Updated: February 15, 2021 8:21:40 am
The Vishva Hindu Parishad Sunday gave an ultimatum to police to arrest all the accused in the murder of 25-year-old Mangolpuri resident Rinku Sharma within three days, while the Aam Aadmi Party claimed that he was killed for chanting Jai Shri Ram.
Police have so far found no credence in the claim made by AAP MLA and spokesperson Raghav Chadha, or the VHP’s and BJP’s assertion that Sharma was killed for participating in a Ram Mandir donation drive. Both the area additional DCP and Delhi Police PRO have said that prima facie investigation suggests Sharma was killed over an old business rivalry.
Speaking at a press conference, Chadha said, “Rinku’s family is saying he would chant Jai Shri Ram and was killed because of it. If what the family is saying is correct, there should be an in-depth investigation. Are those who chant Jai Shri Ram not safe? Will they be killed in Delhi?”
Earlier, speaking to news channels, he had said, “The situation is such that we can’t say Jai Shri Ram in our country. Will it be said in Pakistan, if not in India?” The video was shared by AAP on their official Twitter handle.
Meanwhile, members of the VHP and BJP held a prayer meeting and protest in Mangolpuri in the afternoon. Around 2 pm, their leaders met Sharma’s brother Mannu, a VHP youth wing member, and his mother Radha Devi and demanded that the accused be hanged.
Addressing the crowd, BJP Delhi president Adesh Gupta said, “Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal calls himself ‘Dilli ka beta’ but he hasn’t met the family yet. He can go meet Akhlaq’s family but can’t come here.” Akhlaq was beaten to death by a mob in 2015 in Dadri over rumours that his family was in possession of beef.
“People who conspired to kill Sharma will be caught and arrested soon. We want them to be hanged. We don’t want to support any Jihadi movement here,” Gupta said.
Protesters blocked the main road at Mangolpuri till 4 pm. VHP national spokesperson Vinod Bansal, general secretary Ganga mahasabha Swami Jitendranand Saraswati and international working president VHP Alok Kumar were at the meeting. The crowd later shouted slogans such as ‘Desh ke gaddaro ko goli maaro saalo ko’ and ‘Rinku ke hatyaaro ko, goli maaro saalo ko’.
Sharma’s mother said, “I don’t wish to live without my son. He was earning for all of us. I saw him being murdered by those goons. I want all of them to be hanged.”
CCTV footage from the night of the murder showed 12 men entering the lane near Sharma’s residence with sticks and weapons. Police have so far arrested five people — Zahid (26), Mehtaab (20), Danish (36), Islam (45) and Tazuddin (30).
VHP’s Alok Kumar said, “We should avenge his murder. He was killed for chanting Jai Shri Ram. We want all accused to be hanged. I am warning the police… I want all 12 men to be arrested in the next three days. Police must take strict action against the culprits.”
The leaders also demanded jobs for Sharma’s sibling and compensation for his family.
Chadha, meanwhile, hit out at the BJP: “Neither Hindus nor Muslims or Sikhs are safe under BJP’s rule. People of Delhi have voted for the BJP at the Centre in a huge majority for the last two consecutive terms but the party has failed miserably in protecting people. BJP calls itself a party of Hindus but they are not safe under their rule.”
Chadha also asked why the Home Minister or the Delhi Police Commissioner had not visited Sharma’s family and why no compensation was given to them.
Delhi Police have continued to maintain Sharma’s death was linked to a failed business venture. Delhi Police PRO Chinmoy Biswal said, “A fight broke out at a birthday party over shutting down of a restaurant… Further investigation is underway and we are looking at all angles.”
A senior police officer said, “In our preliminary investigation, we found that a fight broke between Sharma and the accused at a hotel on Wednesday night. The fight was over an old business rivalry. The accused and Sharma’s friends, who were at the birthday party, confirmed this. After the fight, the accused went to Sharma’s house and fought with him again. During this altercation, Sharma was stabbed in the back.”
The case has been transferred to the Delhi Police Crime Branch.
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