Controversial BJP leader Yogi Adityanath’s elevation as the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh has risen hopes for those accused in lynching of Muhammad Akhlaq in Dadri. Family of those arrested in for killing Akhlaq, on suspicion of possessing beef, believe the new CM will “understand their plight” and the men would be able to walk free soon.
Ever since Adityanath took oath, it has been a festive mood in Bishara, as members of the Gau Raksha Hindu Dal (Save cow Hindu protection force) and other saffron outfits joined to celebrate the ‘cow protector CM.’
It is for the first time in the past year-and-a-half that we felt that our plight would be felt and understood by those in power. Yogiji [Adityanath] has supported Hindus, and he has been a constant source of support, always present in the background, when this incident happenedOm Kumar, Bishahra resident
His sons, Saurav and Gaurav, were arrested on charges of killing Akhlaq. Gaurav, a minor, is out on bail. All the murder accused, except one, belong to the dominant Thakur community.
“Family members of Akhlaq’s murder accused, had met Adityanath twice in Delhi after the incident and he had promised to extend all possible support to them,” the head of Gau Raksha Hindu Dal, Ved Nagar, was quoted by The Hindu.
“It is a matter of pride that a cow protector like Yogiji has become the Chief Minister. Now we expect justice to be done,” Nagar added.
The gaurakshaks believe that the accused in the Akhlaq murder case would soon get bail. The villagers now see a “ray of hope” because Adityanath had stood with the accused, Nagar said.
Adityanath, who belongs to the Thakur community, had demanded that the accused be released and Akhlaq’s kin be arrested on charges of cow slaughter. He had also said that the compensation given to them be withdrawn. The outfit established by Adityanath, Hindu Yuva Vahini, had offered guns to “harassed” Hindus of Bishahra, The Hindu reported.
On 28 September 2015, members of cow vigilante group attacked 52-year-old Mohammed Ikhlaq with sticks and bricks and beaten him to death. His son, 22-year-old Danish seriously injured. Fifteen of the 18 accused in the lynching case are in jail. Two of them are out on bail as they were minors. One of the accused died in judicial custody.