Remembering Delta Meghwal – An Unfinished Painting


On 29th March 2016, Delta Meghwal, a 17 years old Dalit girl from Barmer district of Rajasthan found dead. Delta was raped and murdered at the college, drowned in a water tank behind the girl’s hostel.  She was persuading her BSTC (a course after 10+2, to become a school teacher) from Jain Adarsh teacher training institute for girls in Nokha, Bikaner (Rajasthan).

Delta Meghwal was a brilliant student and an amazing painter, having excelled in an Art competition in Rajasthan when she was in 12th standard. One of her artwork was featured in an art magazine published by Rajasthan secretariat in 2006 when she was just 7 years old.

Delta Meghawal Painting

On the morning of March 29, her dead body was found in the water tank of her hostel under suspicious conditions. Police took her body in a municipal garbage carrying vehicle (tractor) without video graphing it. According to the institution, she committed suicide because they caught her in PT teacher Vijendra Kumar’s room, and they had warned both and asked them to write an apology. Now the question is, why did the Institution not inform her parents? Why did the Institute not sack the PT teacher and file a complaint against him as she was a minor?
According to the FIR filed by her parents, there were only 4 girls at the hostel as all the other girls had gone home and had not returned by then. She came back along with her father on the morning of 28th. Later in the evening, at 8 pm, she called her father and said that their Warden Priya Shukla had sent her to the PT Instructor’s room, to be his helper, with the excuse of cleaning the hostel. There PT teacher raped her. She seemed very scared while narrating the incident, according to her parents. Later, PT teacher was arrested but nothing has happened since then. When her parents got all the information of this incident, the Institute took written apology from both her and the PT Instructor with a statement that this happened with mutual consent. While her parents say that this is murder, as the institute neither sacked the PT Instructor nor informed them, being ignorant of the fact that she was a minor. According to them, to downplay the incident, the Institute murdered her as they are very influential people. The college’s owner Easwar Chand Ved is of course very influential man. He has four colleges and allegedly has been linked to RSS too.

In last 10 years or so rapes on Dalit women in Gujarat, a hub of Hindutav politics, have increased more than 500%.

According to the RTI reply, dated February 23, 2015 – provided by Deputy Superintendent of Police of DGP Office, G M Malek – the number of rape incidents against Dalit women have increased by 500%.
Rape of Dalit Women increased 500%

It is one year to the murder of Delta Meghwal and nothing has happened till now in the case. Her father has lost all the hopes of getting justice and public has forgotten.

While Mainstream media tried its best to suppress the news of Delta’s murder, there was an uproar to some extent among Dalits. Maybe it was because Dalits were angry and the memories of Rohith Vemula’s  institutional murder were fresh in their minds as Delta’s murder took place after around 2 months of the murder of Rohith Vemula. While protests and agitations created awareness among the Dalits about the Delta Meghwal’s case but afterward courts, which are dominated of Brahmins, are so slow to progress on the case and after a year nothing has come out yet. College tried its best to portray Delta’s murder as a suicide to save the teacher.
Delta Meghwal - Rahul Ganshi's Statement
At that time of protests last year, many political leaders had made big promised to fight for Delta Meghwal’s case, even Rahul Gandhi had said that he will fight till his last breath! But what is the reality? The case hasn’t moved ahead a bit. A country where 21 Dalit women are raped every week and 1100 rapes in a year on Dalit women, is there any hope of change in near future? According to another report around 70% of rape victims never get any justice. In many cases, Dalit women are blamed and even the behavior of Brahmin courts is not so good towards victims. Delta Meghwal’s painting, her story, has not finished yet and everyone who believes in equality and justice must come forward and fight for justice.

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