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Two Years After Being Lynched by Gau Rakshaks, Pehlu Khan Chargesheeted for Cow Smuggling by Congress Govt

Although the incident dates back to April 2017 when the BJP was in power in the state, the chargesheet is being filed months after the Congress took over.


Updated:June 29, 2019, 11:14 PM IST
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New Delhi: Two years after Pehlu Khan was lynched to death by a mob of 'gau rakshaks' in Alwar, Rajasthan Police have filed a chargesheet against his two sons and a truck operator for illegally transporting cattle.

Prepared on December 30 last year, the chargesheet names his two sons, Irshad and Arif, as well as the owner of the pick-up truck that was used for transporting the cattle on April 1, 2017. The chargesheet, which comes months after the Congress formed a government in the state, was presented in the court of the Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate in Behror on May 29 this year.

Although the incident dates back to April 2017 when the BJP was in power in the state, the chargesheet is being filed months after the Congress took over.

"The chargesheet was accepted by the court on May 24 against three persons under the Rajasthan Bovine Animal Act. Since Pehlu Khan had died, he has not been chargesheeted," said Alwar Superintendent of Police Anil Paris Deshmukh.

However, Pehlu Khan's name was mentioned in the summary of the chargesheet. The document mentions his name in the column of accused who are not chargesheeted. It makes clear that this is because he is now dead.

The police maintained that the case against Pehlu Khan, his sons, and the truck operator stood proved in the investigation. They were charged under under the Rajasthan Bovine Animal (Prohibition of Temporary Migration or Export) Act, 1995.

Last year, the previous BJP government in Rajasthan had filed a similar chargesheet against two associates of Khan who were also attacked by the mob.

Amid uproar, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said the investigation in the case was carried out during the regime of the previous BJP government. "If any discrepancies will be found in the investigation, case will be re-investigated," he said.

Gehlot added, "The Congress like always condemns such criminal activities and does not support them. The matter is in court and justice will be given."

"Investigation into the case was done during the BJP rule. If any discrepancy is found, we will get the case re-investigated," Gehlot said. "The Congress has not changed its stand on the issue," he added, saying those who indulge in such killings on the pretext of "gau raksha" won't be spared.

In a series of tweets later in the day, the chief minister said that Pehlu Khan was not named in the chargesheet submitted by the police in December last year.

Gehlot in a tweet also said this was a case separate from the one related to the lynching, and was registered and investigated under the previous government. Since the three accused named in the chargesheet were not present at the time of its submission in December 2018, the district court accepted the "challan" on May 24, he said.

"However, our government will see if the investigation was done with predetermined intentions," he tweeted.

Khan was a 55-year-old resident of Jaisinghpur village of Nuh district in Mewat. He had left his village to purchase cattle in order to increase milk produce for Ramzan. Surrounded by a mob of cow vigilantes, Khan had tried to save himself by showing his purchase receipts, but was lynched with rods and sticks.

The issue soon snowballed into a political controversy, with Shiv Sena's Priyanka Chaturvedi questioning the silence of "selective liberals".

AIMIM's Asaduddin Owaisi also criticised the Congress government for the chargesheet and called it a "replica" of the BJP. "Congress in “Power” is replica of BJP ,Muslims of Rajasthan must realise this,reject such individuals/organisations who are brokers of congress party,& start developing their own independent political platform ,70 years is a long time please CHANGE," he tweeted.

(With inputs from PTI)

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