Cow vigilantism

‘It’s a political conspiracy,’ says Pehlu Khan’s son as police clear six named in dying declaration

The investigation into the lynching of the diary farmer in Rajasthan in April will continue against nine other persons.

In a statement made to the police before he died of his injuries in April, dairy farmer Pehlu Khan, who was attacked by a mob of cow protectors in Alwar, Rajasthan, had identified six men as the main culprits. All six have now been given a clean chit by the Rajasthan police, senior police officials said. Though their names were mentioned in the First Information Report about the lynching, which has seen, the police were unable to arrest the men because they went into hiding.

The investigation will continue against nine other persons who have been identified in the case diary so far. The police are still trying to ascertain the identities of even more people who are believed to have been involved in the lyching, said a police official who did not wish to be identified.

On April 1, Khan, 55, a dairy farmer from Nuh in Haryana, his son Irshad, and three others, were returning home after buying cows from a trader in Jaipur when a mob stopped their vehicles in Alwar district and thrashed them, accusing them of transporting the cattle for slaughter. Khan succumbed to his injuries on April 3.

“This is part of a political conspiracy,” said Irshad Khan, who was injured in the attack. “If they were not involved, why would their names randomly emerge in my father’s dying declaration? They were identified from the spot. Many people who had gathered around but my father clearly remembered six names. They were all calling out to each other.”

Irshad Khan added that it was clear that those men are influential and have political protection which is why there was pressure on the police to let them go.

While a case of murder, rioting, unlawful assembly, criminal assault and causing damage to property was registered on the basis of Pehlu Khan’s complaint, Khan, his son, and his neighbour were also booked for illegally transporting cattle on a complaint by an Alwar resident. The First Information Reports were registered on April 2.

‘Travesty of justice’

The police closed the investigation against the six persons based on the statements of employees of a cow shelter in the area that the six men frequented, as well as call details and tower location records of their mobile phones, the Hindustan Times reported. The cow shelter staff have testified that the six men were present in the shelter, 4 km from the site of the crime, at the time of the incident. The news report said that the police investigation showed that the men’s phone records supported this claim.

Eminent lawyer and civil rights activist Prashant Bhushan called the development a “travesty of justice”.

“It is totally absurd for the police to give a clean chit to persons named by the victim in his statement before death,” he said. “It clearly shows that the police investigation is biased and it raises concerns about the functioning of the police system in a state led by the Bharatiya Janata Party which is visibly protecting murderers.”

The six men are Om Yadav, 45, Hukum Chand Yadav, 44, Sudhir Yadav, 45, Jagmal Yadav, 73, Naveen Sharma, 48, and Rahul Saini, 24. In his statement, Khan had also told the police that these men had claimed to be members of Hindutva groups like the Vishva Hindu Parishad and the Bajrang Dal.

“The six went absconding after the incident and could not be arrested,” said the police official. “The police had declared rewards of Rs 5,000 for information on each of the six absconding men, which now stands cancelled.”

In the days following the incident, the police identified more accused men on the basis of video footage and nabbed seven persons, including two suspected to be minors. According to news reports, between July 12 and August 31, five of them were released on bail.

After the case was transferred to the Crime Branch in July, two more persons were identified and named in the case diary but they too are absconding, the police official said.

Support our journalism by subscribing to Scroll+ here. We welcome your comments at
Sponsored Content BY 

Following a mountaineer as he reaches the summit of Mount Everest

Accounts from Vikas Dimri’s second attempt reveal the immense fortitude and strength needed to summit the Everest.

Vikas Dimri made a huge attempt last year to climb the Mount Everest. Fate had other plans. Thwarted by unfavourable weather at the last minute, he came so close and yet not close enough to say he was at the top. But that did not deter him. Vikas is back on the Everest trail now, and this time he’s sharing his experiences at every leg of the journey.

The Everest journey began from the Lukla airport, known for its dicey landing conditions. It reminded him of the failed expedition, but he still moved on to Namche Bazaar - the staging point for Everest expeditions - with a positive mind. Vikas let the wisdom of the mountains guide him as he battled doubt and memories of the previous expedition. In his words, the Everest taught him that, “To conquer our personal Everest, we need to drop all our unnecessary baggage, be it physical or mental or even emotional”.

Vikas used a ‘descent for ascent’ approach to acclimatise. In this approach, mountaineers gain altitude during the day, but descend to catch some sleep. Acclimatising to such high altitudes is crucial as the lack of adequate oxygen can cause dizziness, nausea, headache and even muscle death. As Vikas prepared to scale the riskiest part of the climb - the unstable and continuously melting Khumbhu ice fall - he pondered over his journey so far.

His brother’s diagnosis of a heart condition in his youth was a wakeup call for the rather sedentary Vikas, and that is when he started focusing on his health more. For the first time in his life, he began to appreciate the power of nutrition and experimented with different diets and supplements for their health benefits. His quest for better health also motivated him to take up hiking, marathon running, squash and, eventually, a summit of the Everest.

Back in the Himalayas, after a string of sleepless nights, Vikas and his team ascended to Camp 2 (6,500m) as planned, and then descended to Base Camp for the basic luxuries - hot shower, hot lunch and essential supplements. Back up at Camp 2, the weather played spoiler again as a jet stream - a fast-flowing, narrow air current - moved right over the mountain. Wisdom from the mountains helped Vikas maintain perspective as they were required to descend 15km to Pheriche Valley. He accepted that “strength lies not merely in chasing the big dream, but also in...accepting that things could go wrong.”

At Camp 4 (8,000m), famously known as the death zone, Vikas caught a clear glimpse of the summit – his dream standing rather tall in front of him.

It was the 18th of May 2018 and Vikas finally reached the top. The top of his Everest…the top of Mount Everest!

Watch the video below to see actual moments from Vikas’ climb.


Vikas credits his strength to dedication, exercise and a healthy diet. He credits dietary supplements for helping him sustain himself in the inhuman conditions on Mount Everest. On heights like these where the oxygen supply drops to 1/3rd the levels on the ground, the body requires 3 times the regular blood volume to pump the requisite amount of oxygen. He, thus, doesn’t embark on an expedition without double checking his supplements and uses Livogen as an aid to maintain adequate amounts of iron in his blood.

Livogen is proud to have supported Vikas Dimri on his ambitious quest and salutes his spirit. To read more about the benefits of iron, see here. To read Vikas Dimri’s account of his expedition, click here.

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Livogen and not by the Scroll editorial team.