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Nihang Sikhs on Police Radar After Body with Hands Cut Off Found at Singhu Protest Site; FIR Filed Against Unknown Persons

File photo of farmers protesting at Delhi's Singhu border. (PTI)

File photo of farmers protesting at Delhi's Singhu border. (PTI)

The deceased has been identified as 35-year-old Lakhbir Singh, a resident of Cheema Kalan village in Punjab's Tarn Taran district.

The man found hanging with hands and legs chopped off near the farmers’ protest site on Haryana-Delhi Singhu border was allegedly killed by a group of Nihang Sikhs “on suspicion of disrespecting the Sikh holy book", police said on Friday after a preliminary probe.

The videos and photos from the site showed the man tied to an overturned police barricade, his wrist was chopped off and his ankle and leg broken. Nihang Sikhs, a warrior group, are a part of the protesters. The deceased has been identified as 35-year-old Lakhbir Singh, a resident of Cheema Kalan village in Punjab’s Tarn Taran district. He was a labourer belonging to the Dalit community.

The Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM), the umbrella body of farmer unions spearheading the ongoing protests against the Centre’s agricultural laws, condemned the killing and clarified that they have “no relation" to either the Nihang group and the deceased person. “The Morcha is against sacrilege of any religious text or symbol, but that does not give anyone the right to take the law into their own hands. We demand that the culprits be punished according to law after investigating the allegation of murder and conspiracy behind sacrilege," a statement by the body read.

“At about 5 am today, a body was found hanging with hands, legs chopped at the spot where farmers’ protest is underway (Kundli, Sonipat). No info on who’s responsible, FIR lodged against an unknown person. Viral video is a matter of probe, rumours will linger," said DSP Hansraj.

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Sandeep, IG, Rohtak, told News18 that the forensic team has examined the crime scene and was collecting intelligence. “We have information on some suspect, and we will make headway very soon. We have started with the postmortem," he said.

According to images that have surfaced on social media, the body was seen hanging from a barricade. “The body has been sent to a nearby Civil hospital and further investigation is going on," according to a report by IANS.

Last week, the Supreme Court said the three new farm laws have already been stayed and asked a farmers’ body what is it protesting against when these legislations are not in place.

A bench of Justices A M Khanwilkar and C T Ravikumar said where is the question of going on protest once a party has already approached the court challenging the validity of the laws.

Kisan Mahapanchayat’, the farmers and agriculturists body, and its president have also sought directions to the concerned authorities to provide space to at least 200 farmers or protestors of the body at the Jantar Mantar for organising peaceful and non-violent Satyagrah’.

The bench, which posted the matter for hearing on October 21, transferred to itself the plea, which was filed by the farmers’ body before the Rajasthan High Court challenging the validity of the three farm laws. Several farmer organisations are protesting against the passage of three laws — The Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020, The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020 and Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020.

Initially, the protests started from Punjab in November last year and later spread mainly to Delhi, Haryana, and Uttar Pradesh.

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first published:October 15, 2021, 11:40 IST