The Madhya Pradesh Police on Thursday arrested a Bharatiya Janata Party leader for allegedly provoking a mob that killed a farmer, and injured five others in Dhar district the day before, The Indian Express reported. The police have arrested three others, and are looking for the other accused, said Superintendent of Police AK Singh.
Hundreds of people from Khirakia and Junapani villages chased the farmers, who were in two cars, for 25 km after suspecting they were kidnappers. The mob caught up with them in Borlai village, which falls under the Manawar police station’s jurisdiction, and attacked hem with batons and big boulders. A 35-year-old farmer identified as Ganesh Khasi was lynched. The state government has announced Rs 2-lakh compensation for Khasi’s next of kin.
The police said BJP leader Ramesh Junapani had led the mob to believe that a gang of child-lifters was active in the region. Five policemen, including the officer in charge of Manawar station, have been suspended, and a Special Investigation Team has been formed.
Meanwhile, BJP leader and former Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan accused the Congress government of turning the state into “Talibani Pradesh”. He claimed that the victims had gone to the village to collect money. He alleged that local police personnel did not do anything even though the farmers had informed them about possible law-and-order problems.
Chief Minister Kamal Nath’s media coordinator Narendra Singh Saluja accused the saffron party of politicising the matter even though its own worker is accused of inciting the mob. In response, Chouhan told the ruling party it cannot shirk its responsibility by pointing out one person from a mob of 500.