Alwar lynching: His truck confiscated, driver struggles to make a living | india-news | Hindustan Times
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Alwar lynching: His truck confiscated, driver struggles to make a living

Arjun Kumar Yadav was driving the truck which was attacked by alleged cow vigilantes, killing dairy farmer Pehlu Khan.

india Updated: Apr 17, 2017 18:09 IST
Deep Mukherjee
Alwar lynching
Arjun Kumar Yadav was driving the truck in which Pehlu Khan, who was attacked by alleged cow vigilantes and died, was transporting his cows to Haryana.(HT photo)

Police are yet to contact the truck driver who survived a deadly attack by cow vigilantes in Alwar earlier this month despite being a key witness to the assault that left a Muslim man dead and a nation outraged.

Arjun Kumar Yadav, the 23-year-old, escaped the assault by the cow vigilantes on Delhi-Alwar highway on April 1, only because he was a Hindu. He was allowed to flee when he told his name to one of the assaulters while others --- all Muslims --- were beaten on the charge of taking cows for slaughter. One of them, Pehlu Khan died in a hospital a few days later.

Yadav, was driving the truck he bought on loan last year, and co-passengers were Azmat and Rafique, the two who were caught by vigilantes for being Muslims and assaulted. Khan was in the other truck, which was also stopped.

He was driving one of the two vehicles transporting cows bought by a group of dairy farmers from a cattle market run by the Jaipur municipal corporation.

“A group of seven-eight people stopped us near Behror and without asking anything, they started punching and kicking us,” he said.

Yadav managed to escape when the attackers set themselves upon the dairy farmers, all of them Muslims. The driver was chased by one or two of the attackers for some distance but he managed to reach a roadside dhaba and called his uncle for help after borrowing a phone. Yadav’s phone was in his truck.

“Arjun told me that the men assaulted him and the passengers and kept shouting jai gau mata ki (hail mother cow). I went to Behror and brought him home at around 4 the next morning,” Girdhari Lal said

The police has not recorded his statement so far even though he was a key witness to the case. Yadav confirmed to HT that he was not been contacted by police, who have been accused of going soft on the attackers. The police has also failed to arrest any of the six members of the Hindu groups named by Pehlu Khan in his dying statement.

Alwar superintendent of police Rahul Prakash said they were raiding various places to nab the six people named in Khan’s FIR because they are absconding since April 5 but added that they will only be detained for interrogation.

“We will arrest them only after we are sure that they were involved in the crime,” he told HT.

The police had registered a case against six named and 200 unidentified people on Khan’s statement to police on the night of April 1 when the farmer was in the intensive care unit of a Behror hospital.

Traumatised, Yadav returned to his village Loharwada in Jaipur recently after spending time in Odisha, where he had gone to friend’s place to escape further attack, to “put it all behind me”. He prefers to stay at home and is reluctant to talk about the April 1 incident.

In the past, the so-called cow protectors have attacked people, most of them Muslims or Dalits, transporting cows, accusing them of taking the animal for slaughter, which is banned in most parts of India.

Yadav is planning legal action. His lawyer, Birdu Ram Saini, said he would get copies of permits to prove that Yadav and the famers were transporting the animals legally. “I will go to the Rajasthan high court and demand compensation as it will take more than a lakh to repair the truck,” Saini said.

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Yadav is planning legal action. His lawyer, Birdu Ram Saini, said he would get copies of permits to prove that Yadav and the famers were transporting the animals legally. “I will go to the Rajasthan high court and demand compensation as it will take more than a lakh to repair the truck,” Saini said.