A first information report (FIR) has been registered against a businesswoman and her employees in Morbi town for allegedly forcing a Dalit man to hold her footwear in his mouth and apologise, when he asked for his pending salary.
The accused businesswoman has been identified as Vibhuti Patel, alias Raniba, who runs a private firm called Raniba Industries Private Limited. The victim, Nilesh Dalsaniya, had worked in the exports department of Patel’s firm for 16 days in October.
On October 2, when Dalsaniya joined the firm, he was promised a salary of Rs 12,000 per month. However, on October 18, he was informed that his services were no longer required.
On Wednesday evening (November 24), Dalsaniya, along with his elder brother Mehul and their neighbour Bhavesh Makwana, went to the office of Raniba Industries on Ravapar Road to demand his salary for the days he had worked there.
Upon their arrival, a man named Om Patel, who identified himself as Vibhuti Patel’s brother, assaulted Dalsaniya. Subsequently, Vibhuti Patel, Parixit Patel (a manager at Raniba Industries), and four others also joined in the assault.
According to the FIR, the group dragged Dalsaniya to an elevator, took him to the terrace of the commercial building, and beat him up with a belt while also kicking and punching him.
“Vibhuti Patel forced me to take her chappal in my mouth and made me apologise,” Dalsaniya said in his complaint. “She threatened to kill me if I came to Ravapar Road or dared to file a complaint.”
Following the incident, Dalsaniya was admitted to the state-run Gujarat Medical Education and Research Society Hospital in Morbi.
Vibhuti Patel and her employees have been booked under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, including Sections 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace), 506(2) (criminal intimidation), 143 (unlawful assembly), 147 (rioting), and 149 (every member of an unlawful assembly guilty of the offence committed in prosecution of a common object). The Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act has also been invoked against them.
The Gujarat Police are currently investigating the case.