The Rajasthan High Court has granted bail to the last two persons held in the Pehlu Khan lynching case.
Earlier, three people were granted bail by the high court and two by a juvenile court. Two other accused are untraceable.
Bail was granted to Dayanand, 47, and Yogesh Kumar, 30, on September 18 “on the ground that their case was similar to others who were granted bail before them. It was no different. The high court accepted our plea and granted them bail,” said Harendra Singh, the advocate for the accused.
Pehlu and four others, among them his two sons, were returning from a cattle fair on Jaipur’s outskirts on April 1 and were headed to their homes in Haryana when they were attacked by cow vigilantes in Alwar’s Behror. The mob, accusing them to be cattle smugglers, beat them up. Pehlu died two days later.
The first among the accused to be granted bail was Ravindra, on July 12, followed by Kaluram on August 9 and Vipin on August 31.
Arguing for Ravindra, former Bar Council of India Chairman Biri Singh Sinsinwar had said the petitioner wasn’t named in the FIR and he was seen at Jagwas crossing in a similar incident involving cow vigilantes an hour before Pehlu was lynched at Shaheed Ramkumar crossing, 1 km from Jagwas crossing.
Moreover, no incriminating recovery was made from Ravindra, his counsel said. Ravindra’s bail set the stage for the bail of Kaluram.
While senior advocate V R Bajwa, along with Amir Aziz and the public prosecutor had argued against Ravindra’s bail plea, Kaluram’s plea was opposed by Aziz and the public prosecutor.
Curiously, when it came to Vipin’s bail plea, no private lawyer could be roped in by Pehlu’s family. “When Vipin’s hearing was listed, I informed them (Pehlu family) about the case but they could not take it up through a lawyer,” Aziz said. “This made the bail process easier for petitioners.”
In the court, the petitioners argued that Vipin’s case was similar to Ravindra and Kaluram’s and he was given bail, but Aziz said the counsel for petitioner misled the court.
“Even if we assume that Ravindra and Kaluram were not on the spot, how can Vipin’s case be similar to them when a stick allegedly used in the assault was found with him,” Aziz said.
According to the chargesheet filed by Behror SHO Ramesh Sinsinwar, the police found a wooden stick in Vipin’s home that was hidden below a bed.
“The entire investigation has been botched by the police. Those who were named in the FIR were given a clean chit while those arrested are now being let out on bail as they are not named in the FIR,” Aziz said.