A video of Mohammed Haroon Kasni being slapped and heckled outside a Hisar mosque, allegedly by Bajrang Dal members, has gone viral.
New Delhi: On Tuesday, a group of people in Hisar, Haryana who had gathered for a Bajrang Dal-organised protest against the recent Amarnath yatra attack heckled and assaulted a Muslim man outside a local mosque. Some reports have said the man, 30-year-old Mohammed Haroon Kasni, was the imam of the mosque, though he has said he was only there to pray. After a video of the incident went viral on the internet, the main accused was arrested by the police on Wednesday, The Hindu reported.
In the video, the protestors are seen as forcing Kasni to say ‘vande mataram‘ and ‘Bharat mata ki jai‘ – when he does not comply and tries to talk to them, he is slapped.
“We won’t allow Muslims to live in Haryana like this, we will throw them all out,” one of the protestors told ABP News. “If we see even one Muslim here, we will burn them alive. How can they live in India and not say ‘Bharat mata ki jai’?”
“Wherever there are Muslims in majority in this country, not a single Hindu is safe,” said another protestor. “But where there are majority Hindus in this country, there is no threat to any Muslim.” Ironically, this was after the group he was a part of had assaulted Kasni.
Speaking to the Indian Express, Kasni has said he was trying to tell the group that he is also against terrorists, but nobody listened. “I kept explaining that I am also against the terrorists and traitors of the country. But they did not listen and slapped me after dragging me out of the mosque where I was performing namaz,” he said. He added that this was his first time in Hisar – he had come from Mirjapur Pol village in UP’s Sahranpur district. “They targeted me because it was easy for them to identify that I am a Muslim because of my beard and cap. Others hid in different corners of the mosque. They would have killed me had the police not arrived,” he said.
“Anil was the person who slapped Mohammad Haroon, a mango trader, outside the mosque yesterday… he has been arrested,” deputy superintendent of police (law and order), Hisar, Jitender Singh, told The Hindu.
“Around 100-125 unidentified people were protesting outside the mosque. A few members of the mob became agitated and starting kicking the door of the mosque. Hearing the commotion, Mr. Haroon came out and he was then manhandled and slapped by members of the mob, according to a complaint filed by the mosque’s caretaker Abid Hussain,” Singh added. He refused to comment on whether the attackers were members of the Bajrang Dal.
“Anil, who is around 30, was also part of the demonstration. During interrogation, he confessed to having slapped Haroon when he did not say Bharat Mata Ki Jai. Anil also told us that he participated in dharnas by shopkeepers of the auto market. We have to verify whether he is a member of the Bajrang Dal,” Hisar SP Manish Choudhary told Indian Express.