Jharkhand: A 27-year-old Muslim man was beaten to death by a group of men in Sirka village of Ranchi, in Jharkhand, media reports quoting police officials said.

The deceased, according to a report by Clarion India, Mubarak Khan, a driver by profession, was beaten to death by a group of men on the intervening night of Saturday and Sunday.

Media reports citing police say he was caught while stealing. But his relatives say it’s a premeditated murder as he was called from home and killed.

Quoting police, the report said that they have registered a case of murder in Angara police station and have opened the investigation. “We have filed an FIR under section 302 and are working on it,” Clarion India quoted  Naushad Alam, Superintendent of Police, Ranchi Rural, as saying. “We have to also maintain law and order. The process has started and we have sent the body for post mortem.”

The report said that police have named at least 17 men as accused in the case while trying to establish the identities of several others.

Initial media reports citing police officials said that Mubarak was caught trying to steal the battery and tyres of a motorcycle. The villagers thrashed him to death on the spot.

The report quoting the police officer further said that Mubarak and two of his associates had attempted to remove the tyre and battery of a bike. “When they were found, they tried to run away but Mubarak was caught and his feet and arms were tied and he was beaten which caused his death on the spot,” the police officer was quoted as saying. “We will investigate the matter and hear both sides before reaching any conclusion.”

On the other hand, the relatives and neighbours of Mubarak have refuted such reports saying that it was a “pre-planned murder” as he was called to the spot and then beaten to death, the report said.

“They (the alleged murderers) called him at around 11 in the night while he was at his home making an omelette for dinner,” the report quoted one of the neighbours Zakir Khan, as having said. “He went there quickly but they tied him to a pole and beat him until he passed away.”

Zakir, according to the report, questioned the stealing allegations claiming that the accused planted a battery and a jack of a four-wheeler at the spot of the murder. “Why would a thief use a four-wheeler jack for a two-wheeler.”

Zakir said that Mubarak’s brother told him that a few days ago there was a quarrel between Mubarak and accused men “who threatened to kill him.” A relative of Mubarak also claimed that he was given a life threat a week ago. “We want action in the case otherwise we can take any step,” he was quoted as saying.

The murder has triggered anger among the Muslim community of the area who demand justice.

A video of a group of Muslim women has gone viral on social media where one of them is saying they don’t want revenge but justice. “People from their (accused) village work here. We could have held them hostage but Muslims do not do such acts. We do not want a life for a life. We want justice,” the women can be heard saying in the video.

 

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