As many as seven gau rakshaks were injured when a mob of about 50 people assaulted them in Ahmednagar in Maharashtra. According to reports, around 50 people attacked and beat up gau rakshaks (cow vigilantes) after they reportedly stopped a tempo suspected of illegally transporting cows to a slaughterhouse. Police has reported a case of attempted murder.
The tempo owner, Wahid Shaikh, and driver Raju Fatrubhai Shaikh, have been arrested under the Maharashtra Animal Preservation Act.
Police Inspector Bajirao Powar of Shreegonda police station said that around 11:30 am on Saturday, gau rakshaks chased down a tempo suspected of transporting cows for illegal slaughter. Once the tempo was stopped, the gau rakshaks went to the police station to follow due legal procedure. At least two cows and ten oxen were rescued from the traders.
However, later in the evening when the gau rakshaks stepped out, a mob, including the owner and driver of the tempo and local butchers, attacked them to take revenge.
The gau rakshaks belong to a Pune based group called the Akhil Bhartiya Krushi Gau Seva Sangh. One Shivshankar Rajendra Swami, who claims to be ‘honorary animal welfare officer’ said that a team of 12 had come to Shrigonda taluka to keep a watch for vehicles illegally transporting cows to an animal market that is held in Kashti village every Saturday.
As per the FIR, about 30 persons are booked under Sections 307 (attempt to murder), 395 (dacoity) and other sections of the IPC. Seven persons were injured in the incident. Investigation has been initiated to confirm the sequence of events and arrest the assailants.