Jamshedpur: A 22-year-old man died on Sunday after he was allegedly beaten up by locals and later arrested on suspicion of theft at Saraikela Kharsawanand in Jharkhand.
The deceased has been identified as Tabrez Ansari.
He was admitted to Sadar hospital on Sunday morning and then referred to Tata Main Hospital, Jamshedpur where he was declared dead on arrival.
Ansari's family has, however, alleged that the attack was communal and that he was made to chant 'Jai Shri Ram' and 'Jai Hanuman'.
"Some locals thrashed Tabrez and later gave him over to the police. He was suspected of theft but it was a communal attack as he had a Muslim name. They made him chant 'Jai Shri Ram' and 'Jai Hanuman' again and again. We were not allowed to meet him at the hospital. We have the video of the incident. I demand the culprits be arrested," Tabrez's relative Maqsood Alam said while speaking to ANI.
A video of the incident shows the mob beating Ansari and asking him to chant "Jai Shri Ram" and "Jai Hanuman" as he is seen chanting and pleading with the mob to stop the assault.
"We want action against the police personnel who were on duty at that time," another relative said.
Kharsawan superintendent of police Chandan Sinha told HuffPost India that Tabrez was handed over to the police after being beaten up and was in judicial custody since 18 June. On the morning of 22 June, his condition worsened and he was taken to the hospital where he died. While many people were involved in the mob that beat up Tabrez, the primary accused, one Pappu Mandal, was arrested after his death.
According to The Indian Express, police reached the spot where Ansari was tied up around 6 am, Sinha said. Ansari was then taken to a police post. According to court documents, his statement was recorded at 9:30 am when he admitted that he had committed the theft with two other men. Thereafter, he was produced in court and remanded in judicial custody.
"There, a motorcycle theft had taken place and these people were passing by, so the villagers caught them and then beat him up very badly. There were two friends with him who ran away," the relative told NDTV.
Police said a case was registered against Ansari under IPC Sections 457 (lurking house-trespass or housebreak by night), 380 (theft), 411 (dishonestly receiving stolen property) and others.
Police have also lodged a case against the villagers who were seen beating Ansari under IPC Sections 302 (murder) and 295 A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religions or religious beliefs), among others. They have arrested one person in this connection so far, "We are investigating the matter as these cases are on a rise these days," Sinha said.
An FIR has been registered and further investigation is underway, police said.
With inputs from agencies