Just days after 15-year-old Junaid Khan was lynched on a Mathura-bound train, leading to street protests against mob violence across India, it seems fear still stalked the Muslim community.
On Sunday, a 42-year-old man was caught at the Aligarh railway station wearing a burqa, reported Times of India. When questioned by the police, the man — an assistant engineer in Aligarh's Kasimpur power station — told them that he wanted to conceal his identity. He was scared of being lynched for being a Muslim.
Nazmul Hassan told the cops that he was threatened a week back by a fellow traveller when he was going to Delhi to meet his ailing cousin. "I had read about Junaid's killing in a train in Ballabhgarh a few days ago. I was scared for my life after the threat, but couldn't avoid travelling. So I thought of wearing a burqa," he said.
The investigating officer told ToI that they found nothing suspicious in Hassan's statement. All the investigating agencies verified Hasan's statement and said that he had worn the burqa out of fear.
Meanwhile, Haryana police is now offering two lakhs for any information that could lead to the killer of Junaid Khan. Police said nobody has coming forward so far with any information.
Junaid was stabbed to death by a mob inside a Mathura-bound train, while two of his brothers were injured, when they were returning home to Ballabhgarh after Eid shopping at Sadar Bazaar. His brothers had alleged that the mob called them beef-eaters and attacked them.
An Indian Express report had noted how fear gripped Junaid's village on Eid. "When I leave home, I wear shirt-pant, not kurta-pyjama, because that way no one can tell I am Muslim, and I can avoid being called a Pakistani," a man told the newspaper. The children were told not to talk to anyone unknown and not to leave the village.
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