Ahmedabad: Four Dalit youth were severely beaten up and dragged on the road for nearly a kilometre in Gir Somnath district of Gujarat for allegedly possessing cow beef. The crime came to light after a video of the assault went viral on social media.
Five persons were booked under Section 307 (attempt to murder), Section 395 (loot) of the Indian Penal Code and the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. Three of them were later arrested.
The youths from Samadhiyala village, belonging to a community of leather traders, came to Una town in Saurashtra region to remove hide from a cow carcass. When they reached the town's bus stand on Monday, they were accosted by a group of men said to be Shiv Sena members.
The youth were stripped half-naked, tied to a Sport Utility Vehicle in a crowded area and severely beaten up with iron pipes for over half an hour. No one from a large crowd of onlookers rescued the youth.
The assailants, claiming to be working for cow protection, later dragged the youth to a police station a kilometre away and handed them over to police.
After members of the Dalit community rallied at the police station, an FIR was registered against five men, including Pramodgiri Goswami, who claimed to be district president of Shiv Sena and an organisation working for cow protection.
The injured youth were sent to a local hospital for treatment.