Self-proclaimed volunteers creating atmosphere of fear: NHRC on cow vigilantes

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Friday came down heavily on cow vigilantes, saying “self-proclaimed volunteers” are creating an atmosphere of fear by taking law in to their hands.

It said the State has a responsibility to remain vigilant to prevent such activities and they should be dealt with strictly.

The NHRC’s remarks came as it sought a report from Rajasthan over the murder of a man by suspected cow vigilantes in Alwar and asked the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to explain the measures taken to deal with such incidents.


“The Commission has observed that the contents of the media reports are painful. This is a serious issue of violation of human rights of the victims. Self-proclaimed volunteers creating an atmosphere of fear in society by taking law in their hands are required to be dealt with strictly as per law,” it said.

The NHRC said this incident is “not the first of its kind”, which has come to its notice. Earlier, it said in a similar incident, four Dalit boys, possessing beef, were severely beaten up and dragged in Gujarat in July 2016.

It said it has issued a notice to the Chief Secretary of Rajasthan asking for a detailed report in the matter along with action taken against the culprits.

“A notice has also been issued to the Union Home Secretary, calling for a response as to what steps have been taken or proposed to be taken by the Centre to deal with such incidents in the country. The response is expected within four weeks,” an NHRC spokesperson said.

The NHRC said a group of “so-called” cow vigilantes attacked some persons dubbing them as cattle smugglers, though they were dairy farmers carrying cows, legally purchased under a receipt and stamp of Jaipur Municipal Corporation.

The assault resulted in the death of a person. However, the Rajasthan police have registered an FIR against the victims of assault for illegally transporting cattle for slaughter, it said quoting media reports.

“Reportedly, the family members of the deceased, a dairy farmer, stated that the victims showed the attackers the receipt of legally purchased cows but they continued to thrash them. They snatched their wallets and cash of about Rupees one lakh as well as cell phones,” the NHRC said.

(An edited version appeared in Deccan Herald on Apr 8, 2017)


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