Bhopal: In the first incident of cow vigilantism in Madhya Pradesh after Congress returned to power in the state six months ago, two youths were thrashed and then made to beat a woman accompanying them by “gau rakshaks” on suspicion of carrying beef.
The victims who included a Muslim couple were also allegedly forced to chant “Jai Shree Ram” by the cow vigilantes, police said.
The incident took place at Mandla under Kanhiwada block in Seoni district on May 22. It however came to light when the alleged key accused uploaded the video in social media on Thursday night.
“Five people were arrested in connection with the incident and sent to jail on Saturday”, Seoni district superintendent of police (SP) Lalit Sakyawar said.
The three victims were also arrested on charges of possessing beef, police said.
According to the police, a group of cow vigilantes led by self-styled president of Shri Ram Sena based in Seoni Shubham Baghel attacked the three victims on suspicion of carrying beef.
They tied two youths in a tree and beat them mercilessly. Later, they forced the two youths to thrash the woman accompanying them.
One of the victims has been identified as Dilip Malavya, police said.
The alleged key accused, Shubham, had uploaded the video covering the incident in social media and later withdrew it when it sparked strong reactions from people.
“Police took cognisance of the video and traced down the five accused”, the investigating officer Ganesh Uike said.
Police seized 140 kg red meat from the three victims. Besides, a three-wheeler and a scooter were seized from them. The incident stirred sharp reactions from political leaders.
“Horrified to see cow vigilantes thrash an innocent Muslim with such impunity in MP. Hope @OfficeOfKNath takes swift action against these goons”, former J&K chief minister Mehebooba Mufti said in her Twitter post.
Controversy erupted when a picture in which one of the accused in the incident was seen with Pragya Singh Thakur, the newly elected BJP MP from Bhopal, on Saturday went viral in social media.
Pragya however demanded strong action against the accused....