Two sadhus who were belonging to Palghar district in Maharashtra were lynched, by a mob on April 16, 2020.
Chikne Maharaj Kalpavrukshagiri (70 years old) and Sushilgiri Maharaj (35 years old) along with their 30-year-old driver Nilesh Telgade, were traveling to attend the funeral of their common acquaintance in Surat, amidst the lockdown. As they were going a group of men stopped them and attacked them with sticks and axes. Later, amidst the presence of police, the mob took sadhus away and killed them.
The mob lynched three people because of the rumors on social media that those three are child kidnappers. Rumors have created incidents like these many times.
Later, when videos went viral, police were seen, standing at the place of incident, doing nothing. However, police said that they tried to stop it but they were beaten too. The mob accused the sadhus of being child kidnappers.
In the videos that went viral, the voice of ‘oye bas’ came, but it was being rumored as ‘Shoaib bas’. These type of rumors leads to these incidents.
On April 19, the Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Udhhav Thackery after the incident, said that strict actions will be taken against people who were involved in this incident and justice will be provided. He further handed the cases to the CID.
On April 20, 101 people were arrested by the police involved in this case which includes 9 juveniles, and two police officers were also suspended.
Anil Deshmukh, Home Minister of Maharashtra posted a complete list of people arrested who were involved in this incident, on April 22. He also informed that none of the people arrested has Muslims. He further informed that further investigation is to be carried out by the Criminal Investigation Department (CID).
Everyone is reacting strongly against this incident. Many leaders like Devendra Fadnavis who is the former chief minister of Maharashtra, Yogi Adityanath, chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, have demanded a high-level inquiry against criminals and polices involved in this incident.
Udhav Thackery has also requested to Amit Shah, the Home Minister, to take strict against people who are communalizing this incident.
Maharashtra police have been given a notice by the National Human Rights Commission of India asking for a report within four weeks with details of action taken against the criminals and the relief provided to the victims.