Ummar Khan’s family along with community leaders meets Rajasthan Chief Secretary demanding action against the killers and compensation for the victim’s family
- Family refuses to allow autopsy of the Bharatpur farmer
Raheem Khan & Mumtaz Alam | Caravan Daily
JAIPUR/NEW DELHI — Five days have passed since Rajasthan dairy farmer Ummar Khan, 42, was shot dead allegedly by a brutal gang of gau rakshaks (cow vigilantes) in Alwar district – coincidentally the area where Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje has been campaigning for some days for the upcoming Lok Sabha by-polls. But the police have not arrested the killers, nor has the Raje government announced any enquiry or compensation to the victim’s family. Khan’s body is lying in the morgue of the Jaipur civil hospital as the family has set the arrest of killers and assurance of compensation as preconditions for the autopsy.
Camping in the state capital of Jaipur for the last three days to press for their demands, Ummar’s family met leaders of the Rajasthan Muslim Forum, an umbrella body of Muslim organisations in the state, here on Tuesday morning.
Meanwhile, they got a call to meet the Chief Secretary of the state government with their demands. A delegation of the Muslim body along with Ummar’s family met Chief Secretary Ashok Rajan for half an hour in the afternoon and handed over a memorandum of five demands. The demands included the arrest of all the accused, suspension of concerned police officials and a compensation of Rs 50 lakhs.
The delegation included Ummar’s uncle Abdur Razzaq, brother Khurshid, Jamaat-e-Islami Rajasthan secretary Mohammad Nazimuddin, Forum For Democracy and Communal Amity Rajasthan president Sawai Singh, Jamiat Ulama-I-Hind Rajasthan vice president Hafiz Manzoor, Popular Front of India Rajasthan president Rizwan, SDPI Rajasthan president Aasif and former Congress MLA Zahida Khan.
Talking to Caravan Daily over the phone, JIH secretary Mohammad Nazimuddin, who was part of the delegation, said: “We met the Chief Secretary for half an hour and submitted our memorandum. He promised us and the family that he would call back by 6 PM after talking to the Chief Minister.”
While the officer did not revert, some policemen approached the family asking them to allow post-mortem of Ummar’s body, otherwise they would be booked (for obstructing police work).
In the wake of the new development, the leaders of the Rajasthan Muslim Forum and Ummar’s family again sat in the evening and decided to hit streets to press for their demands.
At the meeting, an 11-member front by the name of Sanyukt Sangharsh Morcha was formed with Sawai Singh, Rajasthan president of FDCA, as its convener. Other members of the Morcha include Mohammad Nazimuddin, Sumitra Chopra and former Congress MLA Zahida Khan.
In its first meeting, the Morcha decided to take out a protest march in the city on Wednesday, November 15. The march will proceed from Muslim Musafir Khana at 2 PM towards the office of Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje. People from Mewat region are expected to attend the demonstration in big numbers.
“After meeting the Chief Secretary, we find that the attitude of the government and administration is disappointing. The government is trying to hush up the matter,” said Dr. Iqbal Siddiqui.
Ummar was shot dead on Friday morning but the incident came to light only on Sunday and since then, his family has been demanding arrest of the attackers and monetary compensation as Ummar is survived by pregnant wife, eight children and elderly parents. His body was sent to Jaipur for autopsy on Sunday evening.
Murder Most Foul
The Bharatpur-native Ummar and two of his comrades from the same town Tahir and Jabir were returning home from Ramgarh with a few cows when their pick-up vehicle was waylaid in Alwar and they were attacked with firearms.
While Ummar died on the spot, Tahir and Jabir managed to flee with bullet wounds. The attackers later took Ummar’s body and put it on a railway track, 15 kms from the site of the attack. They did so to destroy the evidence of the murder and to show his death as an accident. Though Ummar’s body was crushed, the parts wherein bullets had pierced remained intact. Tahir and Jabir also later told Ummar’s family about the attack.
“Ummar has three daughters and five girls. He was the only bread-earner in the family. The attackers brutally killed him and crushed his face to hide his identity. We want justice,” Mohammad Ilyas, Ummar’s uncle said.
Ummar’s is the second killing in Alwar district in the last seven months. On 1st April 2017, Haryana dairy farmer Pehlu Khan was lynched by a gang of Gau Rakshaks here when he and his two sons were transporting cows and calves after purchasing them from a government-run cattle market in Jaipur. The sons survived the brutal assault.
The by-poll for Alwar and Ajmer Lok Sabha seats are likely to be held in coming December and Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje has already started campaigning. Some see the spate in violence in the name of cow as a deliberate move to deflect people’s attention from the real issues. Both the seats were won by BJP in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.
“For the sake of vote politics, this confrontation is being engineered between the majority and minority so that people do not talk about the BJP’s previous poll promises and development in the upcoming election in Alwar,” said Sawai Singh.