Was forced to make cow slaughter announcement, says temple priest

Ghaziabad: The temple priest, whom police had called a ‘major link’ in the Dadri lynching incident, admitted on Thursday that he had made the announcement on cow slaughter after being pressurised by two villagers.

Speaking to CNN IBN, the priest said that the two youths had forced him to make the announcement that cow was slaughtered and stored in the house of the victim.

Police probing the incident has said that the “trigger” behind the incident was the announcement by a local temple that beef was being consumed by the victim’s family, and said the priest and the two youths were the “major links” in the case.

Also, the FIR lodged in this connection has no mention of beef. Police claimed that the cow slaughtering was just an allegation by the assailants.

“FIR has been lodged under IPC section 147 (Punishment for rioting), 148 (Rioting, armed with deadly weapon), 149 (unlawful assembly), 302(murder), 307 (Attempt to murder), 458(house-trespass or house-breaking), 504 ( Intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace),” an officer said.

Ten persons have been named as accused along with over a hundred unknown assailants. The FIR was lodged on the basis of a complaint lodged by the victim’s family. Seven of the accused were held yesterday.