Shaista, the 21-year-old daughter of Mohammed Akhlaque, 52, has been named a prime eyewitness to the September 28 lynching of her father by a mob at their home in Dadri. Her statement, recorded before a magistrate last month, is part of the chargesheet police submitted in court on Wednesday. A copy of the statement, recorded in Hindi, is with The Telegraph and is reproduced below:
On the night of September 28, 2015, we were preparing to go to bed after having offered namaz and having had our dinner. At home, my Papa, brother Danish, my Mummy Ikraman, grandmother Asgariand I were there. It was around 10.15-10.30 at night.
"In our village, an announcement was made from the temple at the chowk that someone has slaughtered a cow at the big transformer, everyone should gather there. Just then, outside our house, a lot of people started hurling filthy abuses at my Papaji and Bhaiya.
Breaking down our door and jumping from the adjacent wall of my uncle's house, they entered our house. Fifteen-twenty men entered. At that time, I, my brother Danish and Papaji were upstairs. Mummy and Dadi were downstairs. Mummy and Dadi asked what the matter was. From upstairs, Papa also asked. Seeing Papaji those people came up.
Shivam s/o Mukesh, Sandeep s/o Omvir, Dr Arun @ Mannu, s/o Rajpal, Saurabh, Gaurav s/o Dheeraj, Vishal s/o Sanjay Rana, Shriram, Hariom s/o Rajaram, Puneet s/o Dharamvir, Rupendra s/o Pramod Fauji, Sachin, Vivek, s/o Om, Bhim s/o Chhuttan, Hariom s/o Roop Singh, Sonu @ Dhammu s/o Dharmvir, Ravin s/o Ranvir were there.
Among them Vivek had a rod in his hand, the rest had lathis. Other than them, there were some other people too whom I do not know.
I, my brother and my father hid in a room upstairs to save our lives but they broke down the door. Then we hid in the inner room. That room has household items, the fridge etc. The door does not have a bolt from inside, so the three of us pushed the door to keep it closed. The mob broke down that door too and they started beating my Papa and brother.
We kept crying and screaming, asking what the matter was, why are you beating. They said: "You have slaughtered a cow, we will not spare you alive. My mother, grandmother and I tried to intervene, we too were kicked, punched and pushed. These people kept hitting Papaji and Bhaiya mercilessly.
Taking Danish for dead, they left him and dragged Papaji out. On the way out, they sprinkled kerosene on the house. The kerosene was stored at home. They were saying that if you inform the police, we will kill you too.
After the police came, we took Bhaiya to Kailash Hospital. After reaching there, we learnt that our Papaji is also in the same hospital. He is dead.
We had not slaughtered a cow.
The mob that entered our house, they had taken out the meat from the fridge in our house. That was goat's meat that our relatives had given us. Those people took that meat away. I had told the police the names of all the people and the details of the incident. There is nothing more to say."
The Telegraph, Kolkata