(From Press Trust of India)
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav Sunday promised justice to the family of the man lynched in Dadri over beef-eating rumour and announced an assistance of Rs 450,0000 (US$68,998) as the victim’s relatives met him in Lucknow.
Yadav also asserted that his Samajwadi Party will “never do politics” over such matters even as his government came under intense attack from political opponents following the incident.
After a two-hour meeting with family members of Mohmmad Akhlaq, who was lynched and his son seriously injured, Yadav announced raising of the financial assistance to Rs 300,0000 from Rs 20,0000 besides Rs 500,000 each to his three brothers.
“The government is with the family in this time of grief. No one can imagine what they have gone through. I have assured the family that justice will be done and legal action will be taken against the accused,” the Chief Minister told reporters in Lucknow after meeting with Akhlaq’s mother Asgari Begum, brother Mohammed Afzal and daughter Shaista.
Akhlaq’s family members expressed satisfaction over the assurance given by Yadav.
“We are satisfied and hope that the CM himself will ensure what he has said,” the victim’s mother, Asgari Begum said.
Akhlaq’s elder brother Mohammed Afzal said, “We were assured that the CM will ensure justice to us and continue to help in future.”
They had arrived in Lucknow Saturday evening accompanied by Muradnagar MLC Ashu Malik for the meeting.
The Chief Minister also announced financial assistance of Rs 500,000 to Rahul Yadav, the youth injured during a protest in Gautam Budh Nagar in the wake of the lynching incident, an official spokesman said in Lucknow.
‘Don’t add communal color’
Home Minister Rajnath Singh Sunday termed the lynching of a man in Dadri over rumour of beef eating as “unfortunate” adding it should not be given any “communal color”.
“It was an unfortunate incident. But it is not proper to give communal color to it,” he told reporters on the sidelines of a function here.
The home minister also said no one should do politics over the incident.
“The incident should not be politicized,” he said, as political leaders continued to make a beeline to Bishada village in Dadri where Iqlakh, 50, was beaten to death by a mob Monday night after a public announcement from the local temple that a calf had been slaughtered and his family had eaten beef.
His 22-year-old son Danish, who was also attacked, is in a critical condition in a hospital following two brain surgeries.
The incident has sparked outrage in the country, with parties attacking the BJP alleging that the killing was a result of its “politics of hatred”.
Union Culture Minister Mahesh Sharma, who is also the local BJP MP, had claimed that it was an “accident” and had rejected allegations that it was a “premeditated murder”.
Home guard detained
A home guard constable has been detained for questioning in connection with the mob attack in Dadri village.
Police said the constable was detained after the local temple priest stated that the the man allegedly forced him to make the announcement about a Muslim family allegedly consuming beef.
Police arrested two persons — Vishal and Shivam – Saturday for allegedly forcibly getting the announcement made in the local temple. One of them was reported to be the son of a local BJP leader.
However, BJP leader Harish Thakur denied that the father of the accused was a BJP office bearer and said he may be a BJP supporter.
The village, meanwhile, witnessed several protests Sunday as several locals agitated against the arrests of the two and also resisted the entry of media and police.
District magistrate N P Singh has written to the SSP to provide women police force at Bishada village as local women were causing law and order problems.
The district magistrate has directed that nobody should be allowed to meet the victim’s family unless family members comprising Jaan Mohhamad, Afzal and Sartaj give permission.
“If they do not want to meet any visitor, they should not be allowed to go to their house,” he said.
The magistrate also directed that surveillance should be kept on all visitors to ensure that anti-social elements do not gain entry and disturb peace.
He has also appealed to the media to exercise self-restraint in the matter so that communal harmony is not disturbed.