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Two lynched over suspicion of cow theft in West Bengal’s Jalpaiguri district

Picture for representational purpose.   | Photo Credit: The Hindu

Two persons were lynched at a village in the Dhupguri block of West Bengal’s Jalpaiguri district in the early hours of August 27, 2017 under suspicion of stealing cows. Police has lodged a murder case and no one has been arrested so far.

“Hafizul Sheikh of Dhubri district in Assam and Anwar Hussain of Patlakhawa village of Cooch Behar district were beaten to death by locals at the Dadon II gram panchayat area in Jalpaiguri’s Dhupguri block,” a senior district police official told The Hindu. He also said the villagers noticed that a pick-up van carrying cows was aimlessly wandering around the area. When challenged by the villagers the van picked up speed and tried to escape, the official said.

“However, the villagers soon captured the van and caught hold of Mr. Sheikh and Mr. Hussain. The driver fled from the spot. After questioning the two for a while the locals had beaten them to death,” said the police official. Police reached the spot after sometime and rushed the two to a local hospital where doctors declared them dead. The deceased did not have valid documents to transport cattle, police official said. The investigators are not yet sure whether the deceased were stealing cows.

“But what we could not figure out is why the deceased were wandering in the village so late at night,” the senior district police official said.

Jalpaiguri Superintendent of Police Amitabha Maity said, “Stern action will be taken against those involved in the case. If they thought that the cows were being transported illegally they should have informed the police instead of taking the law in their own hands.” A large police contingent has been deployed in the area.

“This is the first case of lynching under suspicion of cow theft in Dhupguri in recent years. However, being about 30 km from Bangladesh border, cow smuggling often takes place in Dhupguri,” Jatishwar Bharati, Jalpaiguri district secretary of the Association for Protection of Democratic Rights [APDR] said.

In June 2017, three persons were lynched in the Chopra block of the State’s Uttar Dinajpur district for alleged cattle theft.

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Printable version | Nov 29, 2021 12:29:21 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/two-lynched-over-suspicion-of-cow-theft-in-west-bengals-jalpaiguri-district/article19570965.ece

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