Vol. XLI No. 48 November 26, 2017

Murder of Dairy Farmer, Ummar Mohammed Khan: AIKS Delegation Visits Alwar

AN AIKS delegation led by president Dr Ashok Dhawale visited Ghatmika village in Bharatpur district of Rajasthan ON November 17 to meet the family members of Ummar Mohammed Khan, a poor dairy farmer and daily wage labourer who was murdered by gau rakshaks in Alwar in Rajasthan on November 10. The delegation also met the Alwar SP Rahul Prakash and deputy SP Anil Beniwal and discussed the seriousness of the crime and need for stringent action against the culprits.

According to the SP, the postmortem report has confirmed two bullet injuries as cause of death of Ummar Khan and the cow. He also said two culprits have been arrested so far and search for five more suspected is going on. Steps to provide compensation to victim are being considered. 

The delegation found the family as poor and under severe distress. They are living by selling milk and occasional daily wage from rural work. The entire village is backward and poverty ridden. The village has 450 houses in which around 400 are Muslim families. The village has around 1000 cows apart from buffalos and the main income is from dairying. The price of one litre milk is Rs 20 only which is very low and the villagers are facing distress in general. There is no development in the region. Cow rearing is the major livelihood support to the village.      

The family members and the villagers said that there is no case registered against Ummar Khan, thus challenging the claim so by the Alwar police in a written press statement. The SP claims it was a case of cow smuggling since there is no tax receipt from the cattle market. Purchasing and selling cows is not legally banned in Rajasthan by any Act. When the villagers sell and purchase cows from households there is no system of receipts. Without any complaint about cow theft from anybody, the fact that the Alwar police have registered a case of cow smuggling against the victim underlines the prejudiced mindset of the police and administration.

The family members have pointed out that the doctor on duty at Alwar Hospital had stated that the death was not due to firing since there was no bullet found in the X-ray. Then the family members and the villagers objected to conducting post mortem at Alwar and thus the police was forced to refer the body to Jaipur for post mortem. In Jaipur the post mortem confirmed death due to two bullet injuries. The murder happened at Gahankar village in Bharatpur district. The vehicle was found at Govindgarh and the body was found 15 km away on the railway tracks in Ramgarh. There was conscious effort by the criminals to misguide the public that it was an accidental death, and the behaviour of the Alwar doctor is unconvincing.

AIKS has been consistently fighting the communal forces and the killer gau rakshaks who are continuously committing crimes including mob lynching. So far more than 30 people died in such attacks after the Prime Minister Narendra Modi assumed power in 2014. In the Pehlu Khan case also, the real culprits were left scot-free by the police and the Rajasthan government and not a single paisa was given to the victim’s family as compensation. 

The Supreme Court had to intervene and direct the central government and state governments to deploy nodal police officers at district level to control the illegal activities of so called gau rakshaks and ensure adequate compensation to victims of such mob violence. However, the BJP-led state and central governments, rather than heed the constitutional authorities, seem to work on orders from the RSS headquarters in Nagpur.

These chains of crimes divide the people on communal lines and if allowed to continue will divide the people and destroy the unity of the country in the long run. Hence all the secular and democratic forces must come forward to isolate the killer gau rakshaks and the RSS-BJP that are patronising these elements.

The AIKS demands from the central government and the state government the following-

1.    Immediately arrest all the culprits responsible for the murder of Ummar Khan.

2.    Rs One crore as compensation to the victim’s family and Rs 25 lakh to those injured.

3.    Institute a judicial enquiry into the Ummar Khan murder case.

4.    The government must ensure cattle trade and those governments that ban slaughter must amend cow protection act to purchase unproductive animals paying market rate. 

5.    Ban unlawful organisations like gau rakshaks.

The AIKS delegation included president Dr Ashok Dhawale, joint secretary Vijoo Krishnan, finance secretary P Krishnaprasad, Rajasthan state secretary Chhagan Choudhury, vice president Gurcharan Singh Morh, Bharatpur district secretary Nathilal Sharma, president Rambo Hawaldar and Imam Assamohammed of Bharatpur.