Over 4,000 people broke into a high-security prison in India and dragged an alleged rapist into the street. They proceeded to beat to death the 35-year-old suspect.
The mob managed to overpower the security officials at the prison to get their hands on Syed Farid Kahn, an illegal immigrant from Bangladesh. He was accused of raping a 20-year-old Naga woman numerous times in February.
“A mob of around 4,000 people stormed the central jail after breaking two gates and took the accused out of the jail and paraded him naked to the city tower in the heart of Dimapur town before we could rescue him from the mob,” stated district police chief Meren Jamir. “The body was retrieved from the mob after police fired in the air to disperse them.”
Witnesses claimed the mob took Kahn out of the jail, stripped him naked, and dragged him through the streets where they proceeded to beat him to death. They planned on hanging him, but he succumbed to his injuries before the mob executed the plan. They subsequently hung his dead body from a clock tower. Pictures show the mob took pictures of him with their cell phones. One member of the mob was also killed in the melee.
“A 25-year-old youth suspected to be part of the mob was injured in police firing, who later succumbed to his injuries at the hospital,” said Jamir.
After he died, the mob also torched ten vehicles, threw stones, and vandalized stores owned by non-Nagas. The attacks forced the officials in Dimapur to impose a curfew. Jamir told the media his police are “trying to bring the situation under control.” However, the government in Nagaland state suspended three officials, including “the city’s police superintendent and the jail’s warden.” Amnesty International demanded an investigation into Kahn’s death.
“This is a serious lapse in the criminal justice system and the Nagaland government must ensure that every person who was part of the mob is brought to justice,” said Shemeer Babu, the program director of Amnesty International India. “Failure to do so will send the message that anyone can commit outrageous abuses and attempt to justify them as an expression of public anger.”
Tensions between the native Nagas and immigrant Muslims from Bangladesh rose in the past years. The Nagas, who are predominantly Christian, accused the Muslims “of illegally settling on their land and eating their resources.”