Pehlu Khan was killed on a busy highway in Rajasthan by a mob of self-proclaimed cow protectors. Now in an exclusive investigation, senior investigative journalist Ajit Sahi has discovered that this was in fact murder. He has also found that the police sabotaged the investigation and engaged in an elaborate cover up. This weakened the case against the Gau Rakshaks. Here is a summary of the report titled How the Police are Protecting the Murderers of Pehlu Khan.
The story so far
On April 1, 2017, a small group of dairy farmers was driving up along the Jaipur-Delhi highway in Rajasthan with a few cows they had purchased at a cattle fair in Jaipur. The group included Pehlu Khan and his sons Irshad and Arif, who were returning to their village Nuh in Haryana. But just as they reached Behror tehsil in Alwar district, they were attacked by over 200 Gau Rakshaks or cow vigilantes. Khan kept pleading with his assailants to let them go and even produced paper work from civic authorities that stated that the cows were purchased for milk production and not for slaughter. But the attackers tore up the documents and mercilessly beat the hapless men with sticks. The Gau Rakshaks kicked and punched them causing many grievous injuries to Pehlu Khan and his companions. Khan who was a heart patient suffered cracked ribs, a bloody nose and even injuries to his eye. Two days later Pehlu died of his injuries at a private hospital.
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You can also read the full report here.
The FIR stage cover up
The cover began at the stage of filing the First Information Report (FIR) itself. Before Pehlu Khan died, he clearly named six men as his attackers. These men were Om Yadav, Hukum Chand Yadav, Sudhir Yadav, Jagmal Yadav, Naveen Sharma and Rahul Saini. This statement later became his ‘dying declaration’ and ought to have been accepted as such. But the police did not include these six names in the FIR. Subsequently, the police claimed that none of these men was even at the crime scene during the lynching. This virtual clean chit ensured that Pehlu’s attackers got bail despite their heinous crime.