The Restrained Bishara: Have we forgotten Dadhri Lynching?
More than a year passed in silent mourning and choked screams, but none seems to be bothered, leave alone conjuring about the infamous Bisahara village incident better recognized by the ‘Dadhri issue’ or ‘Dadhri lynching case’. After customized experiences for more than 365 days, On 13th September 2015 on the eve of Eid-ul-Adha, trunk headed media cohorts documented the uneased calm and frozen silence which had engulfed Bisahara village, where no Azaan (Muslims call for prayer) or no animal sacrifice took place. People can’t fathom the usefulness of such documentaries other than calling them a barrage of media fakery, when authorities don’t give credence to them. Is it that government classifies such documentaries as gaffe or deliberately goofed and take the matter on a ‘yearly basis’? I wonder!
The incident which sent chilling shockwaves down the spine in Muslim community took place on 28 September , 2015 on the occasion of Eid-ul-Azha. Free from their prayers and wishes, Muslims were eagerly waiting with exquisitely brewed feelings to offer their usual sacrificial. Muslims perform this obligation just to please and for the sake of their lord, when Mohammad Akhlaq, was malevolently manhandled and brutally lynched to death in Dadhri, Uttar Pradesh. Nefariously, it was a communal push to shove and ranged bells in entire Muslim community.
If media reports are to be believed, around 10:30 pm, an announcement was aired that Akhlaq and his family had been consuming and storing ‘beef’ and same seems to have not gone down well with the sentiments of Hindu community, because they have an abject apathy for beef. After the cramping hours of celebrations and greetings, Akhlaq and his son Danish were by now asleep. With heavy warnings and noise of a mob assumed of 100 or so, they woke up only to a death invitation, rather devils in the clothes of so called nationalists. These morons bruised Akhlaq badly and dragged him out of his house. Helplessly, his family was pleading and begging for his life but in a slugfest of 6 v/s 100 for life, its obvious that latter will overpower and hence Akhlaq was turned to speed news and thrown as a piece to prime-time gladiators in Delhi.
Investigative journalists have carried many stories, articles, reports, ‘DNA’ reports and documentaries, debates and ‘Forensic reports’ have also taken place, which proved that meat found in Akhlaq’s fridge was not of beef. It concerned me deeply, it was an appalling scenario to witness. Every other news story was contradictory to its first version. Like the report that claimed the meat being meat, was ‘beef’ after another report!
‘The Quint’ report further says “They barged into Akhlaq’s home and opened Akhlaq’s room and it took these goons merely 5-10 minutes to kill him. All this happened before the mob even reached the house. I desperately wanted to help him but I was alone. They even threatened to kill me if I intervened. It was a conspiracy and a planned murder”
-Ramesh, Eyewitness (name changed)
This report very well contradicts the earlier report. One must not cast aspersions but should invariably see through the facts and in this case the fact that even before the mob, there were few people who cracked in Akhlaqs’ house. Hinting towards the rumors of the murder out of ‘beef-sentiments’ to be a cover up for some personal acrimony, projecting and giving it a shape of communal mishap.
Given harmoniously vivid village history of bishara, it is futile to keep oneself out of the investigative instinct! I stand on a soap box here! A case that gives varying result every time, is a sign for further interrogation and intervention.
Some say, this issue holds no debate, knows no further interrogation or discussion as it could be seen as a reprisal of ‘beef-consumption’. But does beef ban include a death penalty too? I ask! Or was Akhlaq’s murder actually a communal disposal or a ‘personal’ difference between the two parties (Akhlaq and family and the perpetrators) as told by Ramesh, the eye witness to The Quint?
According to a report in THE Hindu, October 5, 2015 (Following the arrest of the Dadhri accused Vishal, son of Sanjay Rana, local BJP leader for ‘stirring the mob’) Mr. Som, MLA from Sardhana constituency remarked “People won’t break the law but we will give a reply to the one-sided action of the government. This government is anyway for very few days now. They are destroying themselves.” He secured the families and crowd with his assurance that he will try to get the accused out on bail. Interestingly enough, while the media was not allowed to enter the village, Mr. Som and Hindu Raksha Dal leader Bhupendra Tomar were allowed to visit the village. (As reported by THE HINDU)
After such reports of maxim and rumors that did the round, what pricked me was the existence of a complete libel and lampoon agendas in every campus, city and state!
The question we stand bill boarded with is what now and what next? Will we really remember this ‘Akhlaq Issue’ on next Eid, while sacrificial comes to our mind? Will there be any hash tags or twitterati storm and web revolutions or will this case like many other cases be suppressed with the elections and with different parties and different agendas?
Another important atrocity of recent times is the domination of ‘gau rakshaks’ who have been confined with divine rights of kings and to me it seems that under the guise to ‘save’ cow they are very much ‘extirpating’ India to the hands of disunity and varied fear! Who gives them the right to ‘murder’ people over accusation or rumors of consumption, storage or beef trade? Or does anyone? I ask! The public asks!
Wandering down the street, our conscious and subconscious is rejig and surrounded by an environment of fear, jingoism, populism and we stand in a situation where we are encouraging chance encounters, where the accused of crimes like rape and murder walks free on bail but a mere beef consumption rumor is enough to murder a person. Liberty of speech is not same as liberty of conduct as JS Mill writes, and he argues that conduct is the first amendment of democracies and I do not stand with or against beef ban, but the only expression I intend to voice through this article is that penalties to such crimes need to be looked over; also, latitude should be given to consideration of such articles, if we are to really live in a democratic country with freedom of speech and expression.
Self-introspection is a must for every community, every society and every soul! Don’t succumb to evil impulses of the rulers.
*Author is a student at Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh. Her interest lies in student activism and journalism. She uses Pen name “ Quest”.
Disclaimer: Views expressed are exclusively personal and do not necessarily reflect the position of Oracle Opinions.