A Muslim youth Mohamed Faizan, 24, of Poravachery village of Nagapattinam district of Tamil Nadu was allegedly attacked by members of Hindu Makkal Katchi, a Sangh Parivar outfit on Thursday, July 10, for his facebook post about eating beef. This is the first time such an attack has been carried out in Tamil Nadu. The Police have arrested five men involved in the attack.
The attacks on Muslims and Dalits have been on the rise since the Narendra Modi government won a decisive second term with a huge majority. The victims of communal violence are generally Muslims and Dalits involved in cattle trade in one form or the other.
The victim Mohamed Faizan told NewsClick, "I am the first victim of attack in the name of beef in Tamil Nadu and I should be the last too. I am even ready to join with progressive organisations to end this inhuman act against the right to food of an individual. The members of Hindu Makkal Katchi posted vulgar comments on my Facebook post and threatened me of dire consequences. Later they deleted the comments. I believed that the issue was over by then. But, around 30 men after masking their faces, attacked me with dangerous weapons while I was waiting near a shop".
Having still not recovered from the shock of being attacked, Faizan added, "few policemen were on their way to another spot for enquiry and they stopped after they saw the mob. If the police had not arrived, I would have been killed by them.”
The leaders of the ‘sangh parivar’s’ organisation, have been propagating venomous opinions on beef consumption under the shadow of cow protection. The fringe elements and their members generally make references to attacks happening in north Indian states, as the solution to stop beef consumption. This continuous propaganda has given the courage to many to carry out physical assaults .
The Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI) and the Tamil Nadu Untouchability Eradication Front (TNUEF) along with other Muslim organisations have planned for immediate protests against the attack. Vadivel, a district office bearer of DYFI told NewsClick, “the attack by the sangh parivar group was carried out with the intention of killing the youth since he had posted about eating beef. The state government should act immediately and arrest all those involved in the attack under 'The Tamil Nadu Prevention of Dangerous Activities of Bootleggers, Drug Offenders, Goondas, Immoral Traffic Offenders, Forest Offenders, Sand Offenders, Slum-Grabbers and Video Pirates Act, 1982'. We are talking to like minded organisations on conducting a wide spread demonstration condemning this crime.”
The TNUEF and DYFI activists met the victim and his family and have pledged their support. The state government needs to be more proactive in preventing such acts of fundamentalist fringe groups to ensure that no such attacks take place against individuals.