Four youth were beaten up at Murshidabad’s Beldanga on Saturday night after they protested against extortionists.
Those extortionists branded them as goat thieves and started to beat them up there.
They were beaten up before the police team reached there to rescue those four youth. The officers tried to shift those youth to a different location, but failed to tame public rage. The extortionists managed to convince the public that they were goat thieves and they should not be spared.
But police later learnt that those four youth were innocent. They only tried to restrict some local extortionists from taking money from them.
However, local people snatched those youth from police van and started to beat them up again. Police finally managed to rescue those youth and they were sent to a local hospital.
“The police officers gave their best effort to save those youth from mob fury. The policemen really had a tough time there,” an eye witness said.
Police learnt that at least 60-70 goats were stolen from the village in the recent past which made the local president angry.
“The youth were trying to carry those goats on a battery driven rickshaw. In the meantime, some extortionists came there. They demanded money from those youth. But the youth refused to give away their hard earned money to them,” said a police officer.
“Those extortionists raised their voices saying that those youth were goat thieves. They were escaping with those goats. The local people stopped them to ask questions. They could not reply those questions satisfactorily in that moment. Then they were taken to a field in the middle of the village. At least 50 people started to beat those youth with wickets and bamboo sticks,” the eye witness added.
“We’ll arrest those accused extortionists. A probe has been initiated,” said an investigating officer.