SDM of Dadri threatens Ikhlaq’s family from speaking out

Activists gheraoed the car of the SDM after he threatened the family of Ikhlaq

By Hedayat Ulla for

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Dadri: Even as Uttar Pradesh administration comes into criticism for its handling of the incidents that led to the lynching of Mohammad Ikhaq over rumours about beef, activists allege that Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM) of Dadri Rajesh Kumar has threatened the family of the slain of “dire consequences” if they speak out.”

The incident occurred as a group of social activists from Jamia Nagar, New Delhi led by Asna Nousheen were at the victim’s house in Bisahra village of Dadri.

Tahseen, a social activist from Jamia Nagar narrated the incident to over the phone:
A man in white shirt came with few policemen, we thought him to be a political leader as the room was small we came out. Suddenly I heard the man instructing the relatives of Ikhlaq-”Don’t speak out much; if not then you will face dire consequences. Why you are not allowing BJP people to come? Let them come, meet them and talk to them.”

“When we heard this we were shocked and asked him, who are you? He didn’t reply, and then we asked a policeman escorting him. He replied-He is SDM Saab. When our team started asking-What authority you have to command them? He hurriedly moved towards his car. The policemen surrounded him and he left.”

“Now the policemen started threatening us and asked-who we were? They searched us, checked our ID card and mobile phones including the pictures and if we have recorded anything.”

Asna Nousheen also confirmed the incident. “What I felt shocking was, a government machinery and someone who is representing the government have come to a family who have lost a husband and their son is battling life and death and in that pain the SDM tells them “don’t speak much or else face consequences “ we were shocked that instead of protecting them he was threatening them.”

The social activists from Jamia Nagar followed SDM towards the main road. By this time, this correspondent who was towards the backyard of the house came at front and eyewitness to what happened after SDM left.

After ten minutes a group of more than ten policemen came in the house and started talking with family members. I tried to get in but was not allowed by policemen, they started the conversation. I stood near the entrance of door and tried to listen, the policeman started narrating the story about the misbehavior done to SDM by those activists and slander about them. The entire picture presented by the police before the family was-“they were anti-social elements trying to create a tensed atmosphere.”

In this tense situation one can imagine the mental stress and emotional state of the victim’s family. They don’t want to have a conflict with the police and in situation where there are just two Muslim houses. They are under police protection and don’t want to speak against them.

After the meeting was ended by a gesture by a policeman, Jaan Muhammad, a brother of Ikhlaq, gave an interview to some news channels present and said that-SDM is cooperating and the people who misbehaved towards SDM were neither from village nor from family.

As several policemen and policewomen are deployed around Ikhlaq’s house and throughout the village, one wonders if the police are there for protection of the family or to control them.