In its verdict convicting two teenagers in the Pehlu Khan lynching case, the Juvenile Justice Board (JJB) in Alwar has been scathing in its criticism for some doctors of the private hospital in Behror where Khan was first admitted after he was assaulted by a mob of self-styled cow vigilantes while transporting cattle in April 2017.
The JJB on Friday sentenced and sent two teenagers convicted in the Pehlu Khan lynching case to a ‘surakshit bal grah’ (special home) for three years, the maximum punishment that the board could pronounce in such cases.
“If there were actually no injuries on the body of the deceased, then the statements of the aforementioned doctors would have been alike. But because every doctor has given different statements, it appears that the doctors of Kailash Hospital treated the body of deceased Pehlu Khan as a dummy, wherein injuries were arbitrarily decided and inflicted injuries were arbitrarily treated as minimal. Such statements by the aforementioned doctors, also cast suspicion on their medical conduct,” reads the verdict authored by Principal Magistrate Sarita Dhakad.
“Therefore, doctors of Kailash Hospital Dr Akhil Saxena, Dr BD Sharma, Dr RC Yadav and Dr Jitendra Butolia should be issued a notice and their answers be sought that for the fulfilment of what objective they changed the reason for death from serious hurt to heart attack,” says the judgment.
Among the four doctors, Yadav had unsuccessfully contested the 2018 Assembly elections from Behror Assembly constituency on a Congress ticket. The Rajasthan Pradesh Congress Committee website lists him as one of the party’s leaders in Behror. Repeated attempts to reach Yadav through phone calls and text messages went unanswered.
The JJB has also said in its judgment that it is clear from the statements of doctors who conducted the post-mortem that a heart attack was not the cause of death Khan’s death and that he died owing to the injuries which he sustained during the assault.
“The aforementioned doctors have said unanimously that the reason for Pehlu Khan’s death is heart attack in which the argument forwarded by them is very irresponsible. The doctor says — ‘according to my tests and my experience, Pehlu Khan had died of a heart attack’. However, no particular tests were conducted and hurriedly they issued the death certificate. They should be asked where in medical science, without any tests reports are prepared only on the basis of experience,” says the verdict.
The judgment says that the statements of the doctors who conducted the post-mortem ‘totally contradict’ the statements and reports submitted by the doctors of Kailash Hospital.
“With this, the reports related to Pehlu Khan submitted by the aforementioned doctors and their statements become totally suspicious,” it notes.
The verdict noted that in the 21st century, when India is the largest democratic and secular country in the world, some anti-social elements don’t hesitate to confuse youth and in the name of religion induct them into an illegal group and enact such inhuman acts and killings by taking the law and order in their hands.
“In the above case, even if it is assumed that Pehlu Khan and his sons were illegally transporting cows from the Jaipur market to Haryana, then too, no person by sidelining police and the administration gets the right of taking the law in their hands so that they can make an illegal group and, in a cruel and animalistic way, assault him and then try to validate their act by saying that they are saving cows,” says the verdict.
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