51-year-old Mohammad Akhlaq was kicked and beaten to death while his 22-year-old son was seriously injured by a mob.
The family was suspected of storing and eating beef, which is banned in many parts of India.
Akhlaq’s daughter Sajida claims that an announcement at a local Hindu temple accused her father of slaughtering a cow which incensed people of the area. “They dragged my brother and father outside the room and used bricks which they found under his bed to beat them,” Sajida said. “My father was taken outside the house and beaten to death. My brother was dragged to the courtyard downstairs and they used bricks to hit him on the head and chest, leaving him unconscious. They also tried to molest me and hit my grandmother on her face. They threatened to kill me if I said a word to the police.”
A forensic test revealed that the meat found in Akhlaq's fridge was actually mutton. On the night of September 28, police collected a sample of the meat to be tested. The first round of tests revealed it was mutton — not beef. The police sent it to another lab, and again it was found that the assumed beef was indeed mutton.
The family has not only filed a case but identified around 10 men as well. Six of the identified people have been arrested and investigations are on the way.
Slaughter of cows is a sensitive issue in India as the animal is considered sacred by Hindus, who comprise 80% of the country's population.