At Palghar in Maharashtra, a violent mob brutally hacked to death three people out of which two were Sadhus and one was their driver. The maniac mob consisted of around 110 people including juveniles, killed them in the name of child thieves.
While the rumours of child gang thieves have been doing the rounds in Palghar for some time, the police officials believe that the ferocity with which the mob carried out the attack against the 2 sadhus and their driver indicates that the mob was bent on killing them.
The incident reportedly took place on Thursday between 9.30 and 10 PM amidst the nationwide lockdown. Their bodies have been sent for postmortem to a government hospital in Palghar. The victims were travelling from Mumbai when their car was stopped on the Dhabadi-Khanvel road near village Gadchinchale by local residents. They were attacked with stones and other sharp objects (source).
It has now emerged that the two sadhus, identified as Chikane Maharaj Kalpavrikshgiri (70) and Sushil Giri Maharaj (35) belonged to the revered, Varanasi-based Shri Panch Dashnam Juna Akhara. The ‘Juna Akhara’, as it is more commonly known, is considered by many to be the largest and oldest order of sadhus in India. The third victim has been identified as Nilesh Telgane (35), who was a driver. (source)
The incident remained largely out of the public glare until 19 April when videos of the lynching surfaced on the social media. The videos show 70 year old sadhu being escorted by a cop out of a building. A crowd wielding sticks is waiting outside. As he comes out, looking scared and bleeding on the head, the crowd takes him away and begins to beat him mercilessly. The video shows no intervention by the cop.
There are two important questions rising here. One, why this incident was hidden for three days? Two, why police didn’t intervene and save them? In a country like India where lynching of minority grabs every single eyeball and is played repeatedly in every media house why a brutal killing of majority community doesn’t find place in today’s newspapers even after being widely circulated on social media?
The villagers including nine juveniles have been arrested, but why not action against police too as they were also a part of this crime by being mute spectators and being complete failures in doing their job. Palghar has been a hub of proselytization and conversion activities raising anti Hindu sentiments and that explains why a particular vehicle was targeted by the mob.