Probe into Haryana bombings reveals role of cow shelters

Accused say ‘instigated’ by a gaushala head to attack mosque,madrasa

Written by Varinder Bhatia | Jind | Published:February 22, 2012 1:06 am

Investigations into the bombings of several Muslim sites in Haryana’s Jind and Mewat districts in 2009-10 have led the police to a network of gaushalas or cow shelters dotting the region,some of which appear to have played a part in indoctrinating and inspiring the alleged bombers.

The five alleged bombers arrested in Patiala last week on the initial charge of planning a dacoity were produced in a Jind court today. The five men — members of a cow protection group called Azad Sangathan — have given police names of six accomplices,all of whom are on the run.

The arrested men are learnt to have told interrogators that they were “instigated and motivated” to carry out attacks on a mosque,madrasa and slaughterhouse by a man called Swami Dayanand,allegedly the head of a gaushala in Mewat district’s Nuh tehsil.

Dayanand is under the scanner,as are the heads of two other gaushalas in the region,sources in the state police said. None of the three has been questioned yet. Police sources said the gaushalas might have paid the five men a few thousand rupees each to carry out the attacks.

The men — leader Sagar alias Azad alias Kala and his associates Rajesh Kumar,Sham Niwas,Praveen Sharma and Gurnam Singh — were produced before chief judicial magistrate Basruddin who remanded Sagar and Rajesh in the custody of Safidon police in connection with a blast in the town in 2009,and sent the others to jail.

“It has been revealed during interrogation that six more persons — Kismat,Surender,Ajay,Pawan,Sonu and an unidentified man — helped Sagar and his associates in executing the serial blasts. Most of them belong to Jind district and are members of Sagar’s group. The role played by gaushalas and their heads is under investigation too,” investigating officer Inspector Rohtash Singh said.

Besides Dayanand,under the scanner are Swami Gorakshanand and Swami Ganeshanand,both gaushala heads based in Uchana village in Jind. Police sources said they were investigating information that Sagar and his associates were regular visitors to both gaushalas,and might have used them as bases to plan their attacks.

Gorakshanand denied knowing anything about the Azad Sangathan. “I am not aware of any such activity by Sagar or his friends. I have been based in this gaushala for the last 40-50 years. We run ashrams in Haridwar and Kurukshetra,and gaushalas in Jind,” he told The Indian Express.

Villagers in Uchana claimed Ganeshanand had passed away recently.

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