The 17-year-old Dalit girl, who was attacked by her boyfriend’s brother in Mettupalayam a few days ago, has succumbed to her injuries. The girl, Varshini Priya, who was undergoing treatment at Coimbatore Medical College and Hospital, succumbed to her injuries on Saturday. Her boyfriend Kanagaraj (22) was also killed in the attack on Tuesday.
Varshini Priya and Kanagaraj were in a relationship for over a year and were planning to get married soon. Hailing from Mettupalayam, Kanagaraj belonged to the Valaiyar community, which is a Backward Class community in Tamil Nadu, and Varshini Priya was from the Arundathiyar community, which is a Scheduled Caste. Though both their parents initially were opposed to the relationship, however, Kanagaraj’s parents gradually accepted their relationship and were planning to get the couple married soon. However, Kanagaraj’s elder brother Vinoth was opposed to the union from the beginning since he did not like that his brother will be marrying a Dalit girl.
On June 25, when the couple was walking down the road, Vinoth approached them and picked an argument with Kanagaraj over his relationship. Infuriated by the argument, Vinoth pulled out a machete and hacked his brother to death and attacked Varshini Priya as well. Kanagaraj, who suffered severe injuries to his neck and head, died on the spot, while Varshini Priya was rushed to a nearby hospital and then referred to the Coimbatore Medical College and Hospital due to the severity of her injuries.
Vinoth, who was absconding immediately since the attack, was arrested in the wee hours of June 26. The police registered an FIR under Sections 302 (Murder) and 307 (Attempt to murder) of the IPC and the relevant provisions of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.
Varshini Priya’s mother Amudha has also written to the State Human Rights Commission on Wednesday stating that Vinoth and his relative had come to her house and used filthy language to abuse them and issued death threats to her family. She demanded justice, compensation and protection for herself and her family in the aftermath of the incident.
Varshini Priya’s body has been kept at the morgue at Coimbatore Medical College and Hospital and will be sent for postmortem.