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Lalit Mehta worked for Jharkhand's poor (part 1)

 Apalm-sized CD has become the prized possession of Jagdish Mehta, the father of social activist Lalit Mehta, who was brutally murdered in Kandra jungles of Palamu district in Jharkhand on May 14. His eyes gleam as he holds the CD in his hands. It contains a record of a damning social audit of an NREGS project in Chhatarpur block, and the old man hopes it may one day nail the culprits. “My son died fighting corruption. He was brutally murdered. What can a father ask for except justice? We gave him the best of education and Lalit utilized it to end poverty and corruption,” he says, tears welling up in his eyes.
 
A civil engineer by qualification, Lalit, 36, blew the lid off widespread corruption in nregs in Palamu. He had become a threat to the contractor lobby and corrupt government officials. Social audit of NREGS he undertook under economist Jean Drèze's supervision was proving to be the final nail in the coffin of the contractor lobby. But before that he was killed.
 
The Chhatarpur Police found his body at Kandaghati in Chhatarpur on May 15. His mutilated body and a belt around his neck suggested he was strangled and his face smashed to deform it beyond recognition. The police buried the body as unidentified the same day. It was later exhumed by his colleagues and taken to his native village, where his last rites were performed.
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Update : 14-04-2017

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