A Muslim man was beaten up, forced to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’, and lick his own spit in Dhanbad, Jharkhand, allegedly by Bharatiya Janata Party workers, The Hindu reported on Friday. After a video of the incident went viral, Chief Minister Hemant Soren tweeted, asking district officials to investigate the incident and take action.
The incident took place at a protest held by BJP workers and supporters against Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s alleged security lapse in Punjab earlier in the week. The BJP’s Dhanbad MLA and MP were present at the protest, according to The Indian Express.
The man was identified as 32-year-old Zeeshan Khan, the English daily reported.
One person has been arrested in connection with the incident. The police have said more arrests will be made as the investigation proceeds.
Khan was reportedly passing by the protest site and verbally abused party state chief Dipak Prakash, after which a mob assaulted him.
An FIR was filed after a complaint by Khan’s brother Rehan Khan. Rehan Khan also said that his brother has been under treatment for a mental illness since 2012.
Local Congress leaders have condemned the incident, The Telegraph reported. Shamsher Alam, the Dhanbad’s state executive committee member of the Congress, told the newspaper that he helped Rehan Khan file an FIR after he learnt about the incident. “We can’t let such an act against a person of a minority community go unpunished,” he said. “We will pursue the matter to its logical conclusion.”