Bulandshahr (UP): A police inspector, who had probed the Akhlaq lynching case initially, and a youth died of gunshot injuries on Monday as a rampaging mob protesting alleged illegal cow slaughter torched a police post here and clashed with cops, officials said.
Four persons were arrested Tuesday after police lodged an FIR against over two dozen people for rioting and murder in connection with the violence here, officials said.
As many as 27 people have been named in the FIR, registered around 3 AM, while cases have been lodged against 50 to 60 unidentified people, they said.
A police inspector, who had probed the Akhlaq lynching case initially, and a 20-year-old local man died of gunshot injuries on Monday as a rampaging mob protesting alleged illegal cow slaughter torched a police post here and clashed with cops, according to police.
Additional Director General (Meerut zone) Prashant Kumar had said the protestors from Mahaw village and nearby areas pelted stones on police and indulged in arson, set ablaze several vehicles and Chingarwathi Police Chowki, after somebody parts of cows were found in a jungle near the village, prompting the police to open fire.
Inspector Subodh Kumar Singh, who was posted at Siana Police Station, suffered a gunshot injury in addition to wounds from hard and blunt objects, Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Anand Kumar said, citing the post-mortem report.
Inspector Singh was investigating officer in the Akhlaq lynching case of Dadri between 28 September 2015, and 9 November 2015, he said, replying to queries from reporters.
The mob lynching of Akhlaq over rumours of cow slaughter and possession of beef in his home had triggered a massive outrage across the country.
Police said Sumit (20) also died of gunshot injuries sustained during the violence.
As tension prevailed in the area following the violence that lasted nearly three hours, the Uttar Pradesh government deployed additional police, including over 1,000 personnel of anti-riot forces, and ordered multiple probes by SIT, ADG-Intelligence and a magisterial inquiry.
Expressing grief over the incident, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, who is in Rajasthan for the election campaign, said strict action will be taken against the guilty after the probe reports are received.
In Lucknow, the Uttar Pradesh government announced a total of Rs 50-lakh assistance to the kin of Inspector Singh. The government said Rs 40 lakh would be given to his wife and Rs 10 lakh to his parents.
Giving details of the incident, the ADG (Law and Order) said the trouble started this morning when carcasses of the cows were found dumped in a forest area outside Mahaw village.
“Activists of right-wing organisations soon gathered at the spot and alleged that people of a community were indulging in cow slaughter,” he said.
Angry villagers and members of various Hindu groups brought the animal remains in a tractor-trolley to the Chingarwathi Police Chowki and demanded action against the culprits.
They raised slogans against the police administration and blocked the Bulandshahr-Garh State Highway.
A video showing the body of a policeman slumped to ground from the seat of a police vehicle surrounded by some people came to light after the Sunday incident. But the police refused to confirm if it was of inspector Subodh.
However, a senior police official requesting anonymity said, “In all likelihood, it appears to be Subodh Kumar’s.”
The ADG (law and order) said additional reinforcements — 500 personnel of Rapid Action Force and 600 personnel of Provincial Armed Constabulary — were rushed to the spot of violence and the situation was under control.
DM Jha said, “Some people took the bodies of the animals and tried to block the road. The policemen were attacked when they tried to get the road opened.”
The violence started at around 10 AM in the Siana area in the district where a major three-day Islamic congregation had concluded this afternoon. The police warned against attempts to spread any misleading information, saying the incident was not related in any way to the congregation.
“The incident occurred 40-50 km away from the congregation site. Some miscreants were behind the violence and action is being taken against them in accordance with law,” the Bulandshahr Police tweeted in the evening.