Palghar lynching: The statement comes days after two sadhus from Juna Akhada and a driver were lynched by a mob near a village in Palghar district of Maharashtra.
Palghar lynching: Former Mumbai Police Commissioner and Bharatiya Janata Party MP Satya Pal Singh on Wednesday said that it was necessary to probe who provoked the villagers of Palghar to lynch three sadhus after labelling them as thief. Singh said he was the Inspector General of Palghar tribal area a few years ago and there was no crime there but now attempts are being made to convert people in the name of social service. The remark comes days after two sadhus from Juna Akhada and a driver were lynched by a mob near a village in Palghar district of Maharashtra.
वर्षों पहले #पालघर आदिवासी क्षेत्र का मैं पुलिस आई.जी था। आदिवासी क्षेत्र में अपराध ना के बराबर है परंतु छदम रूप में सेवा व लालच को हथियार बनाकर धर्म परिवर्तन कराने की साजिशें चालू हैं। साधुओं को चोर बताकर मारने के लिये ग्रामीणों को किसने भड़काया–यह पता लगाना अत्यंत जरूरी है।
— Dr. Satya Pal Singh (@dr_satyapal) April 22, 2020
According to a report in PTI, they were going from Mumbai in a car towards Surat to attend a funeral. Their vehicle was stopped and the three were dragged out of the car and beaten to death with sticks by a mob on suspicion that they were child-lifters, the report said. The incident happened on the night of April 16. Later, they were identified as Chikne Maharaj Kalpavrukshagiri (70), Sushilgiri Maharaj (35), and driver Nilesh Telgade (30).
Soon after the video of the attack surfaced, the BJP targeted the ruling parties in the state and blamed CPI(M) for the lynching. BJP national spokesperson Sambit Patra said the place where the killing of saints happened comes under Dahanu assembly constituency, which is the stronghold of the CPI (M). He said that the sitting legislator was from the communist party and the NCP has an alliance with it in the region. Patra further said that the killing was the work of Marxist goons and that was why the entire left brigade was silent. The NCP is part of the current coalition government in Maharashtra.
Another BJP spokesperson Amit Malviya said that ‘suspicion of theft’ was a convenient excuse to justify Palghar. “The saffron clad sadhus were pleading with cops to protect them, who let the mob lynch them…Maharashtra is collapsing, from health to law and order…CM (Uddhav Thackeray) is clueless, others too vile. Balasaheb’s legacy deserved better,” he said in a tweet.
Meanwhile, 101 suspects have so far been arrested in the case and the probe has been transferred to Maharashtra Crime Investigation Department (CID).