Chikkaballapur, Nov 26: A 28-year-old man died after coming in contact with the electric fence of a tomato farm in Charakamattenahalli, Gauribidanur taluk of Chikkaballapur district. Hours later, the angry kin of the deceased youth beat the farm owner to death with wooden logs.
With tomato prices more than doubling and fetching Rs 200 per kg in auctions, the farm owner, Aswath Rao, 47, had erected an electric fence to protect his crop.
Cowherd Vasanth Rao from the same village was electrocuted when he came in contact with the fence on Wednesday night. As the news of Vasanth’s death spread on Thursday morning, his angry relatives rushed to the tomato farm where Aswath was resting.
The mob attacked him and caused him grievous injuries. Other villagers rushed Aswath to hospital, where he succumbed.
Chikkaballapur SP GK Mithun Kumar said Aswath had grown tomato on his one-acre land. Police sources said amid the rising tomato prices, growers in the district also have to contend with robbers who steal the fruits.
Mithun Kumar, however, said it was illegal to erect a live electric fence around farmlands. He has asked Bescom authorities to take steps to prevent people from resorting to such steps as it could result in loss of not only lives but also cattle heads.