Lynching of Pehlu Khan: National Call for 3-Day Dharna in Jaipur to Demand Justice

In a unique instance of a united initiative, a number of organizations in Rajasthan have come together to protest the lynching of Pehlu Khan and to demand justice in the matter. A large demonstration was recently held in Jaipur, following which many organizations of different political persuasions have come together to call for a three-day national dharna outside the Rajasthan State Assembly from 24-26 April 2017.

Pehlu Khan

The organisations which have issued the appeal published below include: Rajasthan Nagrik Manch, PUCL, CPI (M), CPI, NFIW, AIDWA, WRG, Vividha, National Muslim Women’s Welfare Society, BGVS, MKSS, Suchna Evam Rozgar Adhikar Manch, JIH, Dr. Ambedkar Vichar Manch, CDR, AIDMAM, Welfare Party of India, Jan Vichar Manch, Samajwadi Party, JD (U), SIO, SFI, Rajasthan Smagra Sewa Sangh, HRLN, Samta Gyan Vigyan Manch, All India Kisan Sabha, NAPM, WRG, Vividha, SDPI, RUWA, Zari Workers Union and others.





As you are aware that 55 year old Pehlu Khan a dairy farmer from Nuh, Mewat district in Haryana was lynched by a group of so called Gaurakshaks on NH 8 at Behror, Rajasthan, when he was returning with four others, including his 2 sons, in 2 pick up trucks, after buying a few cows (along with the documents) from the fair in Hatwara, near Jaipur city.

At about 6.30pm on the 1st of April, their vehicles were stopped and they were pulled out of their vehicles and beaten up brutally by a mob and later Pehlu Khan succumbed to his injuries on the 3rd of April at Kailash hospital in Behror. Azmat who was critically injured was harassed by the police in the name of investigations, that he too was not given proper treatment and even today he remains seriously sick and in a state of trauma.

Pehlu khan a dairy farmer was charged by the police of trafficking cows that day and the police booked all 5 of them under section 5 and 8 of the Rajasthan Bovine law. They were allowed to go home after the death of Pehlu Khan. Pehlu Khan’s FIR was also lodged against the attackers, despite the fact that the crime was so serious they were booked under simple bailable sections, except for sec 308 of the IPC, abetment to homicide, not attempt to murder. However, after the death of Pehlu Khan it was converted to sec 302 of the IPC.

To date only five people have been arrested. But not the six who were named in the FIRs. They are being completely protected by the police. We are told that the main accused are not being arrested as they are a part of the Bajrang Dal, VHP and RSS and are professionals and work as either college teachers, nurses and two are also student leaders. It is imperative that they be arrested.

We were also informed that in order to put pressure on the family of Pehlu Khan, the Haryana police has made Irshad the son of Pehlu Khan an accused in a 2011 case of trafficking of cows, police station Tauru in Mewat.

The Rajasthan Chief Minister has not cared to open her mouth on this serious crime in the State. Eighteen days have passed. Initially it was the election campaign period of the Dholpur bypoll and that speaking on this issue maybe politically incorrect for her, we were told. But now that the by polls have been won despite the lynching and death of Pehlu Khan, it does not matter anymore as such issues in no way affects their image with their supporters instead helps them polarise and consolidate the “Hindu” vote even more.

The State Home Minister who spoke to the media soon after the death of Pehlu Khan, instead of assuring the public that fair investigation would happen and the Gau Rakshaks would be behind bars, glorified the Gau Rakshaks and said that they have done a good job except that they should not have been so brutal with Pehlu Khan and not taken the law in their hands.

Groups in Alwar and Jaipur have been protesting from day one. Meetings have happened with the police SP in Alwar, the DG police and the Chief Secretary. On the 10th and the 17th  public protests were also organised and memorandum presented to the CMO, as the CM was not there on both days.

Some members of the family of Pehlu Khan came to Jaipur on the 17th of April with the hope of meeting the CM and sharing their side of the story, which they felt the police had
not given them a fair chance, but were disappointed.

The lynching of Pehlu Khan is not the first case in Rajasthan. In Bharloki, Khimsar Tehsil, Nagaur, Abdul Gaffar Qureshi was lynched on the 30th of May, 2015 which led to his death, following rumours of Muslims having consumed beef after slaughtering cows, when it was completely wrong as the evidence showed.

Similarly, in Rajsamand in October 2016, the Banjaras were beaten up badly by Gaurakshaks for buying cows in Rajasamand, despite having all the required documents, then it took several public protests to get them arrested. Similarly, Hotel Hayat Rabbani was shut down on 19th March, following a conspiracy between the police, the Nagar Nigam at the Mayoral level and the gau rakshaks, led by a Kamal didi, where they spread a rumour that the hotel staff served beef. The hotel remains shut even today.

In this context several groups in Rajasthan have decided that till national pressure is not brought on the Vasundhara Raje Government, Pehlu Khan will not get justice.

That is why the three day Dharna has been planned outside the Vidhan Sabha from the 24th to 26th of April.

It is important that the 200 legislators discuss this issue and the government give a reply to our demands.

Apart from the arrest of the attackers the demands consisted of the following”
·          End all vigilantism in the name of a cow now.
·          SHO Behor Police Station, be suspended with immediate effect and the SP of Alwar be removed. There was a failure of due diligence.
·         Home Minister Gulab Chand Kataria , should resign on moral and ethical grounds for openly glorifying and lauding the criminals.
·         Azmat Khan be shifted to a good hospital in the vicinity in Gurgaon.
·         Rs. One Crore be compensated to nearest kin of Pehlu Khan
·         All the injured be provided with Rs. 25 lakh for rehabilitation and recovery.
·         All FIRs against Pehlu Khan and his family members and fellow travellers be closed.
·      A single window access to all documents required when transporting cows from one state to another.
·      Hotel Hyatt Rabbani should be reopened immediately.

DATES OF DHARNA: 24th to 26th of April, 2017

Venue outside the State Assembly of Rajasthan

Timings 11 am onwards

Contact persons: Basant Haryana: 9887767688, Sumitra Chopra: 9462171994, Sawai Singh: 9413200044, Iqbal Siddiqui: 7737509669, Mukesh Goswami: 9468862200, Sanjay Madhav: 9414073669, Nisha Sidhu: 9414443607, Kavita Srivastava: 9351562965



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