In a bizarre turn of events, Pehlu Khan, the cattle smuggler has been charge-sheeted posthumously for cow-smuggling in Rajasthan, even as the Congress Government is looking for ways to save it's vote-bank
- Agnima Sharma
Finally, Pehlu Khan, the cow smuggler who was beaten up by villagers after being caught red-handed while smuggling cattle, has been declared the prime accused posthumously in a police charge sheet. His sons Arif, Irshad and his pick-up driver, Khan Mohammad, have also been held in the case.
“As dead people cannot be charge-sheeted, Pehlu Khan’s name has been summarised amongst the accused,” said Behrod SHO Sugaan Singh said while speaking to Organiser.
Also, Alwar Superintendent of Police Anil Paris Deshmukh confirmed, “The charge-sheet was produced in the court on May 24 along with three persons under different sections of the Rajasthan Bovine Animal Act, which prohibits cattle to be transported to other states without the due permission of district administration. As Pehlu Khan had died, he has not been chargesheeted," he added.
Meanwhile, this news spread like, and the Congress Government was seen to be worried as the last charge-sheet was filed on December 30 soon after the new government took over. Hence, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot to retain its vote bank immediately commented the probe, in this case, was made during the former BJP Government. He also promised to reinvestigate the case if there were any discrepancies found in the case.
“Investigation, in this case, was carried during the previous BJP government. The case shall be reinvestigated if any discrepancies are found here,” he said in a tweet. Later, he released a series of tweets saying that Pehlu khan has not been named in the charge sheet submitted by police in December.
One of his tweets said, “This is a separate case which was registered and investigated under the previous government in 2017-18 against Mr Arif, Mr Irshad and Mr Khan Mohd (Transporter).”
It needs to be furnished here that Pehlu Khan, a resident of Nuh district in Mewat was beaten by villagers when he was caught transporting cattle to Haryana. Khan later succumbed to his injuries on April 3, 2017 in a hospital.
Speaking on the new development in this case, Rajasthan BJP MLA Gyan Dev Ahuja claimed that Pehlu Khan and his family were habitual offenders. He also said that allegations made against the 'gau rakshaks' and the Hindu Parishad are wrong.
Meanwhile, the entire episode snowballed into a political controversy with AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi on his twitter slamming the Congress government.
"Congress in 'Power' is a replica of BJP, Muslims of Rajasthan must realise this, reject such individuals/organisations who are brokers of Congress party & start developing their independent political platform, 70 years is a long time please CHANGE, he tweeted.
Even Priyanka Chaturvedi, a Shiv Sena member tweeted, “Pehlu Khan, the unfortunate victim of mob lynching, has been charge sheeted by the Rajasthan government. The choice of silence and outrage levels of selective liberals is fascinating. Bye,” she said.
Further, the news brought in excitement amongst the residents of Behrod who since years have been fighting the menace of cow smuggling in their belt.
Speaking to Organiser, Vijay Singh, one of the residents of Behrod, said, “The charge-sheeting of Pehlu Khan’s sons bring in a lot of hopes for us. We are tired of seeing our cattle being stolen after every alternate day. Hope this judgment brings in fear amongst the cow smugglers and they stop their act. Many of our brothers and sons are already reeling behind bars for no charge of theirs but because they tried protecting their cattle. We hope for their come back as well,” he added.