Enamul Hafiz Latifee compiles,
On the morning of Tuesday, 28 April 2020, two sadhus were found dead in a temple in Pagona village in the Anupshahr area of Uttar Pradesh’s Bulandshahr district. The accused in the case was arrested by the police the same morning and an FIR has been registered at the Anupshahr police station under Section 302 (murder) of the Indian Penal Code.
Acknowledging the incident, Bulandshahr SSP Santosh Kumar Singh said, “Two saints named Jagdish alias Rangi Das and Sher Singh who were 55 and 35 respectively have died. In the same village, there was a man named Morari urf Raju, who is from the scheduled caste (Dalit). Two days ago he had stolen a chimta (a musical instrument used during prayers) belonging to one of the priests after which the priests had scolded him. Then on the intervening night of 27 and 28 April, Raju got high on bhang he took a stick and killed the two priests.”
While initially, the SSP said that a sword was used as the weapon to kill the two men, it has now been clarified that a stick was used.
When The Quint asked the SSP why he mentioned the caste of the accused, he said, “These days the media often misrepresents news by giving it a false communal colour and motive. The reason I had to mention the caste is to highlight that the accused and victims belong to the same community (Hindus).”
Speaking about how they nabbed the accused, Singh said, “In the morning the villagers had seen him. The villagers were looking for him everywhere. He was found two kilometers away from the crime spot in an inebriated condition. He is not in the state to talk right now.”
The photos show Raju bleeding, Singh told -that the villagers had beaten him up, “The villagers caught him first and beat the accused up. They had an inkling about him being the accused as they knew about the fight as well.”
About hundreds of people from the village had gathered when the accused was handed over to the police.
“The accused has been arrested. As per initial probe, it has been found that few days back, he had taken away a belonging (chimta) of priests after which they had scolded him, following which, he murdered the priests today,” the Singh said.
Meanwhile, Bulandshahr district magistrate Ravindra Singh said, “There has been talk about a chimta (a musical instrument used during prayers) being stolen, but we have interviewed the accused right now… he continues to be inebriated and is saying that it was god’s will. The motive needs to be investigated. Right now, all he is saying that it was god’s will and there was no personal enmity.”
Circle Officer Kotwali, Atul Choubey, said the accused has been sent to judicial custody, the weapon used in the crime has been recovered and the postmortem of the bodies has been done, ANI reported.
The murder of sadhus in Uttar Pradesh comes after three persons, including two sadhus, were lynched in Palghar, Maharashtra while they were on their way to a funeral in neighbouring Silvassa.
The incident took place on the night of 16 April 2020 when three men were going from Mumbai in a car towards Surat in Gujarat to attend the funeral. Their vehicle was stopped near a village in Palghar district where the three were dragged out of the car and beaten to death with sticks by a mob on suspicion that they were child-lifters.
The deceased were identified as Chikne Maharaj Kalpavrukshagiri (70), Sushilgiri Maharaj (35), and driver Nilesh Telgade (30).