Three persons have been arrested by the Uttar Pradesh police after the residents of Kacchi Basti area in Kanpur allegedly beat up a man in the middle of the road over the allegation that he was forcing a Hindu woman to convert to Islam.
According to reports, a man identified as Afsar Ahmad was allegedly roughed up by the residents of Kanpur and allegedly made him chant “Jai Shri Ram” over suspicion that he was forcing a Hindu woman to convert to Islam. The incident had taken place at the Kacchi Basti locality in the Barra area of Kanpur on Wednesday.
The purported video of the incident had gone viral on the internet, in which some people were seen allegedly beating Afsar Ahmad while his five-year-old daughter pleaded with them to let her father go.
कानपुर: वरुण विहार में कुछ दिन पहले एक महिला द्वारा मुस्लिम युवक पर जबरन धर्म परिवर्तन कराने का आरोप लगाया गया था, जिसके बाद बजरंग दल के लोगों ने युवक की जमकर पिटाई की थी, मासूम बच्ची लगातार लगा रही थी पिता को बचाने की गुहार लेकिन पुलिस बनी रही मूकदर्शक।#UttarPradesh #UPPolice pic.twitter.com/NLSicpNOCw— UP Tak (@UPTakOfficial) August 11, 2021
Reportedly, the residents of the Kacchi Basti had thrashed Ahmad, an e-rickshaw driver, accusing him of raising anti-national slogans. The police had rescued Ahmad and taken him and his daughter to a police station.
Following the incident, Kanpur Police Commissioner Asim Arun had said the three men were arrested on Thursday night for allegedly attacking Ahmad. The police added that one of the arrested, Aman Gupta, has affiliation to the Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP). The police had registered a case based on a complaint filed by the victim.
Kanpur: Dalit Woman accuse Afsar Ahmad of forcefully converting Hindus
However, the residents of the neighbourhood have revealed that the man was beaten up for pressurising Hindus to convert to Islam. A woman, who is a Dalit, has alleged that Afsar Ahmad was pressuring her to convert to Islam. She said that she had approached the police and registered a complaint, however, no action was taken.
As police failed to act against her complaint, she went to the Bajrang Dal and met the outfit’s district organiser Dilip Singh. The Hindu activist also reportedly confirmed that the Bajrang Dal interfered after the woman accused Ahmad of forcefully converting her to Islam.
“Two days ago, we filed a complaint of religious conversion with the police, but they did not take any action on it. Since the police did not take any action, today, we took action,” Dilip Singh said.
Dalit woman had accused Muslims of the area of stalking and harassing her daughter
According to Swarajya journalist Swati Goel Sharma, the residents who thrashed Afsar Ahmad were mostly Dalits. The journalist added that the attack case is connected to another case complaint filed by a Dalit woman accusing some neighbouring Muslim youths of stalking and harassing her minor daughter.
At the heart of the recent Kanpur case where a Muslim man was beaten and asked to chant Jai Shri Ram by a crowd comprising mostly Dalits, is a police case where a Dalit woman complained against some neighbouring Muslim youths of stalking and harassing her minor daughter pic.twitter.com/YeJEtxBvus— Swati Goel Sharma (@swati_gs) August 13, 2021
Earlier, the police had said that the assault on Ahmad was linked to a dispute between two families belonging to different communities who live in the slum where the incident took place.
According to the journalist, Afsar Ahmad is said to have had no role in the harassment case, and he happens to be a relative of the Muslim men who were booked in the case filed by the Dalit woman. She added that two of the three men arrested were Dalits.
The poor man who was beaten up – Afsar – is said to have had no role in the harassment case. He happens to be a relative of the Muslim men who were booked under IPC 354 (Outraging modesty of women)— Swati Goel Sharma (@swati_gs) August 13, 2021
On Friday, all the three accused were released on bail by police as they were booked under IPC sections which had a jail term of fewer than seven years.