Policemen deployed in Deoghar for the Ajsu bandh on Wednesday. Picture by Arun Keshri
Dumka, Aug. 28: Four persons were arrested today in connection with yesterday’s lynching of Ajsu Deoghar district president Mukesh Singh and his aide amid revelations that the killing took place in front of policemen who had been alerted by one of the victims, but were hopelessly outnumbered.
Police, who are still clueless about the actual reason behind the mob frenzy, admitted that a patrolling team of four had reached the spot near a railway halt in Jasidih, 15km from district headquarters, where Mukesh and Santosh Sharma (not Singh as reported earlier) were beaten to death with sticks by villagers.
However, the policemen could not do anything as they were outnumbered — 2,000 villagers had gathered at the spot while the lynching was carried out by 40-50. The victims had criminal antecedents.
“The policemen were not in a position to resist the mob as they were too few in number. By the time, more forces rushed to the spot, both had died,” Deoghar SP Prabhat Kumar told The Telegraph.
On the motive behind the twin murders, police said that prima facie, it appeared to be a fallout of sudden anger among the members of a night-vigilante group — young men keeping watch over the village — at Ajan Tola.
But the way Mukesh, also the mukhiya of Bargunia panchayat in Deoghar _ and his aides were chased for about 2km before being caught near Kumrabad railway halt on Jasidih-Madhupur line several questions.
It was while fleeing in his Bolero that Mukesh had managed to call the police.
“We are still investigating whether there was some enmity between the Ajsu leader and villagers considering the intensity of the mob’s fury,” the SP said.
Kumar further said they were on the lookout for Mukesh’s companions, who had gone to the village with him but escaped in the nick of time.
Today’s Santhal Pargana bandh by Ajsu in protest against yesterday’s incident evoked mixed response except in Deoghar and Jasidih, where business activities and transport were badly hit.