AhlulBayt News Agency (ABNA): A video has recently gone viral which shows two Indian policemen beating a group of Muslims who were arrested following last Friday’s protests.
The video was first shared by Shalabh Tripathi, an elected official of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). He used the caption “a return gift for the rebels” for the video.
The footage shows a group of Muslim men crying out and begging for mercy while being beaten by the police. They were saying, “No sir, no sir, please, it hurts.”
Wearing a white coat in the video is 24-year-old Saif. He was one of dozens of Muslim men rounded up and detained by police last week.
His family told BBC that he left his home around 5 pm local time last Friday to book a bus ticket for a friend before being arrested by police. They said Saif didn’t even take part in the protest and that he was innocent. So far, party officials have not responded to the footage.
Violent protests broke out in several states across India last Friday over recent inflammatory remarks made by two BJP members, Nupur Sharma and Naveen Jindal about the Prophet Mohammad. Sharma was suspended and Jindal was expelled.
Two teenagers were killed during Muslim protests in eastern India last Friday, after police opened fire in the city of Ranchi, where Hindus also staged counter-protests. It is not clear if the victims were killed by police or rioters.
Police across India have arrested hundreds of protesters for participating in violent demonstrations and destroying property.
In Saharanpur, houses of some of those accused of participating in the protests were demolished by authorities. Police said the homes were built illegally.
For now, the ruling party has asked its members to be cautious when talking about religion on public platforms, but experts say that this controversy seems only to have muddied the waters both domestically and globally for India.