Pune, May 8, 2019-
At least 40 persons, reportedly members of a cow vigilante group, have been booked in connection with an assault on Hindutva leader and Koregaon-Bhima riots case accused Milind Ekbote, police said here on Thursday.
Ekbote lodged a complaint with the Saswad police about the attack on him in Zendewadi village around 10.30 p.m. on Tuesday.
In his complaint, he said he was beaten up by a large group of around 50 persons near Saswad when he was attending a programme to commemorate the death anniversary of Sadguru Sitaram Maharaj that evening.
However, the local police present on the venue immediately intervened and prevented the situation from escalating.
The accused in the assault are reported to be “gau-rakshaks” (cow vigilantes) and the motive is said to be Ekbote’s allegations of corruption against some of them, including his former associate, Pandit Modak.
Though a few of the assailants have been identified, police have yet to make any arrests, an official said.
Ekbote, who is president of the right-wing Samasta Hindu Aghadi, is an accused in the January 1, 2018 Koregaon-Bhima caste riots for allegedly inciting violence, atrocities against Dalits and other charges.
The caste riots left one youth dead and 30 others including 10 policemen injured during the 200th anniversary of the Koregaon-Bhima war between a small British force comprising mostly Dalits which vanquished the huge army of the Peshwa Bajirao II on January 1, 1818. (Agency)