‘Pehlu Khan Still Guilty Today,’ Says Lawyer of the Six Acquitted
“Pehlu Khan is guilty even today. The government hasn't given him a clean chit. Now, it has issued orders to re-investigate the matter (cow smuggling case). When it happens, we will see.”
Hukum Chand Sharma, the lawyer representing the six accused who were acquitted on 14 August, speaks to The Quint.
You said the Pehlu Khan verdict has been hyped. Explain?
They created a hype around the verdict when there was no need to. For this case, the Collector’s office was open and the judgment came. Before we even got a copy the Collector started issuing orders to appeal the verdict. What was the hurry? You have 90 days to file an appeal. Why is the government so worked up?
People have been angry as despite video evidence all accused have been acquitted in the case.
But the accused weren’t the ones who beat them. They weren’t present there. On what basis can you arrest them? Now, who beat them and who didn’t... We can’t talk
for anyone else. We can just talk about these six.
Are the six who have been acquitted from right-wing organisations?
That’s not true. They aren’t connected to any right-wing organisations. And about the six who were named by Pehlu Khan, I cannot comment on them as I didn’t represent them.
You’ve mentioned that the Pehlu Khan lynching case has been politicised. Explain?
To garner votes, politicians are highlighting this case even when that was never the situation here. Here, Hindus and Muslims don’t fight. Some political leaders are trying to earn political mileage from the issue... They’ve highlighted the case to do so.
Former PM Indira Gandhi was assassinated as well as Rajiv Gandhi. Regarding them even, these many questions weren’t raised in the state Assembly or Parliament like they have for the cow smuggler Pehlu Khan against whom a charge sheet has been filed. Questions have been raised in the Lok Sabha and even in the Rajasthan government.
The criticism is that the police investigation was biased as a BJP government was in power when the charge sheet was filed. Comment?
No, this isn’t a valid argument. The investigation was conducted by senior officers and only then was the charge sheet submitted. What went on on the inside we don’t know but the investigation wasn’t compromised because the BJP government is in power.
(Hi there! We will be continuing our news service on WhatsApp. Meanwhile, stay tuned to our Telegram channel here.)