Patna: A juvenile court in Bihar has asked a delinquent to teach Dalit children and serve patients at a government hospital for six months for getting involved in the illegal trade of liquor.
The government enforced a statewide liquor prohibition last year, with active support from all political parties.
The court passed the order to a minor boy from eastern Bihar’s Sheikhpur district after he confessed his guilt. It also considered his age.
As per the order, the minor will have to teach Dalit children from his village two hours a day in the evening for three months.
Over the next three months, he will also have to serve patients admitted to the physiotherapy department of the local government hospital.
“During the trial of the case, the accused boy confessed his guilt and promised not to repeat his mistake in future,” the local public prosecutor A.K. Dube told journalists on Monday.
The accused, who hails from Baruna village under Ariari police station in the district, was caught running an illegal brewing centre.
This is the first time that a culprit has been told by the court to teach the Dalit children who are considered the most backward class in matters of development.
The ruling Nitish Kumar government in Bihar has identified as a total of 21 castes in the Mahadalit category — the poorest of the poor.
The ruling government has also formed a Bihar Mahadalit Vikas Mission to ameliorate their condition.
Social scientists have hailed the order of the court saying it would promote social harmony.
Bihar has seen more than 100 massacres in a bitter caste wars between the Maoists representing the Dalit section of the society and the now defunct Ranvir Sena, a private militia of the upper caste Bhumihars.
Last month, another such court in southern Bihar’s Aurangabad district had asked a delinquent to wipe floors of a Hindu temple for six months as a punishment for working for Maoist army and opening fire on the cops. A few cops were alleged to have sustained injuries in the court.