Indian police detain 3 in beating death of Muslim man

Hindu Yuva Vahini members pose inside the vigilante group's office in the city of Unnao India

Indian police said Thursday they have arrested three suspects in the murder of a 60-year-old Muslim man lynched in apparent revenge after a fellow Muslim eloped with a local Hindu woman.

After the incident, tension is prevailing in the village.

"In the complaint we have written that the members are of the Hindu Yuva vahini". Sohi is some 20 kms from the town of Khurja in Uttar Pradesh's Bulandshahr district, separated from it by large tracts of mango orchards and fields of wheat, inhabited by a population of around 2,000 - mostly Hindu, except for four Muslim families, including the Ahmads.

Ghulam's family members have alleged that members of Hindu Yuva Vahini (HYV) - a pro-Hindutva outfit founded by Yogi Adityanath in 2002 - are behind the incident.

The family of Ghulam Mohammad says his only fault was living next-door to a young man who had eloped with a girl from another community.

The issue has become a flashpoint for nationalists in recent years, with Hindu extremists raising fears of "love jihad" - claims that Muslim boys were attempting to seduce and elope with Hindu girls across the country to convert them.

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Authorities said they were still searching for the ringleaders of a six-strong Hindu gang that beat Ghulam Mohammad to death.

The group allegedly arrived when the girl's family complained that the police had not taken action in the matter. He was allegedly attacked in an orchard by a group of men soon after the elopement.

Vivek Singh, the man in charge of the group's operations in Meerut told the Hindu, "Seven persons reportedly attacked the deceased but not a single person belonged to the Hindu Yuva Vahini".

The release said a case of murder has been registered against Gajendra and five to six unknown persons under various sections of the IPC.

Those arrested are Hunny Raghav, Pulkit and Lalit but the main accused, Gavender, is still at large. Bulandshahr Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Muniraj G said the police were "trying to verify if Ghulam Mohammad's murder has any connection to the case of abduction of a girl lodged against Yusuf of Sohi village".

Evidence pointed to involvement of Singh and others, police said.

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