Leaving the BJP in Madhya Pradesh red-faced, police have arrested a party leader and four of his relatives for allegedly slaughtering a cow at his home in Tonkkhurd, about 30km from Dewas.
Anwar Mev alias Anna, who was associated with the party’s minority cell in the district, was “quickly expelled” for “the major crime” by the BJP on Thursday, a day after a raid at his house led to the recovery of beef, said a party leader.
Two more accused were taken into custody on Thursday with the police looking for the remaining three accused. Those arrested, including Anwar, were sent to judicial custody by a local magistrate on Thursday.
Investigating Officer Vijay Sisodia told The Indian Express that Anwar and nine others, including eight relatives, were booked under the state’s anti-cow slaughter law and relevant sections of the IPC and the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals law.
Quoting a primary report of the local government veterinary hospital, Sisodia said the samples seized from Anwar’s home was cow meat but added that the samples would be sent to a laboratory in Mathura for confirmation.
Police said they raided Anwar’s house after being tipped off by a passer-by about a cow being slaughtered in the house. They recovered meat that the occupants reportedly tried to hide in the bathroom among other spots, police said.
The accused claimed that the meat seized was not beef, police said, adding that a slaughter licence held by Mev had long expired.
Sisodia said the meat was kept in three parcels. “The veterinary hospital has prima facie found it to be cow meat. We will wait for the laboratory report from Mathura,’’ he said.
Dewas district BJP chief Gopikrishna Vyas said, “It did not matter what responsibility he had but we quickly expelled him after he committed a major crime.’’
The recovery of beef caused tension in the town with right-wing activists calling for a bandh. Extra police force rushed to the town on Wednesday was deployed even on Thursday as a precautionary measure.
The administration called a peace committee meeting in the evening with both communities demanding action against Anwar.