There are 12 Bas such as Kharka Bas, Rewada Bas, Khairati Bas, Bada Bas, Tailiya Bas, Kila Mari and Haji Bas in Raghunathgadh Gram Panchayat of Naugaon PS Area of the District Alwar. There is Bas of Rewada out of these 12 Bas settled in the lap of Aravalli Mountain, which is the last village of Raghunath Gram Panchayat. Then, forest and mountain ranges of Aravalli begin. Aravalli Mountain Ranges divide Rajasthan and Haryana here. This village lies in the part of the Rajasthan State but Mewat Culture of Haryana is an integral part here. The general public regards it as a part of Mewat Region unofficially. Raghunath Gram Panchayat shot in headlines suddenly on 15-16 September, 2016. News began to broadcast in news channels that the remains of 36 cows have been found in the forests of Rewada Bas. This news item became the headline of the newspapers on 16th September. After hearing and reading this news, our fact finding team reached Rewada Bas.
There are sixty – seventy households in Rewada Bas. When this team reached Rewada Bas, there was the atmosphere of silence. We could see the scene of fear and sadness on the faces of the people. There are kachcha – pakka small houses. There tube, well and boring as source of drinking water. There is one primary school of two rooms, in which there are two teachers. The standard of education is low. There is not a single Govt. employee in Rewada Bas. The main sources of livelihood are agriculture, livestock and labor. There are such persons also who are engaged in driving profession in the village. When the residents of Rewada Bas came to know that the Inquiry Team has reached, the persons running from here and there began to come to the Inquiry Team. When they began to narrate atrocities inflicted upon them, we felt that we are not the citizens of any Democratic Country still now. We felt hearing their story that just contrary to the provisions of law of India is happening. Law provides that even single innocent person should not be punished even if one hundred guilty persons get acquitted, but just contrary to it, the entire village was subjected to cruelty to save one – two guilty persons. It seems after observing atrocities inflicted upon the residents of the village that there is nothing namely Government – Administration in India. India is not under any constitution or law. It is running by the orders of some persons and parties.
There are different festivals of different religions in our country. We deliberate our festivals as per our faith and customs. Eid and Bakraeid are two major festivals in Islam, on which days there are gazetted holidays by the Government of India. The Muslims eagerly wait for these festivals. New clothes, sewai and meat are the features of these festivals. There was the happiness of this Bakraeid also in Rewada Bas. The people were congratulating each other. The children were making merry on the occasion of Eid. There was hustle and bustle whole day in the village. There was gaiety and merriment another day also. Sisters and daughters had come to meet their family members. The relatives also were participating in this happiness. However, on this very date 14th September, 2016, the raid was made in many nearby villages in the name of the search for the persons who butchered cows and 12 persons were arrested on allegation of slaughtering cows and they were sent in police remand until 19th September, who are now in jail. The persons who were arrested are Nura @ Ner Muhammad (Former Sarpanch) son of Bhondu r/o Kharka Bas, Shaukat son of Ayub, Hakimuddin son of Naseeb, Khursheed son of Mamrez and Irfan son of Naseem all residents of Khairati Bas, Javed son of Yaqub and Rashid son of Yaqub residents of Bada Bas, Fakhruddin son of Mamman resident of Tailiya Bas, Aameen son of Fajru resident of Raghunathgadh, Sajid son of Majeed, Shital Ka Bas, Altaf son of Azad and Shaukeen son of Ilyas resident of Pat Khori Haryana. The villagers say that the police took away Nura @ Ner Muhammad (60 years) on 15th date at 4.00 am from his house. Sajid (24 years) had come to take his wife. The handicapped boy 16 years of age hailing from Bada Bas also is included in the arrested persons. When some persons had come from other places to congratulate on the occasion of Bakraeid, the police arrested them also while sleeping in the night.
The police conducted raid on 15th December along with 15 officers and policemen in leadership of QRT Deputy Chairman Parmal Singh Gurjar on 15th September in Rewada Bas. The villagers told that MLA Gyandev Ahuja (It is the same MLA, who had counted condom and big and small bones during JNU Movement) also was with the policemen. It gets also proved from the clarification made by MLA Gyandev Ahuja that the activists of Shiv Sena and Hindu Organization had reached the village. The persons told that the persons came with Ahuja committed sabotage. They further told that the persons came with Gyandev Ahuja were putting gamchha in their neck. Some persons had rod, stick and arms also in their hands. These persons with the policemen committed sabotage and robbery entering houses. The women of the village narrated that the persons who had tied yellow gamchha were asking to set the houses of the villagers on fire and nobody should be saved.
The Inquiry Team found that the sabotage has been committed in all houses of Rewada Bas. Whatever articles were in houses have been damaged, to the extent that doors, windows and cots of the houses have been broken and they have cut the ropes of those cots which they were unable to break. The trunks for keeping grains have been damaged by axe or pointed objects. Fridge, fans, almirah and TVs have been broken up. Utensils of eating and drinking have been broken. Even the fodder machines have been damaged. Boring wells have been broken up and bricks and stones have been filled up in them. Grains have been mixed up. The articles of those households where new marriages have taken place have been dispersed more and the search has been made there. Violence has been committed for about 4 hours in the village. Many persons told that jewelries and cash kept in their houses were robbed. The attackers took away five two wheelers and one mini truck of a person namely Anis. The locks of the houses of those persons who had run away after locking their houses were broken and where they were unable to break the locks, they broke up the gates sand entered the house. The attackers opened the cattle of the villagers killing two goats, to the extent that the police beat the handicapped Afsana (18 years old) who could not run away and was lying on the cot and put stick in her mouth only because why did she not run away.
The first house on the boundary of the village belongs to Usman Ahmad. Sharifan, wife of Usman told that her husband labors residing near Palwal. He has come today itself. They have two sons and seven daughters. Sharifan maintains by running a small general store in the courtyard of the house itself. Sharifan tells that “The police came in the night and committed sabotage. Then, the persons of munchhan came and then the public, they stated that it must be set on fire. She states that the loss of Rs. 5 lakh has been caused – 8 tola gold, two kg silver and buffalos were opened and released, which have not been found yet. They damaged the goods kept in the shop. They broke fridge and goods of the household. They broke up bore and put stones there. Bore was the source of irrigation, water for cattle and drinking water. Two lakh rupees are spent in installing bore.”
As our Inquiry Team was moving ahead in the village, we were seeing the fearful scene of destruction. The dispersed goods after sabotage in every house were loudly speaking about their story.
Yusuf of the village is a farmer. He has 10-12 bigha agricultural land. Yusuf told that “It was 12-1 o’clock. Bajrang Dal and Shiv Sena Activists came. The Kobra (They were referring to the police in black uniform as Kobra) were with them. Our MLA from Ramgarh Gyandev Ahuja was with them. Hindus from Mubarikpur and Naugaon also came. 500-600 persons came in Bolero and Swift vehicle. We were watching standing at distance. The persons wearing yellow uniform came with five buses. Had we come here they would have assaulted us. They were beating goats with lathi, which caused death of many goats. They demolished the cattle houses. They did not spare even the grains. They took away grains also. Even meal was not prepared in many houses.
The crowd targeted all cots in the house of Muhammad Islam. The pots, hearth and pitchers kept in the house were cloven. Many strikes with axe were made on the trunks of keeping wheat for the entire year, the marks of which our team observed. Wife of Islam, Jameela has two sons and one daughter. They took away one hasli (jewelry for neck) of two tola, Duna (neck jewelry) of one tola. Jameela says that she remains outside fearing that someone can come to assault. She comes only when someone comes.”
Haroon aged 36 years is a farmer in the village. He states that “All persons in the village are farmer. There is not even a person who is employed in Govt. service. The damages inflicted are illegal. The police did not come in the village after that day. No one from this Bas has been arrested. The arrests have been made from different Bas.
Zubair, Ghaffar and Liyaqat, the three persons are brothers. Their house is situated at the end of the village. Hasina, wife of Zubair tells that “When the police came in the day, she was cutting millet in the field. Her old aged mother in law was at home. Seeing the police she began fleeing away. After she ran away some distance, she fell down in the field. She narrates that gate, hook, electricity board all these things of her house were broken. The utensils of her house also were broken.” The hole was made by the pointed object in the trunk of the house, in which she had kept grains setting old clothes. Machines and gates of the house all these things were broken. Even the container of water made of cement outside her home was broken. The fodder machine for the cattle was broken. The veranda of her house being cracked had fallen. When she was asked if it was demolished by the police, she replied that it has already fallen itself. Bringing us inside her house, she was showing all the goods to us and she was telling that there is no cot even to sleep for the children. She has brought the cot from someone else. One motorcycle, eight tola gold, Rs. 15000/- of Zubair Rs. 20000/- of Ghaffar and Rs. 10000/- of Liyaqat were taken away by them. Liyaqat had borrowed Rs. 35000/- for cultivation of onion, out of which Rs. 25000/- got spent in farming and Rs. 10000/- got left. Zubair had kept Rs. 15000/- by selling buffalo and Ghaffar is the truck driver so he had kept Rs. 20000/- for Bakraeid in his house, which was taken away by the police.
Taslima, wife of Khalid told our inquiry team that she failed in running away when the attackers came. The police and rioters “Protectors of Cows” dirtily abused her. When she opposed, the police slapped her. The attackers took away the motorcycle of Khalid also with them. The similar story has been narrated by Batuni wife of Usman, Mubina wife of Shaun, Zubaida wife of Aseem. Sajida wife of Arif was fortunate somehow in respect of sabotage. The attackers entered her house but they took away only jewelries and cash. They did not break any good in the house. Sajida brought us to the house of her brother Ali Muhammad @ Ali. Ali has left the village with his family after the attack. Sajida told that the attackers looted the jewelries of the wife of Ali. Both Shamim and Salim orphan brothers got married only sometime ago. The rioter attackers targeted the houses of both the brothers. The new household articles gifted in the marriage including fridge, almirah, bed and pots etc were badly damaged, which were seen in broken state. The attackers took away the jewelries of the bride by breaking the briefcase. Anis, the resident of the village itself, who is the driver by profession, told our inquiry team that he had brought the mini truck Tata 1109 of his owner in the village because it was the occasion of Bakraeid. The crowd breaking the glass of the truck entered the truck and they took away the truck, however, the truck has been found and it is standing in the police outpost.
Batuni wife of Usman narrates that when the gate of the house could not be opened, they broke the door and took away Rs. 15000/-, two tola gold and 1 1/5 kg silver. Since Mubina has mud house, they demolished the very wall taking away Rs. 20000/-. Her husband Shahid Khan has gone outside. Only five months had passed since Lali Shamim got married. They broke all the articles gifted in their marriage. The articles were hit by axe in a way that all were broken into pieces. They took away their bike also. The husband of Zubaida is no more. She maintains herself by preparing midday meal. Not only her house was broken, but her utensils also were broken when money and jewelries were not found.
They told Shabnam that she eats meat, where was her husband. When they slapped her, she ran away but she was dragged and they began to filthily abuse her. They robbed her 1 1/5 kg silver and one tola gold. They beat the three year child Faizan. The injury mark did not go still now and fear from heart did not cease. Haseena, who had the child of 15 days requested much that she must be spared. She has the child of her body, however, she was beaten and Rs. 25000/- were kept in the house was taken. It has become the story of every person in the village. The people do not have utensils to cook meal. They do not have grains as well. All the persons go to the forest when the sun sets. They cook something to eat there by collecting woods spending entire night in terror.
Yad Muhammad is 53 years old. His three sons drive truck and he is a farmer. His daughter Raheel had come to the house to celebrate Bakraeid, who has been married in Bandoli. Her hasli of two tola was taken away. They took away 1 1/5 kg silver from the house of Yad Muhammad. They had broken utensils and cots in their house. He narrates that when the police had come in the night of 14th date they had beaten the women so they had fled due to fear. Yad Muhammad narrates that they took away his ration card as well.
Shiv Sena, Vishwa Hindu Parishad, Bajrang Dal and BJP had called closure on 17th September in Mubarikpur so the market and shops remained closed and even Friday Prayer could not be offered in Mubarikpur.
The villagers say that:-
- Two persons namely Dindar @ Langra r/o Rewada Bas and Khurshid @ Mulla residents of Baghaura PS Kishangarh were engaged in trade of slaughtering cows, calves and katra in liaison with the police for a long time, for which they paid Rs. 20000/- per month to the policemen namely Nizamuddin and Sultan Singh.
- When the police got the news of cow slaughter and when they were preparing to conduct raid, these policemen provided opportunity to these butchers (Deendar @ Langra and Khurshid) by informing them by telephone.
- All the arrested persons are innocent. Even single guilty person was not arrested, while the police know about the real persons.
- The utensils for eating and drinking are not available in the houses of Rewada Bas. All the household articles have been broken and the cash and jewelries have been taken away.
Demand of the Villagers:
- The innocent persons must be released.
- The guilty persons must be arrested.
- The compensation for the damages to the people must be given.
Statement of the police:-
The SHO of PS Naugaon Shivram Gurjar stated that he got the news of cow slaughter on Wednesday (14th September) at 11.00. When the police reached the spot, they found some remains of cow slaughter, on which the news was communicated to the senior officers, the place was dug out by JCB Machine, in which 36 skeletons were found. The police got released 6 cow progeny by arresting 10 persons from the spot. Knives, scales, weights and Kentra vehicle and four bikes also were recovered.
Statement of MLA Gyandev Ahuja:
All the activists who went to the place of occurrence on Thursday (15th September) returned in disciplined manner. The activists and administration did not commit any sabotage in any house. The very supporters of the former District Pramukh Mr. Khan have tried to disturb the situation by committing sabotage in houses. The Chief Minister and Home Minister have been communicated about the incident.
- Raghunath Gram Panchayat is Muslim majority
- This action has been taken to terrorize a particular community.
- The beef trade was going on in the knowledge of the police, for which money was given every month to the police.
- The information of cow slaughter in Bakraeid was communicated to the organizations like Shiv Sena, Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Bajrang Dal due to personal enmity.
- The local police under pressure from the senior officers tried to purport themselves to be innocent by arresting innocent people.
- The purpose to sabotage and demolition in the houses was to create terror in the hearts of the people by causing maximum financial damages to them and to make remain backward, which has continued to be done with a particular community and caste.
- The activists of Shiv Sena, Bajrang Dal and BJP committed sabotage in presence of MLA Gyandev Ahuja.
- This incident has created terror in the hearts of the opponents.
- The incident of sabotage and demolition committed in Rewada Bas has pushed the economic condition of the people many years back.
- The place of cow slaughter is 4 km away from Rewada Bas. There are sands and canals on the way, where bike cannot go, how the police recovered bikes from there? Definitely, these bikes have been lifted from the village on 15th September.
- The place of occurrence is so deserted that the police would have to walk on foot 2-3 km to reach there. If the police reach there by walking on foot so much distance, will the people remain there seeing the police? How did the police arrest 10 people from the spot?
- The judicial inquiry of entire case must be conducted.
- The compensation for losses of the people must be given by the State Government.
- The life and property of the people of Raghunathgadh Gram Panchayat must be protected.
- The guilty persons must be arrested and the cases filed against the innocent persons must be withdrawn.
- The case must be filed against the persons, policemen and officers participated in the sabotage and destruction.
- The role of MLA Gyandev Ahuja must be inquired into.
- The policemen and officers engaged in beef trade by taking money must be arrested.
- The goodwill meeting must be held to restore communal environment.
- The action must be taken against the guilty persons to remove fear from the hearts of the people.
- The people must be awakened towards law.
- The proper action must be taken against the organizations attacking Muslims and Dalits in the name of cow protection.
- The Judiciary and Human Rights Commission itself should take cognizance of the instant matter.
- The powers spreading communal hatred should be separated.
Members of Fact Finding Team:
Ansar Indori (NCHRO)
Muhammad Talha (NCHRO)
Sunil Kumar (Independent Writer and Social Activist),
Mrs. Ashok Kumari (Research Scholar, Buddhism, University of Delhi)