Vol. XLIII No. 27 July 07, 2019

Charge sheet against Pehlu Khan’s kin

THE All India Kisan Sabha has strongly condemned the Congress-led Rajasthan government’s indictive step of framing charge sheet against sons of Pehlu Khan, a dairy farmer who was lynched near Alwar in April 2017 by so-called ‘gau rakshaks’ (cow vigilantes).

The dairy farmer was killed by a lynch mob under the patronage of the RSS-BJP. The then Vasundhara Raje-led BJP government allowed the real culprits, named in the dying statement of Khan, go scot-free by manipulating the case. The BJP-led state government also did not give any compensation to the victim’s family exposing its inhuman traits. It was the All India Kisan Sabha and other progressive-minded organisations and individuals who collected Rs 10 lakh and gave it to Pehlu Khan’s family as compensation.

It was a clear case of a dairy farmer purchasing cows and calves from Jaipur cattle fair and they were in possession of records from municipal authorities. The police and civil administration under the BJP rule had taken vindictive measures against the family since they were Muslims. Khan belonged to the Muslim community in Mewat Region which traditionally depends on cattle rearing for their livelihood.

It was expected that the new state government in Rajasthan led by the Congress will reinvestigate the case and ensure justice by arresting the real culprits and ensuring strong deterrent punishment as per law. Instead, the Ashok Gehlot government is trying to further victimize the kin of Pehlu Khan. This is unacceptable and contrary to the finest secular and democratic traditions of India. 

After Narendra Modi got re-elected as prime minister, inhuman acts of lynching and mob crimes against Muslims have been reported from different parts of the country. A Muslim youth was killed in Jharkhand. Instead of fighting these anti-national crimes by fanatic communal elements backed by the RSS-BJP, the Congress is also trying to appease communal forces by making unlawful maneuvering as in Pehlu Khan's case, which will surely boomerang on it.

The AIKS demands Congress president Rahul Gandhi explain its position on hate politics against Muslims in the name of cow protection. The Ashok Gehlot government should reinvestigate the Pehlu Khan murder case, book the real culprits and provide Rs 1 crore as compensation to his kin as a message against such hate crimes. The AIKS will submit memorandum to the chief minister of Rajasthan for this cause.

If the state government of Rajasthan does not withdraw the manipulated charge sheet and provide justice to the victims, the AIKS along with other peasant organisations will launch intensive struggles.