State police give clean chit to five men accused of killing 55-year-old Pehlu Khan in Rajasthan in April
Even as the Rajasthan police Thursday closed investigations against six people accused of lynching 55-year-old Pehlu Khan in April, his son Arif said he would not rest until justice is done in his father’s murder case.
“We will take this case to its logical end. I will not sit at home till we get justice, even if I have to die in the process,” said Arif.
The CB-CID, which took over the investigation from the Alwar police in July, recently sent a report to the latter recommending the names of the six accused — who had been named by Pehlu in his dying declaration — be dropped from the case as they were found “not guilty” after an investigation.
Speaking to ThePrint on the phone from his village Jaisinghpur in Haryana’s Nuh, Arif said he will now file a writ petition in the high court. Writ petitions are filed when one claims that his/her fundamental rights have been violated by the state.
“This seems like a conspiracy; it is grave injustice. But we will not spare those who attacked us and our father. We will go all the way up to the Supreme Court. For now, we are filing a writ petition in the high court. I will ensure they get 20 years in prison, will not sit at home peacefully until then,” Arif said,adding that they were yet to get any compensation from the government.
On 1 April, Pehlu was killed in an attack by suspected cow vigilantes on National Highway 8 in Rajasthan’s Alwar district while transporting cattle he had bought in Jaipur. His sons Irshad and Arif were with him when their vehicle was stopped on and they were thrashed. While Irshad and Arif survived, Pehlu died two days later in a private hospital in Behror.
Pehlu’s uncle Hussain Khan claims no government authority has yet come to speak to them. “We have been wronged. The high court is our next stop. Forget about someone senior from the authorities, even a local constable from the nearby police chowki hasn’t visited us since April,” Hussain said over the phone.
While Pehlu’s family insisted that the cattle were being transported legally and for dairy farming, police had alleged they were “smuggled” since the cattle were being taken from one state to another, without permit.
In June, when ThePrint visited Pehlu’s village, the spot in Behror where the alleged lynching took place, as well as Alwar to meet the authorities, Rahul Prakash, superintendent of police, Alwar district, had said the family will “100 per cent get justice”.
The SP could not be reached for comments Thursday despite repeated attempts.
There were 15 people who had been named in the FIR, of which five were arrested, and two detained since they are minors. The rest are “absconding”. Pehlu’s family, however, had claimed that the six men directly responsible for the lynching were not among those arrested.