Jharkhand police has launched a manhunt for at least one more person accused in the lynching of a man in Bokaro district, a senior police official said here on Thursday.
Five persons of the same family, including a woman, were arrested for allegedly thrashing two men mercilessly with sticks in the early hours of Wednesday suspecting that they were stealing a truck battery.
The vigilantes killed one of the two men on the spot and left another seriously injured, he said.
The condition of the injured person is stable and he is now out of danger, Bokaro district superintendent of police P Murugan said.
He is being treated at a hospital in Bermo sub-division, the SP said.
We are searching for one or two more persons who were involved in the incident. All the five arrested accused belong to the same family, Murugan said.
The man who was killed has been identified as Mukhtar Ansari and the one injured as Akhtar Ansari, he said.
Assistant superintendent of police Anjani Anjana said the incident is not a communal one as only one family was involved in the crime.
She said that the two victims were seen lying on the roadside with their hands and legs tied by some persons who had gone out for morning walk.
They informed the police, who sent the injured person to a hospital and the body for post-mortem, she said.
The arrested said during interrogation that the family was keeping vigil in the nights since the theft of a motor pump from their house a week ago. On the intervening night of Tuesday and Wednesday when they saw the two persons fleeing with the truck battery, the family members caught them and beat them with sticks, Anjan said.
The five were arrested after an FIR was filed against them for murder, attempt to murder and conspiracy under sections of the Indian Penal Code.
They were produced before a local court on Wednesday and were remanded to judicial custody for 14 days, the police said.
A number of lynchings have been reported from Jharkhand this year and opposition parties had even said that state had become a lynching factory.
Chief Minister Raghubar Das had urged the people to refrain from taking law into their hands.
Wednesday's lynching follows the brutal assault of Tabrez Ansari by a mob on June 17 suspecting him of trying to steal a motorcycle in Seraikela-Kharsawan district. He had succumbed to his injuries five days later and a video had showed that he was purportedly made to chant Jai Shri Ram and Jai Hanuman.
In Gumla district four elderly tribals were lynched in July by a mob over suspicion that they were practising witchcraft.
On August 1, villagers lynched a man on theft charges at Chihudia village in Dumka district.
On October 6, a labourer was beaten to death in Koderma town by unidentified people who suspected that he was a thief.
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