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Jharkhand again: How a lynch mob almost killed a Muslim

Saiful Haque | Updated on: 29 June 2017, 13:57 IST
(Arya Sharma/Catch News)

The lynchwagon just rolls on. This time it paid a return visit to Jharkhand. the Bharatiya Janata Party-ruled state that already made a recent round of lynching headlines due to rumours of child lifting. This time it was 'cow' though.

It started with a cadaver on Tuesday. In Bariabad village (Giridih district), the remains of a dead cow was lying outside the house of Usman Ansari. A mob gathered and, assuming Ansari killed the cow, started pounced upon him and set his house ablaze. The police did reach the spot, but by then the situation was out of control. Ansari was eventually left critically wounded.

He was hospitalised after the cops dispersed a stone-pelting crowd by firing in the air. 

Hate crime

This act of wanton violence in a village, just 200 kms from Ranchi, is the latest in the long list of hate crimes against Muslims in the country.

“A mob carrying sticks and stones and shouting 'Jai Shri Ram' descended on 55-year-old Ansari's house and severely thrashed him,” said Akhilesh B Variar, superintendent of Giridih Police.

“By the time police reached on the spot, the crowd had set ablaze a part of his house and the situation was uncontrollable,” he added.

The mob even charged at the policemen and they had to resort to lathi-charge and air firing to quell the mob so that the victim and his family could be saved.

“When the police tried to take Ansari to the hospital, the crowd resisted and heavy stone-pelting started. We had to shoot in the air,” said Variar.

“Two men were injured, both in their legs, in the police firing and are in the hospital as well. About 40 policemen were also injured in the stone pelting,” he added.

Ansari and another person identified as Krishna Pandit, who was injured in police firing, have been shifted to a hospital in Dhanbad for better treatment. Both are said to be in stable condition.

Lynch mobocracy

This incident comes less than a month after paranoid mobs lynched nine people on the suspicion of child lifting in separate incidents across the tribal state.

Bariabad village now has heavy security. Over 200 security personnel along with senior police officers have been deployed to ensure law and order. Till now, police have arrested around 30 people who they will be questioning about the attack.

Condemning the brutality of the mob, ex-cabinet minister Subodh Kant Sahay of Congress said, “This is exactly what the BJP government wants to see the country. The string of incidents are taking place largely against Muslim and Dalits across the country just because the BJP-led government is patronising them.”

Voicing similar sentiments, formers chief ministers Hemant Soren of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha and Babulal Marandi of Jharkhand Vikas Morcha said such incidents continue to take place in BJP-ruled states.

“We strongly condemn this incident. These lynchings continue to take place in all BJP-ruled states.

Demanding the resignation of Jharkhand CM Raghuvar Das, they said, “ The CM should immediately resign as he is incapable of saving the state from such untoward incidents. A series of such incidents have already taken place but till now nothing has been done.”

With incidents of cow vigilantism on the rise, Das had said earlier that the government was trying to do its best to prevent such situations.

“No one will be left if involved in violence the law will have to do its job.”

However, about this incident, Das only commented that the police has started a probe and that the culprits would be punished.

First published: 29 June 2017, 13:57 IST