11 more accused in Palghar sadhu lynching test COVID-19 positive
Mumbai: Taking the police by shock, at least 11 accused arrested in connection with the Palghar lynching case tested COVID-19 positive on Tuesday (June 16).
According to reports, the accused were due to be shifted soon from Wada Police Station lockup to a temporary jail being set up by the district collectorate, for which COVID-19 tests were carried out on all at this police station. On Tuesday, the test reports of 11 have come positive.
An official told IANS they are isolated at the COVID Care Hospital in Posheri, Wada, but soon they will be shifted to the Prisoners Isolation Ward in Palghar Rural Hospital, as advised by the local medical authorities.
It is not clear whether any police or security personnel who may have come in contact with the accused are infected, even as full precautions are exercised at the police station.
One accused had tested COVID-19 positive in the month of May.
The 12 afflicted are among around 160 people arrested in connection with the mob-lynching of two seers and their driver in a remote area of palghar. Those arrested include 9 minors and several local politicians.
On the night of April 16, the sadhus and their driver were attacked,brutally thrashed and killed by an angry mob of around 350 villagers which mistook them for kidnappers near Gadchinchale village.
The incident sparked a nationwide political row which prompted the Maharashtra government to effect a major shakeup in the local police, including shunting out Superintendent of Police Gaurav Singh and replacing him with senior IPS officer D.T. Shinde.
Simultaneously, Home Minister Anil Deshmukh handed over the triple-lynching probe to the state CID, suspended five police officials and transferred 35 police constables to different police stations within the district.