3 alleged cattle thieves lynched in Bihar
Police said two of them died on the spot in Pithaoura Nandlal village under Banipur police station of Saran district, 70km northwest of the state’s capital, Patna. The third man died during the course of treatment.Updated: Jul 19, 2019 23:51 IST
Three men were beaten to death by a mob on the suspicion that they were stealing cattle in a village in Bihar’s Saran district on Thursday night, the police said.
Police said two of them died on the spot in Pithaoura Nandlal village under Banipur police station of Saran district, 70km northwest of the state’s capital, Patna. The third man died during the course of treatment.
The deceased have been identified as Naushad Alam, Raju Nat and Videsh Nat, all residents of Paigampur, also under Banipur police station.
Saran (Chapra) superintendent of police Hari Kishore Rai said the men were attacked when they were allegedly trying to steal cattle. Residents woke up after hearing the cries of the animals and some of them brutally assaulted the men.
Rai said three people have been taken into custody and a case has been lodged at the Baniyapur police station.
“Raids are on to arrest others involved in the crime,” he added.
Villagers claimed that four men had come to steal cattle, and when they tried to catch them, one managed to flee. They alleged that three goats were previously stolen from the courtyard of Rajbali Ram.
The cattle, too, belonged to Ram.
The family of those killed denied the men were involved in the theft. “My brother was not a thief. He was to get married very soon,” said Shailesh Nat, Videsh Nat’s brother.
Police forces were rushed to the spot even as tension rose in the village.
The families of those killed and the accused clashed at Sadar Hospital in Chapra when the bodies reached the hospital for the post mortem examination. Police had to use force to bring the situation under control.
Former chief minister and leader of the Opposition in the state council, Rabri Devi, flayed the state government over the lynching. “The mob lynching of three persons reflects the sorry state of affairs in the state on the law and order front. The Nitish Kumar government claims it has brought in ‘sushashan’( good governance) but minorities and people from the Scheduled Caste are being targeted and killed. It is government failure,” she said, while talking to reporters at the state council.
Rabri Devi said the government should immediately arrest the culprits. “There has been a spurt in crime incidents in the state and this is an alarming sign,” she said.
KC Tyagi, general secretary of the Janata Dal (United), which rules the state in a coalition with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), condemned the incident and said those involved in the crime would be arrested soon.
The Congress member in the council, Prem Chandra Mishra, suggested that the incident pointed to the growing trend of violence in the state. “Bihar seems to have slipped into the phase of anarchy and people are taking law into their own hands,” he added, pointing out that a senior Congress leader, Mohammad Faqruddin Khan, was gunned down in West Champaran on Friday.
The incident also rocked the state legislative council where Rabri Devi and other opposition members staged protests by storming the well of the House. They demanded the immediate arrest of those involved in the ghastly incident. They also slammed the police and the administration.