Villagers set afire 15 trucks ferrying cattle

Gurgaon, Aug 30 (IANS) A mob Friday torched 15 trucks carrying cows in the Pataudi area, near here, after emptying them of the cattle, police said.

Villagers had earlier in the day taken into custody at least 25 trucks carrying cows that were being taken from Chandigarh to Uttar Pradesh.

The truck drivers and their helpers managed to escape the wrath of the mob.

"A total of 25 trucks carrying 195 stray cows and caught by the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC) were on their way to Shree Mata Ji Gaushala at Barsana in Mathura district of Uttar Pradesh," said police.

"Some trucks were caught in a traffic jam at Jhajjar. When people came to know that these were ferrying cows, rumour spread that the animals were being taken to slaughter houses," Deputy Commissioner of Police (south) Rahul Sharma told IANS.

"We are counting the total numbers of trucks set afire. As of now, nine were torched near Khandewla village while six were burnt near Jatoli," Sharma said.

Some cows were also found dead in the trucks.

"An official order from MCC said a team, headed by Chief Sanitary Officer Pratap Singh, and comprising three sub-inspectors Karamvir Singh, Mohender Pathak and Harpreet Singh, was to supervise the transportation of the cattle," said a police officer.

Three police Gypsies and a Bolero were on escort duty.

"We are investigating how many Gypsies were with the convoy," the officer said.

Heavy police reinforcements were deployed in the tense area.

A mahapanchayat (a grand village council), representing 360 villages Aug 28 had given 72 hours' deadline for arresting the killers of anti-cattle slaughter activist Vikrant Yadav, killed Aug 25 besides demanding martyr status for him.


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