The Ajsu protest in Deoghar on August 28
Dumka, Sept. 3: Two policemen, including the officer-in-charge of Jasidih police station, have been suspended for inaction during the lynching of Ajsu district president Mukesh Singh and his aide by a mob on August 27.
Last evening, Deoghar SP Prabhat Kumar issued the suspension orders against OC Ram Babu Mandal and ASI Rajesh Prasad, who were present at the spot near a railway halt on Jasidih-Madhupur line on that day.
According to Kumar, the role of both police officers has come under the scanner because “prima facie, it has been found that their approach was casual” and that they did not move to rescue the victims.
“The photographs and video footages of the lynching clearly show that the police team, which had reached the spot before the deaths, did nothing,” Kumar said.
The Telegraph had reported on August 29 that Mukesh, also the mukhiya of Bargunia panchayat in Deoghar, had managed to call police while fleeing in his SUV after initial conflict with a night-vigilante group near Ajan Tola.
However, he and aide Santosh Sharma were caught by the chasing crowd near Kumrabad railway halt and beaten to death in front of the police team, led by the OC, which had reached the spot by then.
“By the time more forces rushed in, it was too late and both had succumbed to their injuries,” the SP said, not ruling out the possibility that the policemen might have fired in the air to disperse the crowd.
Kumar admitted that any attempt to save Mukesh and Santosh might have further enraged the villagers and led to more severe consequences as the policemen were outnumbered — a crowd of 2,000 had gathered at the spot.
“Further investigations will reveal the actual circumstances that led to the lynching and also shed light on police inaction. As of now, we have been able to identify more villagers involved in the lynching through video footages and photographs. Attempts are on to nab them all,” the senior officer said.
Jasidih police had initially registered an FIR against seven known and around 40 unknown villagers, of whom, only four have been arrested.