Tribal Dhyan Singh committed suicide on T'Day after Forest officials razed his under-construction home granted under "PM Awas Yojana."
Forest Dept claimed that the home was built on encroached land which was removed a month ago.
DM ordered judicial probe.
— काश/if Kakvi (@KashifKakvi) October 26, 2022
The deceased’s son, Raju Singh Dawar, alleged that the forest department had demolished their house sanctioned under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY) without prior notice and beat up his parents.
"A month ago, they (forest officials) razed my under-construction home and assaulted my mother and father. We complained to the district collector with a memorandum soon after the incident, but it went in vain. Since then, my father had been upset," Raju told Newsclick over the call.
He further said, "They handed over a notice after demolishing the under-constructed home and sought a reply from us. Tomorrow was the last date for filing the reply, which we failed to comply with. Assuming that the forest officials may again assault him and his family, he died by suicide. He informed my grandfather before taking the extreme step, saying, ‘Mai Pareshan Ho gaya hu in sab se’ (I am disturbed by all this)."
The family claimed that the construction of their house was started after Dhyan Singh received Rs 75,000 under the PMAY in two instalments.
After his suicide, Khargone Collector Kumar Purushottam ordered a magisterial inquiry into it and sought a report within 15 days, said Kasrawad’s sub-divisional officer (revenue) Agrim Kumar.
He said the collector also sanctioned immediate financial assistance of Rs 25,000 for the deceased’s family from the District Red Cross fund and initiated a process to provide other help per the rules.
Forest department officials claimed that Dhyan Singh was building a home on encroached forest land and it was removed by the department a month ago. "The encroachment was removed about a month back and a notice had also been served to the man to know his version," said Divisional Forest Officer Prashant Kumar Singh to PTI.
Gopalpura’s panchayat secretary Munnalal Sisodia said the deceased was allocated an amount as the first instalment under the PMAY for the house, but the forest department demolished the initial construction.
Locals and tribal outfits staged a protest and blocked the road accusing forest department officials of harassing him. Villagers alleged that the forest department had demolished the house's initial construction sanctioned under PMAY.
Tribal political outfit Jai Adivasi Yuva Shakti’s leader Dayaram Kurku said that they have submitted a memorandum to the administration and demanded registration of a case of abetment of suicide against the forest officials.
"On September 30, we gave a written complaint addressing the SDM over the incident of assault and home demolition. If they had taken cognisance over our complaint and addressed it, Dhyan Singh would be alive," Kurku told NewsClick over the call.
The outfit also demanded a government job for the son of the deceased and assistance of Rs 50 lakh for the family. "We want to take the body (of Dhyan Singh) to Collector's office demanding justice, but police stopped us," Kurku added.
Villagers ended the protest after local administration officials persuaded them with assurance.
Khargone’s Superintendent of Police Dharmveer Singh said the police were investigating the case from all possible angles.
(With PTI inputs)
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