June 30th, 2017
Jharkhand: A man accused of carrying beef was beaten to death in Ramgarh district Tuesday. The deceased, Alimuddin alias Asgar Ansari, was allegedly carrying the “banned meat” in a Maruti van when a self-acclaimed mob of Gau Rakshaks stopped him near Bajartand village. He was brutally attacked and his van was set on fire, said the police, as reported by India Today.
The police personnel took him to a hospital, but Asgar died during treatment. The murder was premeditated, as per Additional Director General of Police R K Mallik. “Asgar was charge sheeted for child abduction and murder,” the officer said, adding that some people involved in beef trade hatched a conspiracy to kill him. “The killers have been identified.”
The police could not confirm if Asgar was carrying beef. The women of the village in Ramgarh district, as reported by The Citizen, came out in support of the grieving and terrified wife and children of the 50-year-old driver Alimuddin. They formed a front line, refusing to accept the dead body in a night-long standoff with the cops, demanding the police register an FIR and arrest the guilty first. Unprepared for the protest, the cops left without the body and came back with Rs 2 lakh compensation to Alimuddin’s widow. However, the women refused the money and demanded justice instead.
In another incident in the state, a man accused of raping and murdering an 8-year-old girl was allegedly lynched to death by a mob in the Ramgarh thana of Dumka district on Wednesday.
Local newspaper Prabhat Khabar reported that the minor girl had come to Jalwe village in the district for a wedding. She, along with a few other girls, went to a nearby lake from the ceremony to take a bath. This is when Mithun Hansda allegedly, in a drunken state, misbehaved with them.
While the other girls managed to run away, Hansda kidnapped the 8-year-old, took her to the bank of a river outside the village and allegedly raped her. He is then suspected to have killed her and thrown her dead body among the trees of the river bank.
According to the local newspaper, Hansda joined the party after the alleged crime, but as the girl did not return, her family started looking for her.
In the meanwhile, the other girls revealed Hansda’s misdemeanour to the villagers, who then confronted him, but he denied raping the girl. On Wednesday, the villagers again approached Hansda, tied him to a tree and brutally beat him until he died. As per Prabhat Khabar, Hansda had allegedly confessed to raping and killing the girl. Over twenty people have been booked for murder.
The two lynchings happened after a Dairy farmer was beaten and his house burnt down in a Jharkhand village on Tuesday afternoon. The attack took place after the carcas of a headless cow was allegedly found near Usman Ansari’s residence.
Last month, on May 18, two separate lynchings killed seven citizens and injured at least six others. The attacks stemmed from a spate of WhatsApp rumours over alleged “child abductors” who had infiltrated the area.
Bihar: Two middle-aged men were lynched at 1 am on Thursday at Parasia village under Kochas police station of Rohtas district, Bihar on a mere suspicion that they were thieves. The incident took place about 170 km south-west of state capital, Patna.
As reported by Hindustan Times, the deceased were brothers and Mahar Dalits – Musahars, who are regarded as the most depressed among the Dalit community and so financially backward that they were traditionally known to subsist on a diet of mice which they used to hunt for a living.
The police identified them as Baban Musahar, 40, and Murahu Musahar, 35. They were accused of entering a house after burrowing through a wall to conduct theft.
Satish Kumar, Kochas station house officer, said that the preliminary investigations suggested that the villagers raised an alarm when two men were caught trying to enter a house at such an early hour. The brother panicked and tried to run away, but the locals caught up with them and brutally assaulted them. Both of them died while receiving treatment.
The police said that the mob dispersed only after they rushed to the scene. A case of murder has been lodged against unidentified persons and the police are attempting to establish the identities of the attackers.
The Logical Indian take
The four deaths are among the list of murders caused by a mob which believes that it has the impunity to take the law into its own hand.
The violence occurred despite the outrage caused by “targeted lynchings” and assaults. On June 28, citizens across the country took part in a protest – Not In My Name – in hopes that people will be made aware of the crimes and the perpetrators will be staunchly informed that such acts favour no one, but are only executed to satisfy false pride.
Despite all of this, nothing stopped people from resorting to violent mob justice.
In Jharkhand, when Usman Ansari was beaten and his house was burnt down, nearly a thousand people united to attack him because of their common belief.
As individuals living in a society, unity is essential, but not one which is stemmed from hate. In the brutal murder of 15-year-old Junaid Khan too, there were multiple witnesses, but no one stepped up to report against the criminals – they too were united in hate.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke against the lynchings, terming them as “unacceptable” in the land of non-violence and Gandhi. While a statement from the PM was long overdue and crucial, it will take a lot more than a statement for India to rid itself of the plague of mob violence.
While in the case of Mithun Hansda, it is alleged that he had raped and murdered the 8-year-old, however, his punishment should have been decided by the judiciary of our country and not a mob that believed that taking the law into its own hand is justified.
We need stringent punishments against those who resort to such acts of violence. To uphold the safety of citizens, law and order need to be established. In the meanwhile, people from all strata of life need to be educated and made aware of the evils of discrimination on the basis of caste or creed.