Speaking to reporters, the Chief Minister alleged that in the Pehlu Khan lynching case, in which all the accused were acquitted, the previous BJP government in the state “deliberately” left shortcomings to “save the accused”.
The decision on constituting the SIT was taken following a high-level meeting chaired by Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot at the chief minister’s office on Friday evening, two days after a court in Alwar district acquitted all six men accused of murdering Khan.
On April 1, 2017, Khan and his companions — including his sons — were attacked by cow vigilantes in Alwar for transporting cattle. The incident invited nationwide outrage when Khan died two days after the attack.
Rajasthan had witnessed a spurt in lynchings in 2017, beginning with dairy farmer Pehlu Khan in April 2017. The Bill, tabled by Cabinet minister Shanti Dhariwal on July 30, was discussed Monday and subsequently passed by voice vote.
On Saturday, Inspector General of Police (Jaipur range) S Sengathir told The Indian Express that the cow smuggling chargesheet did name Khan, but given that “a dead man can’t be tried... therefore we haven’t chargesheeted Khan”.
Lawyer Asad Hayat was in a vehicle with witnesses Azmat (28), Rafiq (25) and Pehlu’s sons Irshad (28) and Arif (21). They were headed to the ADJ court in Behror on September 29 when they were allegedly attacked.