Day after: Scared family thinks of leaving town

Security increased after lynching over beef rumours

Scared after the lynching of one of its members over rumours of cow slaughter and cooking beef at a Greater Noida village, the terrified Muslim family has decided to leave their ancestral home and migrate to a ‘safer place.’

“Yehan ab nahin rahenge. Chale jayenge bahar kahin” (we will not live here anymore. We will go to some other place), said a member of the family of 50-year-old Mohammed Ikhlaque, who was beaten to death by a mob at Bisara village in Gautam Buddh Nagar district on Monday night.

Ikhlaque’s 20-year old son Danish was also thrashed by the mob and he was admitted to hospital with severe wounds. His condition was stated to be critical.

“Police cannot save us. They did not act even though messages were being sent on WhatsApp from 6.30 in the evening,” he added.

According to the police sources here, a mob of around 50 people had gathered before Ikhlaque’s house in the village after an alleged announcement from a local temple that his family ate beef. “The mob broke open the door and dragged my father and brother outside. They were repeatedly hit with bricks and sticks,” alleged Ikhlaque’s daughter Sajida.

Sources said that some people had also spread the rumour that Ikhlaque had few days back slaughtered a calf and had stored its meat at his house. Sajida claimed that the meat kept in her house was goat’s but the mob insisted that it was beef.

Laboratory test later revealed that it was not beef.
Six persons have been arrested in connection with the lynching, sources said. In all, 10 people had been booked for the violence. The priest of the temple had also been detained for questioning, police said.

UP government has announced a compensation of Rs 10 lakh to the next of the kin of the man killed. Security personnel in strength had been deployed at the village to prevent any possible flare up.

Security personnel had also been deployed in strength in the nearby districts of Muzaffarnagar, Meerut, Bijnore and some others, which are considered to be communally sensitive. Officials feared that communal flare-ups could be witnessed in the neighbouring districts.

Samajwadi Party leaders slammed attempts to politicise the incident. “Some elements want to gain political mileage out of the unfortunate incident,” said SP leader Rajendra Chaudhary here.
A local BJP leader Harish Singh virtually defended the lynching.

“It is the failure of the police. People may have got agitated after reports of beef eating. Beef eating is wrong,” Singh said.

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