Nashik horror: Cow vigilantes lynch Thane man suspected of cattle-smuggling

The alleged lynching that took place last week came to light after the police recovered the body of the victim, identified as Lukman Sulaiman Ansari

Cows (photo: Getty Images)
Cows (photo: Getty Images)
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IANS

In a shocking incident, at least six cow vigilantes have been arrested by the Igatpuri Police for allegedly lynching a Thane man to death and injuring another, on suspicion of cattle smuggling, on Wednesday.

The alleged lynching that took place last week came to light after the police recovered the body of the victim, identified as Lukman Sulaiman Ansari (25) of Padgha in Thane district, on Saturday (June 10).

Ansari's body was found dumped in a 150-metre deep gorge in the Ghatandevi area. The police launched a probe immediately, Nashik (Rural) Superintendent of Police, Shahaji Umap, told mediapersons.

It was on Thursday (June 8) when Ansari along with his friends Atiq Paddi and Aqueel Gavandi purchased a bullock, two cows and a calf for around Rs 18,000 from a farmer-woman in Shahapur and were transporting the same in an LMV tempo to Padgha.


Enroute, they were intercepted by over 15 so-called cow-vigilantes, who came in three cars and motorcycles, near Shahapur. They attempted to extort money from Ansari and his friends, but when refused, they took over the tempo, 'rescued' the four bovines and drove the vehicle to Ghatandevi.

They stopped the tempo at an isolated spot near the hilly areas and started brutally assaulting the trio with sticks and iron rods.

While Paddi and Gavandi managed to escape, Ansari bore the brunt of the attack. His autopsy revealed death due to severe head injuries, said the investigators.

The accused, who are said to be members of the Rashtriya Bajrang Dal, claimed that Ansari fell into a gorge and died, but the police are probing the matter.

"After recording the complaint of the injured duo, the police launched a manhunt and arrested six accused persons, who have been remanded to police custody for seven days," Senior Inspector at Igatpuri police station, Vasant Pathwe, told IANS.

The accused have been identified as Chetan Sonawane, Pradeep Adhole, Bhaskar Bhagat, Shekhar Gaikwad, Vijay Bhagde and Rupesh Joshi. The police are on the lookout for others involved in the attack.

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