Three days after the brutal attack on 55-year-old Ikhlaq and his 21-year-old son Danish, the lanes of Bisada village wear a deserted look. Most houses in the vicinity of the victim’s house have been vacated.
Women in the neighbouring houses, who used to have a round of evening tea and gossip with Ikhlaq’s mother and wife as recent as three days ago, now prefer to stay away — just peeping from their windows even as cries of mourning rise from Ikhlaq’s house.
“I shouted and cried for help from the neighbours but all they slammed their doors on our faces. We have celebrated every festival together and it has been about 72 hours since the eventful night and not even one of the women of the neighbouring houses has come to console us,” said Asghari, Ikhlaq’s 70-year-old mother.
Women from the neighbourhood are in a fix as their sons and grandsons have been taken into custody by the police for questioning.
Sandeep Sisodia, one of the accused, was a student and was suffering from malaria when the police took him for questioning, they said.
“It was around 10.30pm that my grandson was sleeping in the house when the police knocked on the door. They dragged my grandson by the collar, saying that he is being taken for questioning,” said 81-year-old Shanti Devi, grandmother of Sisodia. She said her grandson was innocent and would never kill a man.
Devi said the police went and knocked on each and every house in the adjacent lane and took away one or two youngsters from each house.
“Around 10pm on Monday, we heard some noises coming from Ikhlaq’s house. My elder son had just come back from work, on hearing the noise, he went outside to check what is happening. Since it was dark, he could not make out anything and went to sleep,” said Dheeraj Singh whose two sons are accused in the case.
The police, however, said the accused had been held on the basis of the names mentioned in the FIR.
“We have arrested the people who were named in the FIR by the complainant Ikhlaq’s daughter (Mehraaj). The probe is still going on and the guilty won’t be spared,” said Kiran S, senior superintendent of police, Gautam Budh Nagar.