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Tabrez Ansari Lynching: Police Drops Murder Charge Against Accused

Police in Jharkhand has dropped murder charges against 11 men accused of lynching 24-year-old Tabrez Ansari, citing the post-mortem report that says he died of a cardiac arrest.

Tabrez Ansari was lynched to death on June 17 after being forced to chant Jai Sri Ram and Jai Hanuman in Dahtkidih village under Seraikela police station (PS) in Seraikela-Kharsawan district. However, the doctors who performed an autopsy on Tabrez Ansari found that the Jharkhand youth had died due to stress and following a cardiac arrest.

With the murder charges being dropped, 11 people, against whom charge sheets have been filed for beating Tabrez to death, will be facing trial under Section 304 of IPC, which is culpable homicide not amounting to murder, instead of murder charges under Section 302.

Saraikela-Kharsawan’s superintendent of police Kartik S said it was concluded that the “incident was not pre-mediated murder based on autopsy reports and other evidence in the case”. The final post-mortem report pointed out that Ansari died due to a cardiac arrest and a haemorrhage in his head was not fatal, he said.

On June 17, 2019, Tabrez Ansari, and his two friends, Mohammed Irfaan (25) and Numer Ali (26), were accosted by a mob of villagers in Dhatkidih village.

Tabrez was working as a welder in Pune and had come home to celebrate Eid. He had got married only two months ago on April 26. He was due to return to Pune with his new wife, Shaista Parveen (21) on June 24, 2019, to resume work at an iron-fabrication unit. He had lost both his parents at a young age and had migrated to eke out his livelihood eight years ago.

“They were on their way back from Jamshedpur…around 100 people stopped them at Dhatkidih village and asked their name…when they found out he is a Muslim, they assaulted him and forced him to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’, said Tabrez’s wife in her complaint to the police.

The video of Tabrez being tied to a pole and being brutally assaulted clearly shows the terrorist mob asking his name, and forcing him to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’ and ‘Jai Hanuman’. The cold-blooded lynching continued for 14 hours before he was arrested by the police on June 18 for theft of a motorcycle. According to the family, the police did not take into account the savage assault on him or his physical injuries and failed to provide him with proper medical treatment.

On June 22, 2019, four days after he was remanded to judicial custody, Tabrez was found unconscious in jail and admitted to Seraikela Sadar (district) hospital for treatment, where he succumbed to his injuries. Videos which have surfaced since then, have revealed that the police officers, who took Tabrez to the hospital did not even allow him a stretcher after he reached the hospital. The videos show that Tabrez was dragged by his collar by the police, showcasing their callousness and lack of empathy over his condition.

Both the police as well as doctors who examined him first were held responsible for Tabrez Ansari’s death by a three-member team led by Saraikela-Kharwan Deputy Commissioner Anjaneyullu Dodde set up to probe its cause. However, the final report of the post-mortem seems to have given a clean chit to the policemen and the doctors.

“While the police reached late, the doctors did not diagnose the skull injury correctly,” the report, which came out in July, had said.

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