September 16, 2017 | By Sikh Siyasat Bureau
New Delhi: Responding to reports of the Rajasthan police clearing six men suspected of involvement in the lynching of Pehlu Khan, a dairy farmer falsely accused of being a cow smuggler, Asmita Basu, Programmes Director, Amnesty International India said.
“Before Pehlu Khan died, he named six men – all members of groups with links to the ruling party – who he said led the attack on him. The Rajasthan police’s conclusion that these men were not present at the scene of the crime must not now lead to impunity for the killing of Pehlu Khan.
“Civil society groups have alleged that the Rajasthan government is under pressure to shield vigilante ‘cow protection’ groups. Authorities must ensure that the investigation into this brutal crime is conducted independently and impartially. Otherwise, they risk further undermining the rule of law in the state.”
55-year-old farmer Pehlu Khan and four other Muslim men were assaulted by a mob near a highway in Alwar, Rajasthan, on 1 April 2017. Khan died two days later. The mob falsely accused the men of being cow smugglers. Following the killing, the Home Minister of Rajasthan, in a statement that appeared to justify the killing, said that Khan belonged to a family of cow smugglers.