How a Nuh judge, 3-year-old daughter, 2 others were rescued by lawyers from the mob

Anjali Jain, her daughter, her gunman and driver were returning from the Shaheed Hasan Khan Mewati Medical College in Nalhar when she got caught in the crossfire

A burning car in Nuh communal riots (Photo: IANS)
A burning car in Nuh communal riots (Photo: IANS)

Ashlin Mathew

It was a close shave with death for additional chief judicial magistrate of Nuh and her three-year-old daughter when the car she was travelling in was set on fire by a mob just as the clashes began in the area on Monday, July 31.

Anjali Jain, her daughter, her gunman and driver were returning from the Shaheed Hasan Khan Mewati Medical College in Nalhar when she got caught in the crossfire. When they reached the old bus stand on the Delhi-Alwar road, all the cars on the road had been stopped. A mob of around 100 persons were setting vehicles on fire and pelting stones. A few stones hit the rear glass of the car they were in. They ran and hid in the Haryana Roadways workshop at the Old bus stand, which was near where their car had been stopped.

That was when a frantic call reached the Nuh District Sessions Judge Sushil Garg and Chief Judicial Magistrate Amit Verma. “It was around lunch time and we were with the judges when the call came. The judges asked us to rescue her from the workshop as our home is quite near the old bus stand,” said Mohd. Mujeeb, senior advocate at the Nuh district court.

Mujeeb along with his sons, who are also lawyers, rushed to the old bus stand, which is a few kms away from the court. He had also informed a few of his family members to reach the old bus stand to ensure her safety. “We were barely able to make it to the old bus stand. Our home in Madina Colony is behind the bus stand. As the mob was in the front, we took the exit at the back to leave the workshop. We reached our home around 2 pm,” said Mujeeb.

The mob in the front had reached the bus stand from Nalhar Mahadev Mandir, also known locally as the pracheen Shiv Mandir, which around 5 kms from the city centre. The Brij Mandal Jalabhishek Yatra, also known as the Shobha Yatra sparked off a communal clash near Khedia Mor in the Muslim-dominated Nuh district. It resulted in the death of five people, including two homeguards, and injured at least 80. It was jointly organised by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad, Bajrang Dal, and Matrishakti Durgavahini.

Rumours were spread that the absconding cow vigilante Monu Manesar, a key accused in Bhiwani killings, would attend the procession. The charred bodies of Junaid and Nasir — both cousins — were found inside the four-wheeler in Haryana’s Bhiwani district on February 16. The Rajasthan police had named 21 people, including Bajrang Dal member Monu Manesar, in the abduction and murder of two Muslim men.

Jain was with Mujeeb’s family until the violence had calmed down around evening. “Around 5 pm, we left our home to head to the court. We were stopped on the road by the mob, but we gave some explanation to be able to drive away. We took her to the court where Garg and Verma were waiting for her to arrive. She was eventually able to reach home. We found out that her car had been burnt by the mob,” said Mujeeb.

A FIR has been filed on the incident based on a complaint filed by Tekchand, who was in the car along with Jain, and a case has been registered against unidentified attackers under Indian Penal Code’s sections 148 (rioting armed with deadly weapons), 149 (unlawful assembly), 307 (attempt to murder), 435 (mischief by fire or explosive substance to cause damage) and the Arms Act.

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