A 30-year-old man on Tuesday was allegedly lynched and burned by a mob in Besrajara village of Jharkhand’s Simdega district on the suspicion that cut trees to steal wood, PTI reported citing the police. No arrests have been made yet.
The incident occurred two weeks after the Jharkhand Assembly passed the Prevention of Mob Violence and Mob Lynching Bill, 2021 to avert mob brutalities in the state. The proposed law empowers the district magistrate and the police to take effective measures to stop lynching in their jurisdictions.
The man, identified as Sanju Pradhan, was dragged out of his house by a mob that alleged he was cutting trees illegally from a sacred area, The Indian Express reported.
Kolebira police station in-charge Rameshwar Bhagat said that the villagers did not want the trees to be cut, which they had conveyed to the district’s forest department in July last year, The Indian Express reported. “A gram sabha was held and it was decided that Pradhan won’t cut trees in the area as it was an important place for them,” he said.
However, Pradhan allegedly cut trees again, which angered the villagers. They called a meeting to discuss the matter, which was not attended by Pradhan.
“An angry mob of villagers brought him to the Besrajara village [in Simdega district] and beat him to death,” Bhagat said. “They also set his body on fire. We rushed to the spot after we received the information. We could reach the place only after negotiating with the villagers.”
Simgeda Superintendent of Police Shams Tabrez said that Pradhan’s body was sent for postmortem, NDTV reported. “FIR is being registered with appropriate sections,” he said. “Identification of accused is going on.”