The Supreme Court of India directed the states who had failed to give their compliance report on mob lynching and cow vigilantism to file them in a week’s time. Up till now, only 11 states and seven union territories have submitted their report.
The court said the home secretary of the defaulting state will have to appear in person if the report is not filed within the given time frame and ordered the states to comply with its directions. A plea filed by Congress leader Tehseen Poonawala seeking the commencement of contempt proceedings against Rajasthan officials which included Chief Secretary and the police chief on allegations for violating the court’s verdict was being heard in the court.
At the time of the proceedings, the government of India told the court a Group of Ministers has been set up for consideration of making a law related to mob violence after the verdict.
The court also ordered state governments to designate a senior police officer, not below the rank of Superintendent of Police and assisted by a DSP, as nodal officer in each district to take steps to prevent mob violence and lynching. The two officers will in turn constitute a special task force to collect intelligence on those likely to commit such crimes or be involved in spreading hate speeches, provocative statements and fake news.
Three weeks were given to the states for identifying places where instances of lynching and mob violence have been reported in the last five years. The Secretary, Home Department, of the states concerned, was asked to issue directions to nodal officers to ensure that the officer in-charge of police stations remain vigilant.
Earlier in July, the Supreme Court ordered an explanation from the Rajasthan state government over Rakbar Khan’s lynching in Alwar. Chief Justice Dipak Mishra, who headed the bench asked the Principal Secretary of the Home department of the state government to file an affidavit giving details of the action taken in the lynching case.
NDTV earlier revealed that Rakbar Khan, who was beaten by a mob on suspicion of cow smuggling in Rajasthan’s Alwar was in police custody for over 3 hours before he was taken to the hospital for treatment. The victim was travelling along Akbar Khan, who was beaten to death on the spot by the mob.
Reportedly, the police arranged for transport for the cows, visited the police station which was not far from the hospital and has a cup of tea before getting medical help, by which time he had already died.
The police said that 28-year-old Rakbar Khan died “on way to hospital”. They charged the three arrested from Alwar’s Lallawandi village with murder.