With Rajasthan Police giving a clean chit to all the six accused named by Pehlu Khan in his dying declaration, the family of the dairy farmer from Haryana's Muslim-dominated Nuh district who was brutally beaten by cow vigilantes in April this year said they will fight to get justice for him.
Khan's son, Irshad, told the media in his village Jaisinghpur, 15 kilometres from Nuh town, that they will ensure that those behind his murder get punished. He said they will move the Supreme Court to seek justice for Khan.
His comments follow reports that the Crime Investigation Department-Crime Branch (CID-CB) of Rajasthan Police has given a clean chit to the six accused, who were named in the case by Khan and others in neighbouring Rajasthan's Alwar district in April.
"These six accused were the main people who stopped our vehicle and started beating us up. They were joined by 15-20 others. We tried to show them papers that we were dairy farmers who were bringing the cows for dairy farming from a government fair (mela) but they tore up the papers and attacked us," Irshad Khan said.
"Six persons have been given a clean chit in the investigation into the Pehlu Khan case. Nine others, however, will face criminal charges," ADG (CID-CB), Pankaj Kumar Singh said.
The clean chit was given on the basis of statements of those present at the scene of the crime, photographs, and mobile phone location records, he said.
Those absolved were Hukum Chand, Om Prakash, Sudhir Yadav, Rahul Saini, Navin Sharma and Jagmal Yadav, Singh told PTI.
Khan had named the six as being part of the mob that had attacked him, he said.
The 'Pehlu Khan lynching case', which triggered a massive furore, was handed over to the crime investigation department-crime branch (CID-CB) in July. The CB-CID had on 1 September, handed over its report to the Alwar police, officials said.
Pehlu Khan, 55, died from the assault by the cow vigilantes. Others, including his sons, received serious injuries in the unprovoked attack.
Having seen his father being mercilessly beaten with sticks, rods, and belts by the vigilantes, Irshad says he is even now unable to comprehend why all this happened to them.
"They targetted us for being Muslims. Our father was beaten to death in front of our eyes. We had done nothing wrong. The cows were being brought for dairy farming," Irshad had said earlier.
Pehlu Khan is survived by his wife, who has suffered a paralytic attack, and eight children, the youngest ones aged seven and five.
Both Rajasthan, where the attack took place, and Haryana have Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) governments and Hindu activist groups are active in these states.
The Nuh district in southwest Haryana is Muslim dominated. Of the nearly 11 lakh population of the district in the 2011 Census, nearly 80 per cent is that of Muslims. The district headquarters town of Nuh is located around 70 kilometres from New Delhi.
Updated Date: Sep 14, 2017 19:24 PM