Rajasthan govt moves HC against Pehlu Khan case verdict

Rajasthan govt moves HC against Pehlu Khan case verdict

Irshad Khan, 24, holds a picture of his late father Pehlu, 55, in Jaisinghpur. (Reuters photo)

The Rajasthan government on Thursday filed an appeal against an Alwar court’s decision in August to acquit all six accused in the lynching case of 55-year-old dairy farmer Pehlu Khan.

On August 14, the six accused were set free by the Alwar court. During the investigation, three accused, who were minors at the time of the crime, were being tried separately at a juvenile court. All six accused were caught on a cellphone camera, but a trial court in Alwar said the video evidence was not admissible. However, the police had earlier held the accused on the basis of a video which showed Khan being pulled by the neck, thrown to the ground and kicked by a group of men. 

On the basis of video and other evidence, the police had arrested six men — Vipin Yadav, Ravindra Kumar, Kaluram, Dayaram, Yogesh Kumar alias Dholia, and Bhim Rathi — charging them under sections 147, 323, 341, 302, 308, 379 and 427 of the IPC, Public prosecutor Yogendra Khatana said. 

Also read — No one lynched Pehlu Khan

The 55-year-old Pehlu Khan, a native of Nuh in Haryana, was allegedly beaten up by self-styled cow vigilantes near Behror in Rajasthan on April 1, 2017. He along with his two sons Azmat and Rafiq were on their way to Haryana after purchasing cattle in Jaipur. 

“The appeal against the Pehlu Khan verdict was filed at the Rajasthan High Court on Monday,” Additional Advocate General Major R P Singh told The Indian Express.

The Rajasthan government's move comes a month after a special investigation team (SIT) constituted in its report highlighting gaps in different levels of investigation in the case. The gaps including the video of the lynching not being presented as evidence in a professional manner, taking instruments on the record and following proper legal procedure.