A day after a 50-year-old man was killed in Dadri following rumours that his family was storing and consuming beef, BJP MP Tarun Vijay said such incidents would “derail the Prime Minister’s efforts to put the country on a path of growth and inclusive development”.
Talking to The Indian Express, the Rajya Sabha MP, who used to be the editor of RSS mouthpiece Panchajanya, said, “His (the victim’s) daughter’s question whether proof that it was not cow’s meat would bring her father back to life is haunting me. One person’s folly cannot justify the other’s action. Faith is personal and one should not use it to hurt others… Such developments will derail the Prime Minister’s efforts to put the country on a path of growth and inclusive development. Such incidents do not help the agenda of governance at all.”
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“I am a believer and I worship the cow. But I know there are others in the society who look at cows from a different angle. I want to tell Hindus to clear goshalas before getting into violence against others. The cows here eat plastic and the biggest slaughtering house which sends meat to the Middle East is owned by a Hindu. (We should) Ask ourselves if we have done enough to protect cows and preserve their progeny,” he said.
Vijay said thousands of cows were being smuggled to Bangladesh from Rajasthan every month, but “we have not been able to do anything about it”. He also claimed that “secular groups” organising beef festivals was “as bad as any physical violence”.
Union Culture Minister Mahesh Sharma, meanwhile, said the incident was a result of a “misunderstanding”. He also denied suggestions that it was done to polarise the village ahead of panchayat polls.
Sharma, the Minister of State for Tourism and a BJP MP from Noida, said he was in touch with the police. “It’s a painful incident. Both so-called groups belong to the same village and have been living together for years. Nobody should take the law into his hand,” Sharma said. “This incident was like action and reaction and not because of any organised plan. Misunderstanding was the main reason for this… I do not think it was done in a planned way.”
“There were a lot of events going on… not only cow slaughtering but of animal theft and animal slaughtering… In that confusion, there was misunderstanding about the animal killing and the event was a result of that,” he said.
Condemning the incident, Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi said, “Such politics needs to be condemned. There is a growing ambiance and climate of hate… politics of poison and hatred is bound to grow in the run-up to Bihar elections. Silence from the top, despite having great oratory, is eloquent.”
Saying that it was shocking to find such incidents happening on the outskirts of Delhi, Singhvi added, “In the last 15 months, such incidents have been rising, so has the trust deficit.”
The ruling Samajwadi Party in Uttar Pradesh, too, attacked the BJP, saying it was using issues like beef ban to spread hate.
UP govt orders probe, announces Rs 10 lakh compensation
Lucknow: The Uttar Pradesh government has ordered a magisterial inquiry into the death of 50-year-old Mohammad Akhlaq, who was allegedly killed over rumours about his family consuming beef, in Bisara Village in Gautam Budh Nagar district. The state government has announced a compensation of Rs 10 lakh for the family members of the deceased. The government has also decided to bear the entire cost of treatment of those injured in the incident, including Akhlaq’s son.
Principal Secretary (Home) Debashish Panda disclosed that those arrested over the incident will face charges under the National Security Act. The Uttar Pradesh State Minorities Commission has sought a report about the incident from the senior superintendent of police and asked him to apprise it about the steps taken for maintaining peace and harmony. – ENS