Two Maharashtra men beaten up on suspicion of being cow smugglers, hospitalised
Two men from Maharashtra were allegedly beaten up by villagers on Sunday in Madhya Pradesh’s (MP) Betul district, located around 175km south of state capital Bhopal, on suspicion of being cow smugglers. The men were transporting cows from MP to Maharashtra and had valid permits.
Majid Khan and Sohil Khan, residents of Maharashtra’s Akola and Amravati districts, respectively, were admitted to a hospital in Betul and their health is stated to be stable, police said.
Police have seized three mini-trucks—one from Pabal village and other two from the neighbouring Gaunapur village—in which 30 cows were being transported to Maharashtra.
Majid, the driver, and Sohail, the cleaner, were detained by villagers at Pabal on suspicion of being cow smugglers. The drivers and cleaners of the other two mini-trucks managed to escape, leaving their vehicles behind.
Later, a first information report (FIR) was registered against the six persons, including Majid and Sohail, and they were booked under the relevant sections of MP Cow Progeny Slaughter Prevention Act, 2004, police said.
A video clip of the villagers beating Majid and Sohail went viral on social media on Monday.
Majid told mediapersons at the hospital that he was transporting the cows on the basis of a valid permit, but the villagers refused to listen to him. The villagers not only thrashed Majid and Sohail, but also snatched their mobile phones and money.
“Some villagers on Sunday stopped a mini-truck at Pabal village in Betul district. The villagers asked Majid and Sohail to show what were they carrying in the truck. However, both of them refused to open the truck and picked a quarrel with the villagers. A large mob forcefully opened the truck’s tailgate and found the cows. They suspected Majid and Sohail of being cow smugglers, dragged them out of the vehicle and assaulted them,” said Santosh Pandre, an inspector of Multai police station.
“A probe is in progress. If the villagers are found guilty, action will be taken,” said Simala Prasad, the superintendent of police (SP), Betul.
(With inputs from Mayank Bhargava)