The Rajasthan Police arrested five people for allegedly assaulting two men who were transporting cattle to Madhya Pradesh on Tuesday night, The Indian Express reported on Thursday.
The injured men were identified as Praveen Tiwari, who owned the cattle, and truck driver Ahmad Ali. They received treatment at a hospital in Kota, the police said.
“My family is engaged in the business of dairy farming near Dewas in Madhya Pradesh,” Tiwari told The Indian Express. “I had come to Jaipur to purchase bovines. I bought seven milch cows for Rs 2.25 lakh in Jaipur.”
The cattle owner said the attack occurred near the Hanging Bridge toll plaza in Kota district. “The toll plaza workers along with several other people started assaulting us as soon as they saw we were transporting cows,” Tiwari said. “Over 40 people assembled in the area and everybody was beating us. Some claimed to be members of Hindu outfits. They were trying to force us to confess that we were taking the animals for slaughter.”
“I told them that I am a Brahmin and transporting milch cows, which are usually not smuggled for culling, but the mob did not listen to us and continued to beat us,” Tiwari told Hindustan Times.
Ahmad Ali said he has been driving inter-state vehicles for 22 years but has never been assaulted before. “The men were abusing and beating us,” he said. “That is when somebody who was passing by informed the police. If the police had not come, they would have killed us.”
The police identified the arrested as toll plaza employees Yogesh Kumar, Arjun Davar, Naresh Kumar alias Nikku, Arjun Patona and Ajay Hari, according to Hindustan Times. The police have filed a case against nine other unidentified people.
“During questioning, the accused have revealed that they felt the animals were being illegally transported,” said Rajendra Kumar Meena, station house officer of the RK Puram police station. “We are investigating the role of some outsiders too who were present at the time of the attack.”
Meena said they would investigate if the accused had any links with cow protection groups.
The attack occurred the day the Supreme Court told the Parliament to consider creating a new penal provision to deal with incidents of vigilantism, saying that a “mobocracy” cannot be allowed in society.