Hundreds of people converged at the Jantar Mantar here to protest against the lynching of a youth in Jharkhand and demanded the resignation of Chief Minister Raghubar Das over the last week’s incident.
Leading the protesters, former JNU student leader Umar Khalid said it was “shameful” that the opposition took a week to speak about the heinous incident and called for a “Nirbhaya-like movement” to curb the lynchings.
“People need to come out on the streets,” Khalid said. “Political patronage is being given to the culprits.”
“We are also angry at the opposition. Where are they today?” he asked.
Tabrez Ansari, 24, was allegedly tied to a pole and thrashed with sticks by a mob at Dhatkidih village in Jharkhand’s Seraikela Kharsawan district last Wednesday on the suspicion of theft. The newly-married man was purportedly seen in a video being forced to chant “Jai Shri Ram” and “Jai Hanuman”. He succumbed to his injuries on Saturday.
The protesters carried placards, shouted slogans against the Modi government and demanded that Das resign as chief minister.
CPI leader Kanhaiya Kumar pointed out that the government had been trying to win “sabka vishwas” (everyone’s trust). “But will it able to earn the trust of those whose children, husband, and brothers have been killed?” he asked.
Bahujan Samaj Party MP Kunwar Danish Ali said the Centre issued several advisories to the Trinamool Congress government in West Bengal over political violence, but he alleged that it failed to do so in the case of Jharkhand.
“A number of incidents have taken place in the past six days. Not a single advisory has been issued by the central government,” Ali said. “Prime Minister (Narendra) Modi may have condemned the incident, (but) his intentions are not good.”
“I am ashamed that I am sharing space in Parliament with those who hail the killers of Mahatma Gandhi,” the BSP MP added.
CPI(M) politburo member Kavita Krishnan cited a number of incidents where people were made to chant “Jai Shri Ram” forcibly. “Fringe groups have entered the Parliament too. When a Muslim MP came to take the oath, these people raised started chanting ‘Jai Shri Ram’,” she said.