Almost 70 policemen came to Nayabans village on Monday after the attacks to identify the seven accused of cow slaughter. The team of cops occupied a central position in the cluster of Muslim houses and called out the names, one at a time.
Image Courtesy: Abhishek Dey / Scroll.in
Bulandshar: In a curious twist of events, two minor boys aged 11 and 12, have been named as accused in the Bulandshahr violence that rocked the western UP village of Mahaw on Monday. A case was filed by Yogesh Raj, a member of Bajrang Dal and also considered the main accused in the incident where a police officer was shot by an angry mob. Raj is absconding since the incident.
The boys, who are cousins, are among seven named in a complaint of cow slaughter filed after some 25 carcasses were allegedly found strewn around in a forest near a village in Bulandshahr.
“Yogesh Raj is seen in a video arguing with the police and demanding action against cow slaughter on Monday, shortly before the situation went out of hand and a mob attacked policemen, burnt the police outpost and set vehicles on fire. Yogesh Raj's complaint includes two children, one man who does not live in the village anymore, and three names the villagers have never heard,” reported News18. Inspector Subodh Kumar Singh was shot in the head and died when he went out to pacify the mob.
Many named in the FIR don’t live in the village
"The police came to our house, called us to the police station and kept us there for four hours. They took the names of the boys and took my phone number. I was told we should be called again if required," the father of one of the accused minors said. He said that they were not even in the village on the day of the incident.
“For the two minors, it was nothing less than a traumatic experience. "We hardly spoke there. I was not feeling well. I had never been inside a police station before. After my uncle said that we were younger than 18, he was asked to get our Aadhaar cards to confirm the age," said one of the minors in a report by News18.
Back in the village, on Monday evening, almost 70 policemen had come to the village of Nayabans to identify the seven accused of cow slaughter. The team of cops occupied a central position in the cluster of Muslim houses and called out the names, one at a time, the report said.
It turned out that Sudaif, the first name on the list was not a resident of the village. There were two men by the name of Ilyas, the second name on the list. However, both of them had left the village with their families around 15 years ago, in search of jobs and were settled in the national capital region. Sharafat, the third name in the FIR, has also been living in Haryana’s Faridabad with his family for many years, the report observed.
“Sarfuddin and Parvez, named in the FIR, were residents of the same village. However, they were in Bulandshahr since Saturday, 45 km from Nayabans. The duo was attending Ijetma where 10 lakh Muslim devotees had gathered to pray on Monday, an essential part of the Tablighi Jamaat and were yet to return. The families of both individuals provided photographs and videos of the men attending the ceremony as proof,” the report said.
The two minors were the only ones whose names matched the ones called out by the police. The entire incident was confirmed by several villagers and two policemen who were part of the team in the village.
Raj absconding, no proof on the ground
The statement given by the sole complainant in this case, Yogesh Raj, was not corroborated on the ground, the report said.
“Yogesh had stated that around 9 am on Monday, he and three of his friends had gone for a walk from their village. In a forested area near Mahaw, a neighbouring village, they spotted seven people slaughtering cows, they said. Before they could raise an alarm, those people fled. He had said they were all residents of his village. However, his sister Suman Mahur, while talking to News18, said someone from Mahaw had called him up and that is when he left the house. “He also went to the police station but left for his college exam right after that,” she said. “He returned home at around 2:30 pm and left in another half an hour. We have not seen him since.”