At least five people were allegedly thrashed by a group of cow vigilants on the suspicion of carrying beef in Faridabad district of Haryana on Friday, news agency IANS reported. The incident happened in Mujessar area, following which the police booked members of both the groups in different cases.
Two brothers Isaan Mohammad and Shahzad along with Shakeel, Sonu, and Azaad Mohammad — all residents of three villages in Faridabad district — were thrashed when they were carrying meat in an auto-rickshaw.
However, during the initial investigation, it emerged that it was buffalo meat that the Azad, the auto-rickshaw driver, and his friends were transporting, police said according to PTI.
The police have now registered a case based on the statement of the auto-rickshaw driver and the meat has been sent to a forensic lab for further tests, officials said.
According to officials, the injured Azad said that he and four of his friends were returning from Fatehpur Billauch area to Old Faridabad on Friday with some buffalo meat. It was near village Bajri that that 15-20 youth asked them to stop. They thrashed them and then called up the police and handed Azad over to the police alleging that he was a cow-smuggler.
A police official said that based on the complaint of the group, a case was registered against the auto-driver under the laws related to cow slaughter.
“In the initial investigation, it was found that it was buffalo meat and not beef that was being transported. Therefore, a case under relevant sections was registered on the complaint of Azad. Further action will be taken after probing the matter,” PTI quoted Vinod Singh, SHO, Mujesar police station as saying.
Earlier in the day, Faridabad police had registered an FIR against the victims under the Haryana Gauvansh and Gausamvardhan Act of 2015. They also registered a case under Sections 148, 149, 323, 341, and 506 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) at Mujessar police station against unknown 15-20 persons for thrashing the five youths.
The assault comes just a month after the Supreme Court delivered a strong message on cow vigilantism. The apex court had asked all state governments to appoint a senior police officer as a nodal officer in each district to ensure that incidents of cow vigilantism are prevented and dealt with effectively.
“This must stop. The law is in place…Planned action is needed so that vigilantism does not grow in this sphere, not in any sphere for that matter,” a Bench of Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and Amitava Roy had earlier said.
Condemning the killing in the name of cow protection and warning cow vigilantes, PM Narendra Modi had said that this is unacceptable. “Killing people in the name of cow is unacceptable. No one has the right to take law into his/her hands. We belong to a land of non-violence. Violence is not the solution to any problem”, Modi had said.
(With PTI, IANS inputs)