Casting serious doubts on the latest reports of a Muzzafarnagar imam being forced to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’ by around a dozen youngsters, Baghpat Superintendent of Police Shalesh Kumar Pandey, under whom the investigation is taking place, has told Opindia that no such allegations were made in the initial FIR.
The imam, Imlaq-Ur-Rehman, along with his supporters had filed the initial FIR at the Muzzafarnagar police station but was later informed that the crime was in the purview of Baghpat police station. Hence, a second FIR was filed by the imam at the Baghpat police station later.
Pandey told Opindia that there was no mention of any forced ‘Jai Shri Ram’ chants or incident of beard-pulling in the first FIR filed in Muzaffarnagar. These allegations are only mentioned in the second FIR, which Pandey said could have been filed under influence of people who wanted to give the incident a communal colour.
Pandey also said that he had confirmed from a video recorded while filing the FIR at Muzzafarnagar that the imam had made no such allegations then, and that the matter seemed to be a petty brawl being ballooned by the media.
He also rubbished media reports that 12 people have been booked for the assault, saying that the investigation is ongoing with 2-3 suspects under the radar. No one has been booked in relation to the case yet.