Nagaland Mob Lynching: A Cruel & Misguided Society Looking For Desperate Solutions
On 4 March, a mob of about 7000-8000 people broke into a prison, dragged a rape accused out of the Dimapur Central Jail, paraded him naked for over seven kilometers and beat him to death in a case of vigilante (in)justice. The mob did not stop there and displayed the man’s badly bruised body at the local clock tower.
On 11 March the Nagaland government submitted a report to Union Home Ministry stating that “Syed Arif Khan did not rape the woman” and it “appeared to be a case of consensual sex”. However, the report adds that investigations are still on into the woman’s complaint and that the police were awaiting forensic reports. There are cctv footages of the woman and man entering and leaving the hotel room together.
Important Facts of the Dimapur lynching case and inferences of The Logical Indian from them:
•Why should the CM of Nagaland not be sacked? The total population of Nagaland is about 20 lacs. The population of Dimapur is 3.75 lacs which translates to about 70000 families. If reports are correct then at least one member from every 7 family participated in the lynching and murder. The CM clearly seems to have been caught napping. To add insult to injury and dishonesty to bigotry, he tried to pass off a simple communal crime as a more acceptable hate crime against Bangladeshis, not realizing that two brothers of the accused man were serving on the Indian Army.
•Syed was arrested with one Naga man but the mob only picked on him. It shows that the anger of beastly mob was not towards the rapist but had a xenophobic basis. Syed Arif Khan was arrested on 24t February on charges of rape and then he was lynched on 5 March.” All newspapers had written about this March 5 rally and everyone knew about it. The previous day, some girls had staged a protest in front of the deputy commissioner’s office. It was then that they had announced their next day’s plan. The government was either part of the conspiracy or didn’t act at the right time. For ten days the conspirators got chance to fabricate a lie and manipulate the masses right under the government’s nose.
•On 8 March, the body of the man was buried in his village. About, 4000 Bengali Muslims had left Nagaland by then, fearing attacks. This shows how hate is spreading in the society and people are under constant threat under because of these hate mongers.
•The lynching happened because the Indian state has been unable to make the rule of law stick anywhere. Nagaland, for example, is one of the most highly policed states, with the army having a strong and permanent presence there in order to control the local secessionist movements. But the rule of law does not operate here, just as it does not in the rest of India, to varying degrees.
The mob consisted of men, women, boys & girls with ages varying from 13-60. They were clicking pictures and they were very much excited with the lynching. They seemed to have no sense of shame in what they were doing. Even social media was not very far behind in behaving like the mad mob, many shared the violent graphics of the bleeding victim, earning encouragement from others who felt this was justice without realising the fact that these photographs are accessible even by minors.
What is left now?
A blot on humanity & family of the dead victim who has to live with this trauma for rest of their life.
What has changed after the incident?
Nothing, the next day newspapers headline read: “After Nagaland lynching, mob in Agra beats alleged molester to death “