Three police personnel have been suspended until an investigation into the death of Dalit youth Bijay Ram Chamar in police custody is completed.

Bijay Ram was arrested for his alleged involvement in the murder of Niranjan Ram. Niranjan Ram was found dead on August 16 at Jigdiday of Garuda, Rautahat.

Inspector Nabin Kumar Singh, head constables Hiroj Miya Dhuniya and Mannu Kumar Singh stationed at Rautahat District Police Office have been suspended for their suspected involvement in torturing the Dalit youth in custody.

According to the District Police Office, Rautahat, secretary-level meeting of the Home Ministry had decided to suspend Inspector Singh for six months while head-constable duo Hiroj and Mannu Kumar are suspended until investigation into the incident is over.

Meanwhile, leaders of the local Dalit community have been staging a fast-unto-death protest demanding justice for Chamar for the past five days.

They have alleged that Chamar was physically tortured to death by the police.

Chamar died on August 26 midnight during the course of treatment at National Medical College, Birgunj. Police had taken him to the hospital stating that the Dalit youth was suffering from renal problems.

Police have been saying that Chamar died in the course of treatment for a kidney ailment but a video of Chamar, which was taken in hospital prior to his death, shows him saying that he was tortured by plainclothes cops and forced to confess to the murder Niranjan.

“We won’t end the hunger strike until the central government suspends and takes action against SP Rabiraj Khadka, DSP Gyan Kumar Mahato, along with the inspectors, ASIs and head constables involved in torturing the innocent youth to death,” said Bahujan Shakti Party central Chairperson and former minister Bisendra Paswan, one of the protestors.

The protestors have also demanded martyr status for both Niranjan and Bijaya, compensation to the families of the deceased and job guarantee to at least one person from their families.