Muslim Cleric Arrested In Bharuch For Post On Animal Sacrifice 

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Muslim Cleric Arrested In Bharuch For Post On Animal Sacrifice 

| Updated: June 17, 2024 10:12

The cleric included ‘cow’ in the animal sacrifice list in a social media post

A 54-year-old Muslim cleric was arrested at Amod in Bharuch on Sunday for a social media post that could potentially “breach communal peace” ahead of Monday’s Eid-ul-Adha. The arrest is to preventive any untoward incident, according to police sources.  

The Bharuch district police has booked the accused, Maulvi Abdul Rahim Rathod, who is a cleric of Daru Uloom Barkat-e-Khwaja, for “promoting enmity” after his social media post describing the Islamic “ritualistic procedure” for animal sacrifice listed the cow among other slaughter animals such as camels and buffaloes. 

Notably, the cleric was out on bail after his arrest in a 2022 case for alleged conversion of tribals in the district.

Provocative’ post

The post put up by the cleric was instigating in nature as it explicitly mentioned cow slaughter, the sources said. Action was taken before a situation could arise. In fact, the cleric put up an apology after posting the first message as he was aware that the police were coming after him. 

He was arrested based on an FIR lodged by Amod Police under IPC Sections 153(A) (promoting enmity between different groups), [295(A)] (deliberate and malicious acts, that are intended to outrage religious feelings) and 504 (intentional insult to provoke breach of peace) as well as IT Act. 

The district police said the arrest was made as a ‘preventive measure’ to avert an untoward law and order situation ahead of the approaching festivals, including the Rath Yatra, which will be held in the first week of July.

While the case has been lodged at Amod police station, the cleric has been handed over to the Special Operations Group (SOG) for further investigation to “ascertain if he was encouraged or assisted by other entities to make the post”.

The police said Rathod was booked in 2022 under the Gujarat Freedom of Religion Act. The accused has a history of indulging in communally sensitive acts, they said.  

The district police said it has upped its vigilance on transport of cattle, especially cows meant for slaughter. It filed 58 cases in 2023-24 with 171 arrests and rescued 707 cattle that were transported for illegal slaughter.

The police is keeping a 24×7 watch on cyberspace with no tolerance for any attempts that breach peace.

Also Read: All Municipal Corporations To be Probed: Gujarat HC 

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