A 22-year-old Muslim man named Mohammad Ishaq was lynched in New Delhi’s Sundar Nagri area on suspicion of stealing a ritualistic offering known as “prasad.” The incident occurred during a prayer event organized by the local Hindu community to observe the Ganesh Chaturthi festival. Ishaq was tied to an iron pole with a leather belt and brutally beaten by a mob. He later succumbed to his injuries at his home.
Ishaq’s family stated that he was mentally challenged and had not caused harm to anyone. The police were informed about the incident after Ishaq’s passing and have since registered a case of murder, arresting six individuals. A video of the assault went viral on social media, prompting public outcry and demands for justice.
The incident highlights a concerning trend of assaults and mob lynchings, particularly targeting Muslims, in India. Critics argue that such incidents have increased since the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) came to power in 2014, although the government denies these allegations. Many of these attacks stem from suspicions related to cow slaughter, which is considered sacred by some Hindus.
Muslim student activist Sharjeel Usmani expressed concern over the lynching, stating that it reflects a disturbing shift in how a section of Hindu society practices their religion. Ishaq’s family, who are seeking justice for their son’s killing, expressed satisfaction with the police’s initial actions but called for the perpetrators to face the same fate.
As of now, no politicians have visited the grieving family, according to a neighbor named Bano. The family believes that their Muslim identity may be a factor in the lack of support they receive.