JAIPUR: The intense online hate campaign following the horrific murder of a Muslim labourer from Bengal, and support for his killer, Shambhu Lal, has led to another bout of security clampdown in Rajasthan’s Udaipur and Rajasamand districts.
Mobile internet has been stopped and prohibitory orders, preventing the gathering of large groups, imposed. Sources said it was part of precautionary measures taken after a leader of a fringe group, who has been spewing hate online, gave a “Udaipur chalo” call on Facebook. The man, Updesh Rana, who is from Uttar Pradesh’s Meerut, was taken into custody from near Jaipur this morning.
In his posts, Updesh Rana showed support for the murder and commented against “love jihad” — the term used by right-wing groups accusing Muslim men of drawing Hindu women into relationships, converting them and then recruiting them for terror activities.
Since the murder of 45-year-old Mohammad Afrajul, there has been a huge support online for the killer, Shambhu Lal, who got his 13-year-old nephew to record the murder on cellphone. In the video, he is seen hacking the man to death and setting his body on fire, ranting all the while against “love jihad”.
Once the clampdown on cellphone internet was eased, various right-wing groups started circulating messages that hailed him as an answer to 2001 parliament attack convict Afzal Guru. Others were communal messages spreading hate. One WhatsApp group even promised to arrange financial support for Shambhu Lal’s wife Sita and circulated the details of her bank account, seeking donation.
As the posts spread fear among the minorities, the police arrested two men on Saturday from Mavli, a town in Udaipur district, for spreading hate online. Cases have been filed against four others.
“The situation is peaceful and under control, there is no information of any gatherings. In case they do, they will be arrested immediately. Special police deployment has been done in the district to prevent any vitiating of the atmosphere,” Anand Srivastav, a senior police officer told NDTV.