NEW DELHI: Union Minister and senior BJP leader Arjun Ram Meghwal sparked a controversy on Saturday, saying the Alwar lynching incident was related to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rising popularity and the more popular he becomes the more such incidents would happen in the country.
“The more popular Modi ji becomes, the more such incidents will happen. In Bihar election it was ‘Award Wapsi’, in Uttar Pradesh elections it was mob lynching. In 2019 elections it will be something else. Prime Minister Modi gave several schemes, their effects can be seen, this (lynching) incident is just one reaction to it,” Meghwal said.
Meghwal was reacting to the incident of a group of people allegedly killing a man in Rajasthan’s Alwar over suspicion of cow smuggling on the intervening night of Friday and Saturday.
“We condemn mob lynching but this isn’t a single incident. You have to trace this back in history. Why does this happen? Who should stop this? What happened with Sikhs in 1984 was the biggest mob lynching of this nation’s history,” the minister said in reaction to the lynching incident.
Meanwhile, Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje condemned the latest incident of cow vigilantism, and assured stern action against the perpetrators.
28-year-old Akbar Khan was taking some cows to his village through a forest near Lalawandi area in the Alwar distrcit of Rajasthan when some locals allegedly thrashed him brutally, suspecting him to be a cow smuggler.
The police immediately rushed the victim to a nearby hospital, where he was declared brought dead. Police have, so far, arrested two suspects and launched a manhunt for other suspects.
The killing comes four days after the central and state governments came under a sharp criticism from the Supreme Court over frequent lynching incidents. The Supreme Court also asked Parliament to come up with a law to tackle cow vigilantism and lynch, calling such incidents “horrendous acts of mobocracy” that should be nipped in the bud.
It is the third such incident in Alwar since April last year when 50-year-old dairy farmer Pehlu Khan was beaten to death by cow vigilantes in the same district.
Another man, Umar Mohammed, 35, also a dairy farmer was found dead near the railway tracks in Alwar in November 2017. He was also allegedly killed by vigilantes when he was transporting cows to his home in Pahari tehsil of the district
Just on Friday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged state governments to take stringent action against the culprits of mob lynching.
The cases of mob fury have been on a rise in India. According to the Ministry of Home Affairs, 45 persons were killed by mob in 40 cases across nine states between 2014 and March 03 this year.