Abdul Samad Saifi had said he was forced to chant “Jai Sri Ram” and “Vande Matram” with beard cut suggesting a communal angle to the attack.
Uttar Pradesh, Gaziabad, On June 5th, Abdul from Balandshahr had gone to Ghaziabad and said that he was abducted by an auto driver and four others, taken to a forested area, locked up in a room, brutally beaten, his beard was cut off and he was down on his knees pleading for mercy. He also had a pistol pointed to his head and was forced to chant “Jai Shri Ram.” Through all this, a video recorded the events and they also made him watch videos of other Muslims being attacked while they boasted how they had killed many belonging to the Muslim community before.
While the accused who attacked him claimed that he sold amulets which brought them “bad luck” which was why they attacked him, also calling him a Pakistani spy. His son, however, has denied the police’s claims saying that they sell amulets. “The police is wrong in saying that my father used to sell ‘tabeez’ (amulets). No one in our family does this business. We are carpenters. The police are not saying the right thing – let them investigate and prove it,” said Babloo Saifi, Abdul’s son.
He also said, “We filed an FIR at the Loni police station on June 6.”
Abdul related, “A loved one in my family died on May 9 and I could not go there because of Ramadan, so I went there on June 5. …” A rickshaw came to me at about half-past one and they offered to drop me off at the canal nearby, I sat down with them and that was my only mistake.”
In the rickshaw near the border area of Loni, he was abducted by the men where they took him to a forest and started brutally thrashing him. He begged them to stop, but they did not and when he started moaning in pain, one man asked if he was taking the name of Allah. After that, they forced him to chant slogans of Jai Shri Ram and Vande Mataram.
“I couldn’t bear the pain and at the same time he brought two scissors and cut my beard,” he said.
“The accused then made a video of me boasting this is what we do to Muslims, it will send a message to all Muslims and they released me after torturing me for four hours,” he said.
What The UP Police Say
The UP Police, however, denied any “communal angle” in the incident, saying that he was beaten up over the amulets he sold to some men, which they believe “didn’t work”.
They state Abdul was attacked by six men – Hindus and Muslims – and he knew them according to the police statement. The police say three people have been arrested so far in the assault case. The Ghaziabad police officer Iraj Raja is heard saying in an official video statement, “When we investigated this case, we found that he (Abdul) came on June 5 from the Loni border area. From there, Abdul Samad, who makes amulets, went to Hazipur Village. He already knew the accused. The men, who were upset with him over the amulets, had called him.”
The FIR against Twitter and eight others have been filed under IPC sections 153 (provocation for rioting), 153A (promoting enmity between different groups), 295A (acts intended to outrage religious feelings), 505 (mischief), 120B (criminal conspiracy) and 34 (common intention).
According to the police, a case was registered on June 7 and an investigation is underway, while one of the attackers, Pravesh Gujjar, has also been arrested.
According to police officer Atal Kumar, the second attacker has also been identified and will be arrested soon.
According to police, several cases of violence and robbery have been registered against Pravesh in the area while police are also searching for other accused.
Leaders, Journalists Who Criticized the Crime had FIRs Filed Against them by UP Authorities
While the video ran viral on social media with netizens expressing shock at the brutal crime, leaders strongly condemned the incident and their posts were retweeted thousands of times. Mohammed Zubair co-founder of Alt News who reported the incident in Alt News unleashed the fury of BJP supporters to start a Twitter trend, demanding his arrest for spreading “lies.” Eight others, including journalists, such as Rana Ayyub, Saba Naqvi, Samajwadi Party leaders, and Congress leaders had FIR’s filed against them for, “provoked communal sentiments.” Yogi Adityanath Chief Minister of UP accused Rahul Gandhi Congress leader of never speaking the truth when Rahul Gandhi expressed his distress of the crime.
The BJP party denies a communal angle to this and Union Minister Ravi Shankar in a string of tweets wrote, “What happened in UP was illustrative of Twitter’s arbitrariness in fighting fake news”.
However, there are many loose ends to the story, such as Abdul being forced to say Jai Shree Ram, and the accused boasting of other Muslims they had killed as they forced Abdul to watch and also calling him a Pakistani spy. Abdul states he is a carpenter and not an amulet seller, and he also originates from Balandshahr traveling to Gaziabad, so it raises questions of how did his attackers know him when he hails from another town. The investigation is still on and the full truth is yet to be revealed.
The link to the video is shared below
In Rafi Abdul Samad Police Complaint Abdul Samad has Clearly mention that he has been Forced to Chant Jai Shree Ram
— faizan (@faizan0008) June 16, 2021
50,000 people gathered in support of murder accused in Haryana. Hate speeches were delivered there, no one get arrested yet, No FIR against Suraj Pal Amu.
Muslim journalists posted a video statement of a victim, FIR registered against journalists.
— Md Asif Khan (@imMAK02) June 16, 2021