Cow slaugh­ter now fo­cus of probe, says Op­po­si­tion

Hindustan Times (Lucknow) - - Uttarpradesh - HT Cor­re­spon­dents let­[email protected]­dus­tan­times.com

LUCKNOW : The state­ments of UP po­lice of­fi­cials as­so­ci­ated with the Bu­land­shahr probe sug­gested that they were now fo­cus­ing more on in­ves­ti­gat­ing cow slaugh­ter than iden­ti­fy­ing those in­volved in in­sti­gat­ing the mob vi­o­lence that claimed the life of a po­lice in­spec­tor and a 21-yearold youth, op­po­si­tion par­ties have said. Al­though the po­lice have ar­rested nine peo­ple in con­nec­tion with the vi­o­lence, all the key ac­cused are still on the run.

The po­lice also ar­rested eight peo­ple in con­nec­tion with al­leged cow slaugh­ter and re­cov­ery of car­cass in the same dis­trict.

The Op­po­si­tion said the ap­par­ent shift in fo­cus came about even as the state top au­thor­i­ties as­sured the fam­ily of po­lice in­spec­tor Su­bodh Ku­mar Singh that those guilty of killing him would not be spared.

Se­nior Congress leader and Ra­jya Sabha mem­ber Pramod Te­wari said the pri­mary fo­cus of the probe should be on the vi­o­lence that led to the two killings, rather than on cow slaugh­ter.

He said cow slaugh­ter should also be probed, but it was a con­tin­u­ous process and “the mat­ter could be kept sec­ondary at this point of time”.

Sa­ma­jwadi Party spokesper­son Ab­dul Hafiz Gandhi said the state gov­ern­ment’s pri­or­ity seemed to be fur­ther­ing the rul­ing party’s po­lar­is­ing agenda to reap po­lit­i­cal div­i­dends in 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

He said it was quite un­for­tu­nate that po­lice were not able to give jus­tice to the fam­ily of the po­lice in­spec­tor, who sac­ri­ficed his life to up­hold the rule of law. He said the state had plunged into ‘maha jun­gle raj’ (anar­chy, where right-wing hooli­gans reign supreme.

UP BJP spokesman Har­ish Chan­dra Sri­vas­tava said the in­ci­dent was a con­spir­acy aimed at dis­cred­it­ing the state gov­ern­ment and it (the con­spir­acy) needed to be un­rav­elled. He said all the as­pects of the case were be­ing probed.

He said the for­ma­tion of SIT, rush­ing ADG in­tel­li­gence, and the chief minister him­self over­see­ing the en­tire is­sue were proof of the state gov­ern­ment’s com­mit­ment to en­sur­ing the rule of law.

Meerut in­spec­tor gen­eral (IG) of po­lice Ram Ku­mar has al­ready said finding out “who was be­hind cow slaugh­ter... the cow con­spir­acy” was a “big­ger ques­tion”. Ram Ku­mar, who heads a sev­en­mem­ber spe­cial in­ves­ti­ga­tion team (SIT) formed to probe the Bu­land­shahr vi­o­lence, made the re­mark on Thurs­day, talk­ing to jour­nal­ists about the is­sue.

In­spec­tor gen­eral (IG) of po­lice, crime, SK Bha­gat shared data of po­lice ac­tion on cow slaugh­ter preven­tion while briefing me­dia in Lucknow on Thurs­day. He reeled out the statis­tics when ques­tioned about up­dates in Bu­land­shahr vi­o­lence probe. Di­rec­tor gen­eral of po­lice (DGP) OP Singh, has also hinted at a “larger con­spir­acy” be­hind Mon­day’s vi­o­lence in Bu­land­shahr. He said on Tues­day, “These are ma­jor ques­tions that how did the cat­tle car­cass reach there?”

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