Dissent

Junaid Khan Murder: Delhi Government Employee Among Four Arrested

A participant shows a placard during the “Not in My Name” protest in Delhi. Credit: PTI

New Delhi: Less than a week after the murder of 15-year-old Junaid Khan on a train to Mathura, the Haryana railway police on Wednesday arrested four people, including a Delhi government employee.

“We have arrested four more persons, including three youths, aged between 24 and 30 years and a 50-year-old man,” Kamaldeep Goel, superintendent of police, government railway police, Faridabad, told PTI. Goel further told the Hindustan Times, “We have made the arrest but we cannot reveal their names at this stage. Further investigation is on.”

The police had earlier arrested a 35-year-old man named Ramesh, who claimed to have been drunk at the time and instigated to attack the brothers.

During police questioning, the 50-year-old man said that the man who had stabbed Junaid and his brothers Hashim and Shaqir was not part of their group, but one of the passengers. He said he had boarded the train at Okhla and the three brothers were playing ludo on the train seat, and moved when he asked them to. However, when three others got on to the train at Bata, the brothers had refused to move.

“He said Junaid and his brothers refused to move the ludo board and the fight for the seat began. He confessed that the men had a scuffle and Junaid and his brothers were thrashed. He, however, said that the man who stabbed them was unknown to them,” a police officer told HT.

The 50-year old who has been arrested works with the Delhi Jal Board, reported HT. All four men are from Khambi village near Palwal in Haryana.

Four days after the incident, the police accessed CCTV footage from cameras near Asaoti village and began raids. They found out that the attackers were from Asaoti village, but have not yet found the man who stabbed the brothers.

Junaid’s murder as well as other instances of lynching on suspicion of possession of beef that have taken place in the last year, sparked civilian protests across the country yesterday. Social activists, journalists, artistes, singers, and others came out in large numbers in 10 cities simultaneously holding placards with messages like “The lynching of India,” and “Modi, face of Indian terrorism,” apart from the protest slogan “Not in my name”.

Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar condemned the attacks on Tuesday. Prasad told the Indian Express that “It is completely wrong. It should never have happened. I condemn the incident. The chief minister has said the state will do everything to nab the culprits. Some people have been arrested.”