A group of right-wing goons have killed a Muslim man on the suspicion of cow smuggling in Rajasthan’s Alwar district.
35-year-old Pehlu Khan died in hospital on 3 April. Khan, the resident of Haryana’s Nuh was brutally beaten by a group of thugs posing themselves as cow vigilantes on the highway of Alwar in Rajasthan.
CAUGHT ON CAMERA: 100 Gau Rakshaks assault 15 Muslim men; Cow vigilantism kills 1 in Alwar, Rajasthan pic.twitter.com/BEjGjj8wR6
— News18 (@CNNnews18) April 5, 2017
Police said that others, who were attacked, were either undergoing treatment in hospital or had been taken in judicial custody.
In contrast, the attackers have not yet been arrested. The police said they had filed a case of murder against six individuals and 200 unknown people.
Shockingly, local reporters working for national TV channels were aware of the incident, which took place on 4 April, but the senior editors were reluctant to carry the news because of its adverse impact on the state’s BJP government led by Vasundhara Raje.
One reporter, who was one of the first journalists to get hold of the video, said, “Our editors weren’t keen to run the story in the beginning. My sense was that they didn’t want the BJP government’s image to be dented.”
Channels were forced to give adequate coverage to Janta Ka Reporter highlighted the news on all its social media platforms demanding police’s role.
According to reports, police personnel were allegedly seen laughing while goons mercilessly killed the Muslim man.
Vasundhara Raje government has now woken up to the ghastly act and has reportedly announced the formation of special teams to catch the culprits.
Raje’s home minister, GC Kataria, justified Khan’s murder saying that both the victim and the murderers were at fault.
He told ANI, “Both sides are guilty particularly when you know cow smuggling is unlawful. There are laws against it.”
Dono side se hai jab malum hai ki Rajasthan se gau taskari nhi ho sakti kanoon bana hua hai-GC Kataria on if cow vigilates took law in hands pic.twitter.com/yGJjE2Tfbz
— ANI (@ANI) April 5, 2017
Alwar collector Muktanand Agrawal, according to Hindustan Times, said that Khan was among the people transporting cows in six vehicles. Several media reports said that the Muslim men were not smuggling cows and, therefore, had not broken any laws.
BJP-governed states in India have actively called for severe punishment for those found to be slaughtering cows.
More recently, Chhattisgarh chief minister, Raman Singh, had called for the capital punishment for those who killed cows.
“Does such a thing happen in Chhattisgarh? I don’t think it has happened in the last 15 years (of BJP rule). If it happens, we will hang those who dare do it,” Singh told reporters in Raipur.
He was responding to queries by journalists whether his government would, like Yogi Adityanath’s in UP, take a tough stand on cow slaughter.
Rajasthan is governed by the BJP.