NEW DELHI: Amid uproar over the lynching of 28-year-old Akbar Khan Alwar, Home Minister Rajnath Singh said that the government will enact a law if needed to curb incidents of lynching.
While stating the government is taking adequate measures, he invoked the 1984 anti-Sikh riots case to attack the Congress. "We are thoughtful about this. This didn't start only recently, the incidents of lynching have been going on for years. I have said this earlier too, the biggest mob lynching is what happened in 1984," Rajnath said.
Reacting to the Alwar case, Rajnath added that a high-level probe has been ordered into the case and assured that action will be taken against those found guilty. He added that the high-level committee chaired by Union Home Secretary Rajiv Gaub will look into cases of mob violence and lynching and suggest steps to be taken to tackle the situation. The committee, he said, has been asked to submit its report in four weeks.
He added that a Group of Ministers headed by himself will consider the recommendations of the panel. The GoM will submit its recommendation to the Prime Minister. Both the committees were set up a week after the Supreme Court asked the central government to enact a law to deal with incidents of lynching and take action on mob violence.
Opposition parties, mainly the Congress and the Trinamool Congress, raised the issue in the Lok Sabha during Zero Hour and demanded that the Centre take action to curb lynching incidents.
A 28-year-old man was lynched on suspicion of being a cow smuggler in Lalawandi village in Rajasthan's Alwar district on Saturday. Sources say that Akbar died because of delay by police in taking him to a hospital. The police personnel allegedly took the cows to a shelter at a distance of 10 km first before taking Akbar to the hospital. Akbar was declared brought dead at the hospital.
The Rajasthan Police also admitted "error of judgement" in handling the case and suspended one and transferred three policemen. It has set up a high-level committee to probe the allegations of delay against the Alwar Police in taking Akbar to the hospital. However, it refuted allegations of "custodial death" and said that as per the primary investigation, the policemen have not been found involved in beating the victim.