A young RSS worker, Rajesh Phoolmali, 28, was brutally assaulted by a Muslim mob on May 18 after he raised objections over the derogatory post made by them on Sita Mata. As per reports, clashes broke out between the residents of Hapala and Dipala villages in Khandwa district of Madhya Pradesh, injuring 10-11 people from both the sides.
Rajesh Phoolmali was one of the severely injured men in the skirmish that broke out over disparaging remark made against Sita Mata by the other side. Besides, Rajesh, his sister Sheela Phoolmali and friend Pawan Solanki also suffered injuries. While Sheela was admitted in a hospital in Khandwa, Rajesh was rushed to a hospital in Sagar, as he suffered critical head injuries.
Rajesh, his sister Sheela and friend had suffered injuries
Rajesh was later shifted to Gandhi Medical College in Bhopal. As his condition continued to deteriorate the National Commission for Scheduled Castes in New Delhi took cognisance of Rajesh’s worsening health and got him shifted to New Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital on 21 May. After fighting for life for more than 12 days, Rajesh succumbed to his injuries in Safdarjung hospital on May 31. His dead body was later brought to his native village Khandwa and last rites were performed as per Hindu traditions on June 1.
The local administration initially tried to downplay the incident claiming that the clashes erupted between the two communities over a trivial issue of goat grazing. However, the locals in the area alleged that the murder of the RSS worker was a pre-planned conspiracy by the Muslim mob.
Altercation started over derogatory and anti-Hindu posts on Facebook
ASP (City) Khandwa, Seema Alava while talking to OpIndia said an altercation between the two communities over an indecent remark over Sita Mata on Facebook resulted in violent clashes between the members of two community. She further added that a total of 24 accused were identified and 17 of them have already been arrested by the police. Investigations are underway to determine the whereabouts of the remaining 7 accused, she added.
According to an article published in RSS-published Organiser, the RSS worker along with his friends had earlier approached Ramnagar Police Station to file a complaint against the offenders for posting vulgar remarks against Sita Mata. However, no action was taken against the accused.
Rajesh’s brother, Manoj Phoolmali has told Organiser that his brother was killed through a pre-planned strategy by Muslims. “The dispute started on April 22, when a local Muslim had made derogatory remarks against Sita Mata on Facebook. Some men from the Hindu community expressed their strong objection to the post. Later, at the request of a few villagers, my brother went to the Ramnagar police outpost to file a complaint against the offensive post. The police initially refused to file an against the offenders but when Rajesh insisted, they filed an FIR. They initially booked 4-5 Muslims involved in the case but later released them,” Manoj said to Organiser.
The complaint was filed on April 29.
Muslims targeted Rajesh over the police complaint, says brother
As per the Organiser report, Manoj further added that the day the Muslim men were released from the jail, they threatened to kill his brother. He claims that the Muslim men caught hold of Rajesh on May 18 and mercilessly thrashed him. Their sister, Sheela was also badly assaulted by the assailants. After fighting for about 2 weeks for his life, Rajesh breathed his last on May 31 in the hospital in New Delhi.
Manoj further claims that the Muslim mob attacked other Hindus in the region as well. “They pelted stones at us. Attacked other Hindus with iron rods and butcher’s knife,” Manoj said.