A mob of “gau rakshaks” allegedly beat up two Dalits in Andhra Pradesh after they skinned a cow which had died due to electrocution, police said on Tuesday.
The incident took place at Janakipeta in Amalapuram town of East Godavari district in Andhra Pradesh. According to police a farmer engaged the two Dalits brothers for skinning a cow, which died due to electrocution, before it was buried last night.
On getting to know of the skinning, the “gau rakshaks” (cow vigilantes) went to the place and beat up the duo, identified as Mokati Elisha and Lazer, suspecting that they had killed the animal.
The two were admitted to a hospital in Amalapuram for treatment and Elisha’s condition was said to be serious.
“We have registered a case under SCs/STs (Prevention of Atrocities) Act against some persons, who are yet to be identified. We are investigating the case and gathering clues about the suspects,” a police official said over phone from Amalapuram.
The incident took place amid a nationwide furore over the atrocities against Muslims and Dalits by cow vigilantes. Last month, a Dalit family was flogged by so called ‘cow protectors’ in Gujarat’s Una for allegedly skinning the bovine.
Three days back, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in his first public denouncement of cow vigilantes, had said that he felt enraged at such “anti-social elements”, who indulged in crimes by the night and masqueraded as cow protectors by the day.
A day later, Modi had appealed to people from Telangana to beware of “fake” cow protectors as they were trying to create “tension and conflict” in the society and said that “if you have to attack, attack me” but stop attacking “my Dalit bretheren”.