An elderly Muslim man, Abdul Samad, was allegedly abducted and brutally beaten up by a group of men when he was on his way to a mosque to offer prayers in Loni area in Uttar Pradesh’s Ghaziabad district on June 5.
According to reports, the men allegedly abducted Samad from an autorickshaw and dragged him to a room in a nearby forested area. Initially, there were allegations that we was forced to chant slogans such as ‘Jai Shri Ram’ and ‘Vande Mataram’. In a video shared on Twitter, the attackers were purportedly seen slapping and beating the elderly Muslim man with wooden sticks.
In the video, one of the attackers wearing a white full-sleeve T-shirt, was also seen threatening the man with a knife. He was seen pleading with his attackers but to no avail.
Two more young men - one wearing a black shirt and red trousers, while another in a light-blue T-shirt and grey trousers - were also seen brutally attacking Samad in the video.
“I was on my way when I was offered a lift. Two more men then got inside (the auto rickshaw) and told me to stay. Then they took me to a room and locked me up and thrashed me. They forced me to chant slogans… they took my mobile away… they got a knife and cut my beard," NDTV quoted Samad, who was traumatised by the incident, as saying.
After an initial probe, police officials said the attack was not communally charged and the complaint in this regard did not mention that he was forced to chant Jai Shri Ram.
Police have accused Kalu Gujjar, Adil and Praveen Gujjar (the main accused). The probe suggested that the incident was related to the sale of a tabeez (amulet) that the victim claimed had magical effects. Gujjar and others who bought the tabeez were unhappy that it didn’t work.