Swami Agnivesh assault case: Jharkhand probe team visits Pakur; owner and staff of hotel where social worker stayed, interrogated

Pakur/Ranchi: Senior civil and police officials, part of a Jharkhand government inquiry team, on Thursday visited Pakur to investigate into the assault on social worker Swami Agnivesh allegedly by activists of BJP-affiliated youth wings, officials said.

Commissioner of Santhal Paragana Pradeep Kumar and DIG Raj Kumar Lakra, accompanied by Pakur Deputy Commissioner Dilip Kumar Jha, Superintendent of Police Shailendra Prasad Burnwal, Sub-Divisional Officer (Pakur) Jitendra Kumar Dev and Sub-Divisional Police Officer Ashok Kumar Singh inspected the hotel room where Agnivesh had put up and also spoke to shopkeepers in the vicinity of the hotel about the incident.

The officials were part of an inquiry team set up by Chief Minister Raghubar Das after the assault on Agnivesh on Tuesday.

File image of Swami Agnivesh. AFP

File image of Swami Agnivesh. AFP

They also checked the hotel register and interrogated its owner Mahbul Sheikh and other staff members.

In Ranchi, a member of Adim Jati Vikash Pradhikar, Simon Malto, on Thursday accused Swami Agnivesh of coming to the state with wrong intentions.

The Tuesday programme in which Agnivesh had come to participate was organised by the Akhil Bharatiya Adim Janjati Pahariya Vikas Samiti, a body of tribals.

"Agnivesh is pitting one person against the other. He came to Jharkhand with a wrong intention. His intention was to create a wedge in the Paharia (tribal) community, but the people thwarted such intentions," Malto said in a press statement issued by his organisation.

Malto distributed the statement to mediapersons during a press conference held by BJP chief whip in the state Assembly Radhakrishna Kishore and the party's state unit general secretary Deepak Prakash.

He alleged that political parties supporting Agnivesh have proved that they were not well wishers of Jharkhand.

In Pakur, the officials discussed about the injuries with the doctor who had attended Agnivesh.

They also spoke to Shivcharan Mallto, president of the Akhil Bharatiya Adim Janjati Pahariya Vikas Samiti.

An FIR was registered under various section of the IPC and the ST/SC (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 against over 100 Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) members after the assault on Agnivesh.

Agnivesh, a 79-year-old social activist known for his work against bonded labour, was slapped, kicked around and verbally abused in Jharkhand's Pakur town by a mob, which he said belonged to BJP-affiliated youth groups who accused him of speaking against Hindus.


Updated Date: Jul 20, 2018 09:19 AM

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