Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh
Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh
ANI Photo

Mumbai: In a bid to checkmate the BJP, which has launched a campaign demanding his resignation, Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh on Wednesday released the names of 101 people, including nine juveniles, thus far arrested in connection with the Palghar mob lynching case. He went on to say that all the 101 were arrested within eight hours of the incident and none of them is a Muslim.

Deshmukh, in his Facebook address, reiterated that none of the accused in the Palghar mob lynching belonged to the Muslim community. Referring to contentious video clips that apparently contained the word Shoaib, a Muslim-sounding name, Deshmukh pointed out that, "There was a sound heard in the video, 'oye bas'; people circulated it online and some called it 'Shoaib bas'.

He informed that he was sharing the list of all 101 people arrested for those who are trying to make it into a communal issue. Some people are having pipedreams about politicising the issue. But it is not the time to play politics; rather, this is the time to fight the coronavirus collectively, Deshmukh said.

He likened such daydreamers to Mungerilal, a fictional character from a Doordarshan series, whose fantasies land him in comic situations. ‘’Their dream will never materialize,’’ he noted.

On the night of April 16, two sadhus and a driver, who were on their way to Silvassa, were lynched by residents in Gadchinchle village of Palghar district on the suspicion that they were thieves.

The Criminal Investigation Department of the Maharashtra Police on Wednesday took over the investigation into the case. Additional Director General Atul Chandra Kulkarni is heading the probe.

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