In another case of forced moral policing in Mangalore, one college student was thrashed by a group of men after a photo with his classmates went viral on social media, reports said on Tuesday. According to this report in The Indian Express, the youth studies in a college near Mangalore and the photo showed him lying on the lap of his four girl classmates. The incident occured on Sunday after the photo went viral on Whatsapp.
Mohammed Riyaz, a final year student of computer science was abducted and beaten up on Sunday. However, there were conflicting reports on the identity of the boy.
While The Hindu in this report said that the boy in the photo was "Riaz", the IE report said the goons beat up the boy mistakenly. There were two boys in the photo which went viral.
Assistant Commissioner of Police for the North Sub Division Ravi Kumar was quoted by The Indian Express as saying, "After the photograph was circulated on social media sites, a vigilante group got other students from the college to identify the deviant youth and on learning that he was probably a Muslim, decided to attack him."
According to The Hindu report (who contacted Mohammed Riyaz), the boy was with his friends at the time of the incident. Around 11 am on Sunday, a group of men forced Riyaz and his friends into a car and took them away. Riyaz's father, Abdur Rehman, contacted the Surathkal police and registered a complaint with them who filed a case of kidnapping and an attempt to murder.
"It was like a drama," Riyaz was quoted by The Hindu as saying. "When I asked for water, they forcibly made me drink beer." Riyaz pleaded with his attackers and told them that he was not the only one sitting with the girls, but the goons hardly paid any attention, the reports added. Riyaz added that the men started beating him up after asking about his religion.
The attackers allegedly blindfolded him and left him near a petrol station on National Highway (Mangaluru–Udupi) 66.
As if this was not enough, Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarti Parishad (ABVP) members have also submitted a memorandum to the college's principal asking him to debar the students after the photo was uploaded on Facebook on Saturday and went viral online, a college source has told PTI.
"The incident, the photo and its circulation on social media has created emotional outbursts among the student community and the public," the college, which is situated at Suratkal here, said in a letter to Mangalore University.
According to a report in the PTI, the college authorities informed the parents of the students of the matter and a committee was formed to look into it. Now, after a preliminary inquiry, a decision was taken to suspend the students, the sources said.
PTI report also added that a probe is on to find the person who had posted the photo on Facebook, while the police is yet to identify and arrest the attackers. The IE report said that the police might question the two friends of Riyaz who were with him at the time of abduction.
With inputs from PTI
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Updated Date: Feb 24, 2015 16:44:47 IST