July 29, 2020
The two youngsters from Malegaon were mercilessly pulled out of their truck and beaten by villagers in one of the worst-hit districts in the state in the ongoing Covid-19 crisis
MUMBAI — Two Muslim youngsters from Malegaon were targeted by a mob of about 200 people in a village in Maharashtra’s Jalgaon district, about 150 km from their place, on suspicion that they were stealing cattle.
Wasim Khan, 28, and Shaikh Khalim, 26, were passing by Parola taluka near Jalgaon in the early hours last week when some of the villagers stopped and attacked them. They were tied to a tree and were being beaten mercilessly.
“We rushed a team and immediately dispersed the mob,” Saurabh Agarwal, additional SP, Jalgaon, told Clarion India on Wednesday. Nearly a score of the miscreants were arrested and have been remanded to judicial custody.
The two men from Malegaon in the neighbouring district of Nashik were stunned by the attempt to lynch them and were in no position to file a complaint. The police then filed a suo motu case against the villagers and rushed the two to hospital.
“They were discharged from the hospital,” said Agarwal. “We are continuing with the probe.” Some of the arrested persons claimed that the two men were out to steal cattle.
Jalgaon has been one of the worst-hit districts in Maharashtra after Mumbai, Pune and Thane in the ongoing Covid-19 crisis. Three towns in the district – Jalgaon, Amalner and Bhusawal – were under the seven-day lockdown earlier.
On Sunday, a central government team led by Kunal Kumar, joint secretary, ministry of housing and urban development, visited the city and some parts of the district.
Kumar told the district administration to adopt the Dharavi (Mumbai’s largest slum colony) pattern of maintaining a record of comorbid patients in every containment zone.
According to district collector Abhijit Raut, the officials also asked the administration to conduct health surveys of comorbid patients on a regular basis to ensure early measures could be taken.
Earlier this month, the situation in Jalgaon had turned alarming with a sharp increase in Covid-19 cases and deaths.
The district administration has now decided to launch an oxygen support system at the gram panchayat level to provide immediate relief to people suffering from breathlessness in the villages, who otherwise have to wait for a long time for an ambulance to take them to a hospital.