A Rajasthan court on Thursday accepted the police application that sought permission to reopen an investigation into a case against a truck operator and the sons of Pehlu Khan, who was lynched in Alwar district in 2017 by a mob of cow vigilantes, PTI reported.
Alwar district’s Behror town Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate’s court has accepted the police plea, Assistant Public Prosecutor Pradeep Agarwal told the news agency. Pehlu Khan was transporting cows to his hometown in Haryana in April 2017, when a mob attacked him and his companions. Khan died in the attack.
The Rajasthan Police had filed a chargesheet in December against Khan’s sons, Arif and Irshad Khan, and Khan Mohammed, who owned the pick-up truck being used by the dairy farmer to transport the animals. It was filed under Sections 5, 8 and 9 of the Rajasthan Bovine Animal (Prohibition of Slaughter and Regulation of Temporary Migration or Export) Act, 1995. The chargesheet was submitted in a court on May 29.
The police had also named Khan in the chargesheet for cow smuggling, and said the offences against him under the act was proven. The police, however, said Khan was not formally accused since he had died by the time the chargesheet was filed.
Alwar Superintendent of Police Paris Deshmukh had said Khan’s family had submitted an application to the police. “After examining it, we have applied in the court on Saturday, asking it to return the file for further investigation,” Deshmukh had said.
He also said the family claimed they were taking the cattle to Tapukara in Alwar district and the truck owner claimed he had sold the vehicle before the incident.
In June, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot had rejected a news report in The Indian Express according to which Khan was named by the police in a chargesheet submitted on December 30, 13 days after the Congress formed a government in the state. Gehlot said the case reported by the newspaper was registered and investigated in 2017-’18 during the rule of the previous Bharatiya Janata Party government.
Seven FIRs have been lodged at the Behror police station so far in the case, according to Deccan Herald. One FIR was filed in connection with the lynching, while six were registered for cattle smuggling. In the case pertaining to Khan’s lynching, seven accused were arrested and two minors detained. The chargesheet against the nine accused was submitted in the additional district judge’s court in Behror on February 25 this year.