The Madhya Pradesh Police on Saturday arrested five people for beating up two men and a woman in Seoni district the previous day on the suspicion that they were carrying beef, PTI reported.
In a video that was shared widely on social media, a group of men tie two men to a tree and beat them up. One of the victims was untied and pushed to the ground and thrashed with sticks. The attackers then forced him to hit the woman who was with them with a slipper and shout “Jai Shri Ram”.
One of the accused was identified as “Ram Sena” leader Shubham Baghel. “We came to know that Baghel had stopped one woman and two men on Friday and he along with his five friends had beaten up the men,” local police officer GS Uikey told ANI. “The video of the incident had gone viral. We have registered a case against all the accused and five of them have been arrested. They all will be sent to judicial remand soon.”
Senior police official Gopal Khandel told NDTV that samples of the meat have been sent to a laboratory in Hyderabad. “We have no information if the accused are linked to any political group,” the officer said. The police have also arrested the three victims for alleged possession of beef, according to PTI.
All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen chief Asaduddin Owaisi condemned the incident. “This is how Muslims are treated by Vigilantes created by Modi voters,” he tweeted. “Welcome to a New India which will [be] Inclusive and as PMOIndia said Secularism Ka Niqaab.”
“Watch How The Mind Has Been Hacked In Last 5 Years, I Am Sure This Is Not Radicalisation For Modi Voters But A Natural Treatment For Muslims,” he added in another tweet. “This Will Be Watched By Muslim Youths Will Increase Alienation [and] Marginalisation - Well Done Hackers.”
Peoples Democratic Party chief Mehbooba Mufti asked Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath to take action against the accused. “Horrified to see cow vigilantes thrash an innocent muslim with such impunity in MP,” she said on Twitter.