A campaign in support of Yogesh Raj, the prime accused in the Bulandshahr violence, has started on social media declaring him innocent and demanding justice for him, a day after the Bajrang Dal leader said he had nothing to do with Monday’s incident.
The Bulandshahr district convenor of the Bajrang Dal, the youth wing of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad, defended himself on Wednesday, claiming he wasn’t present when the clashes between police and a local mob left a police inspector and a villager dead.
In a video message circulated on television channels and social media, Raj said he wasn’t a witness to the alleged slaughter of cows that sparked the violence on Monday. Raj claimed he reached the village of Mahaw, where the alleged slaughter took place, after receiving information from his associates, raising questions about the authenticity of a first information report or FIR purportedly filed by him in the cow slaughter case.
He is among the 28 people from nearby villages, who have been named, and 60 unidentified persons against whom Syana Police have registered a case of murder and rioting.
The Bharatiya Janata Party’s Syana youth wing president Shikhar Agarwal and Vishwa Hindu Parishad’s former town president Upendra Raghav have also been named in the police document.
Amit Kumar Mahur updated his profile picture with Raj on Facebook and wrote about his support on his wall.
“Mai bhi Yogesh Raj Bharat Mata ki Jai. I am with Yogesh Raj and all innocent Hindus. Give justice to martyr Sumit,” Mahur posted.
His post and picture were immediately liked by 200 people with many declaring their support for the Bajrang Dal leader.
“Hum is Dharm Yudh me Yogesh Raj aur Bajrang Dal ke Saath hai (We are with Yogesh Raj and Bajrang Dal in this war of religion),” Manish Bhardwaj of Bulandshahr commented.
Another person also demanded justice for Raj.
“Ya to BJP police ko sudhaar le nahi to hum Hindu BJP ko sudhar denge. Yogesh Raj Nirdosh Hai (Either the BJP should improve the functioning of police or we Hindus will do that with the BJP. Yogesh Raj is innocent),” Yash Pandit Bajrangi wrote.
A police official said on the condition of anonymity local intelligence officials are keeping a watch on social media along with experts of the cyber cell.
Meanwhile, senior leaders of Bajrang Dal and VHP met the families of Raj and other jailed activists in their villages and assured them their support.
First Published: Dec 06, 2018 13:44 IST