New Delhi: Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Thursday urged Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath to ensure stringent punishment to those who beat to death two Dalit children in the state for defecating near a village panchayat.

Two Dalit children, who did not have a toilet at home, were allegedly beaten to death by two upper-caste men for defecating near a village panchayat building in Madhya Pradesh's Shivpuri district on Wednesday, police said.

"Being a mother, I am deeply saddened by the cruelty and inhumanity of this incident. What was the fault of these children and what would be their mother going through? I request Kamal Nath ji to ensure stringent punishment and that such violent and condemnable incidents do not take place," Priyanka Gandhi said in a tweet in Hindi.

The incident took place in the evening at Bhavkedhi, 25 km from the district headquarters. The village, according to locals, had been declared as Open Defecation Free (ODF) on April 4, 2018.

The two alleged assailants, Hakam Yadav and his brother Rameshwar Yadav, were arrested soon after the incident, police said.