Cow vigilantes in Chikmagalur: Seven from Bajrang Dal booked for attacking Dalits
An official from Jayapura police station of the area said they learnt from “informants” — Bajrang Dal members — that a stolen cow had been slaughtered at Muttappa’s house.
AFTER INITIALLY filing a case against three members of a Dalit family in Karnataka’s Chikmagalur district on suspicion of cattle theft and cow slaughter, local police have booked seven members of Bajrang Dal’s local unit on charges of raiding their home and attacking the Dalit family members.
The right-wing vigilantes have been booked on a counter-complaint filed by the family of Muttappa, a Dalit living in Kundur village of the district. They alleged that the seven raided their home last Sunday to inspect whether the family had slaughtered a cow. The first FIR was filed on a complaint by Bajrang Dal members, who allegedly raided Muttappa’s home and later informed police.
An official from Jayapura police station of the area said they learnt from “informants” — Bajrang Dal members — that a stolen cow had been slaughtered at Muttappa’s house. SI Chandrashekhar led a team to the home and allegedly caught three people, including Muttappa.
“On raiding the house we found five people cutting meat. We arrested Muttappa, Balaraj and Dhanush and booked them under various sections for cruelty against animals. They were later released on bail,” he said. “We are probing whether the cow was stolen.”
On Monday, a member of Muttappa’s family filed a counter-complaint against the Bajrang Dal men. The complaint alleged that the vigilantes beat them up before police arrived. Police lodged a case of rioting and atrocity against Dalits against seven people — Annu, Sampath, Santosh, Manjushree, Rajesh, Sundaresh, and Sandeep. SP K Santosh Babu confirmed that the seven are Bajrang Dal members. They had reportedly already obtained anticipatory bail and were not arrested.
“We are investigating both cases and will file a chargesheet as soon as possible,’’ the SP said.