The driver of a car, which was “carrying two calves” when it met with an accident three days ago in Anandnagar area of Ahmedabad, died on Friday at V S Hospital due to severe injuries. He was also assaulted by unidentified people after the accident on September 13.
Another man who was with the victim in the car has told police that they were being chased by a group of gau rakshaks or cow vigilantes, but investigators disputed his claim, saying CCTV footage from nine major traffic junctions showed “nothing suspicious”.
According to Joint Commissioner of Police Rajiv Ranjan Bhagat, following the accident at Crown Plaza on SG Highway, passersby discovered two calves “stuffed” in the car. “Some unidentified people had beaten Mohammed Ayyub (deceased) and Samir Shaikh before they were taken into police custody and admitted to the hospital,” he said. Shaikh is still in police custody. Police said a team of officials from the fire department had to cut open the car from behind to take out the animals. One calf is said to have died following the accident.
According to police, Ayyub suffered serious injuries due to the accident and also because of the assault. Shaikh has told the police that a group of cow vigilantes had “chased them and hit their car from behind near Honest circle at S G Highway”. Police, however, said Shaikh is highly “unreliable as he has cooked up a story”.
“We are looking into the case from all possible angles. So far, the angle of cow vigilantes has not cropped up. We have found that Ayyub and Shaikh were coming from Mehsana with two calves hidden in the back of their car. Shaikh told us that he had taken a lift from Ayyub from somewhere near Adalaj, but his call detail records showed that both were in touch over phone. In fact, phone data has confirmed Shaikh’s presence right from Mehsana from where they were coming till the scene of the offence,” said DCP ( Zone-2) Vidhi Chaudhari.
She said Shaikh claimed to have been chased from Adalaj till the spot where the accident happened. However, after checking CCTV footage obtained from nine major traffic junctions, nothing suspicious was found.
WATCH: Man ‘Carrying Calves’ In Car Dies After Accident And Assault In Gujarat
However, advocate Shamshad Pathan, speaking on behalf of Shaikh, claimed otherwise. He said that the two men were chased by cow vigilantes and “thrashed brutally resulting into the death of Ayyub”. He alleged that Ayyub passed away at 5 pm on Friday, but no police official from Anandnagar police station came to check him.
VHP city president Rajubhai Patel said that gau rakshaks were being wrongly blamed in the case. “Gau rakshaks reached the spot at least three hours after the accident in the presence of policemen and then lodged FIR for illegally ferrying animals,” he said.
“Those who killed my brother were indeed gau rakshaks. My brother was not carrying any cow or calf. Out of some grudge, these gau rakshaks mercilessly thrashed him. We want the police to nab the real culprits,” Ayyub’s brother Imran was quoted as saying by PTI.