After Bulandshahr lynching, fear-struck Muslims are ready to leave the village

Published on May 05, 2017 12:11 AM IST

Gulam Mohammad was thrashed to death by HYV activists, who were enraged when a Muslim boy and a Hindu girl eloped last week.

The four Muslim families living in the Thakur-dominated village now fear for their lives.(S Raju/HT Photo)
The four Muslim families living in the Thakur-dominated village now fear for their lives.(S Raju/HT Photo)
Hindustan Times, Pahasu, Bulandshahr | ByS Raju

After an elderly Muslim man was killed by suspected Hindu Yuva Vahini (HYV) activists in Bulandshahr’s Sohi on Tuesday, the four Muslim families in the village are living in fear.

Gulam Mohammad, 55, was thrashed to death by HYV activists, who were enraged when a Muslim boy and a Hindu girl eloped last week.

“We are feeling suffocated and are willing to move out of the village,” said Yasin, one of the four sons of the deceased.

Equally petrified are his uncle Pappu and brother Vakil. Other male members of the family, meanwhile, have gone underground due to fear of being attacked by Hindu activists.

“We are labourers. How can we earn our livelihood in such fear?” asked Yasin. “How long can police protect us if someone has decided to harm us?” said another community member, who is ready to live in a rented house at a safer location.

The four Muslim families have been living in the Thakur-dominated village for generations. Their Hindu neighbours have always taken care of them, but Mohammad’s death seems to have shattered the age-old
harmony.

Vakil has named villager Gavendra and five other unidentified Vahini activists as the killers of his father.

When the attack took place, most of the male members were out of the village to help cops trace the eloped couple.

The issue erupted when Yusuf, a young member of the Muslim community, eloped with a Thakur girl of a neighbouring village last week.

Yasin claimed main accused Gavendra, a resident of Sohi village, and his aide had threatened Muslim families at least twice before the lynching.

They had reported the matter to Pahasu police and village pradhan’s husband Arun Pratap but no action was taken against them. Pratap, however, claimed that both communities live in harmony and the entire village attended the burial of Mohammad on Tuesday.

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