NEW DELHI: Rajasthan Police arrested two Muslim men who beheaded a Hindu tailor in broad daylight over a social media post in support of former BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma in Udaipur on Tuesday.
Acting swiftly, the police arrested Mohammed Rafiq and Abdul Jabbar from Rajsamand district within hours of the murder of Kanhaiya Lal in the afternoon.
“Both the accused in the murder of Udaipur man have been arrested from Rajsamand. The investigation in this case will be done under the Case Officer Scheme. Culprits will be punished by the court. I again appeal to all to maintain peace,” Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot said on Twitter.
उदयपुर में युवक की हत्या के दोनों आरोपियों को राजसमंद से गिरफ्तार किया गया है। इस केस में अनुसंधान केस ऑफिसर स्कीम के तहत किया जाएगा एवं त्वरित अनुसंधान सुनिश्चित कर अपराधियों को न्यायालय कड़ी से कड़ी सजा दिलवाई जाएगी। मैं पुन: सभी से शान्ति बनाए रखने की अपील करता हूं।
— Ashok Gehlot (@ashokgehlot51) June 28, 2022
Posing as customers, both accused entered his shop that falls under Dhan Mandi police station in Udaipur city. While one of them slit Lal’s throat with a cleaver, another recorded the gory act and circulated it online.
In the viral video, the accused can be seen brandishing the blood-stained weapon and threatening Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
According to police officials, the victim’s younger son had put up a post in support of the now-suspended BJP leader about 10 days ago. He had since been getting threats and had also filed a police complaint.
Sharma stoked a controversy with a remark against Prophet Mohammed last month. She was later suspended by the party.
Following Lal’s brutal killing, the local market was shut and several vehicles were set ablaze.
The Rajasthan government has suspended Internet services for 24 hours and also deployed additional force in the city.
Meanwhile, Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind has condemned the killing, saying the act goes “against the religion of Islam”. It also called for peace.
CM Gehlot has appealed for peace and ensured strict action against the accused. “I condemn the heinous murder of a youth in Udaipur. Strict action will be taken against all the criminals involved in this incident. I appeal to everyone to maintain peace. Strictest punishment will be given to every person involved in the heinous crime,” he said.
Calling the killing “sad and shameful”, Gehlot said, “There is an atmosphere of tension in the country today. Why don’t the prime minister and (Union home minister) Amit Shah address the nation? The prime minister should address the public and say that such violence won’t be tolerated and he should appeal for peace.”
The killing has evoked a strong reaction from civil society and politicians across the political spectrum.
“I am deeply shocked by the heinous murder in Udaipur. Brutalism in the name of religion cannot be tolerated. Those who spread terror should be punished immediately. We all have to defeat hate together. I appeal to all, please maintain peace and brotherhood,” tweeted former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi.
उदयपुर में हुई जघन्य हत्या से मैं बेहद स्तब्ध हूं।
धर्म के नाम पर बर्बरता बर्दाश्त नहीं की जा सकती। इस हैवानियत से आतंक फैलाने वालों को तुरंत सख़्त सज़ा मिले।
हम सभी को साथ मिलकर नफ़रत को हराना है। मेरी सभी से अपील है, कृपया शांति और भाईचारा बनाए रखें।
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) June 28, 2022
Former Rajasthan CM and BJP stalwart Vasundhara Raje launched an attack on the state government, accusing it of supporting criminal elements.
Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra too condemned the brutal killing and said, “The violent incident of murder in Udaipur is beyond condemnation. The culprits should get the harshest punishment. The designs that spread hatred and violence in the name of religion are fatal for our country and society. Together we have to strengthen efforts for peace and non-violence.”
“The Udaipur incident is very horrifying and gruesome. Such dastardly acts have no place in a civilized society. We condemn this in the strongest terms. The perpetrators of this crime should be punished severely,” said Delhi CM and AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal.
Shupriay Shrinate, the chairperson of Congress Social Media department, called the accused “dreaded terrorists”.
Perpetrators of the horrific Udaipur crime are dreaded terrorists, I am certain that strictest punishment will be meted out by Shri @ashokgehlot51 ji’s govt
Religious fundamentalism of any kind only stokes hatred and must be condemned by one and all. Appeal for peace everywhere
— Supriya Shrinate (@SupriyaShrinate) June 28, 2022
Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav also condemned the incident and demanded the “strictest punishment” for the killers.
उदयपुर में जो उन्मादी हत्या हुई है उसकी जितनी निंदा हो वो कम है। आज समाज के हर एक व्यक्ति को आगे आना होगा और देश के भाईचारे को नफ़रत की भेंट चढ़ने से बचाना होगा।
ऐसे आपराधिक तत्वों को समय रहते सख़्त से सख़्त सज़ा दी जाए जिससे देश के अमन-चैन के दुश्मन इसका लाभ न उठा सकें।
— Akhilesh Yadav (@yadavakhilesh) June 28, 2022