ISBN: 9789353282196

Lynch Files: The Forgotten Saga of Victims of Hate Crime


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Mohammed Akhlaq and Rakbar lynched in the name of cow protection.
Chimma, a Dalit, lynched by the mob for entering a Hindu temple.
In the recent years, the cases of mob lynching of Muslims and Dalits have increased to an alarming extent. These cases are discarded and forgotten without any justice served to the victims. The emergence of mobocracy from the roots of Hindutva and gau rakshaks has put India’s secularity and democratic constitution to test.

Lynch Files pieces together the tragic stories of the people at the receiving end of mob violence and looks inside the mind of the lynchers who flout laws with impunity. Further, the book discusses the Supreme Court judgement against lynching and tries to restore faith in the court’s capacity to curb this violence.

A nation that reacted with outrage when Akhlaq was brutalised has become accustomed to repeat performances, with each new killing attracting less and less of criticism; it is like it has seeped into our culture. Often our media treats a lynching incident with the indifference reserved for a local pickpocket or bootlegger nabbed by the police. In some quarters, there is cynicism too: “It is wrong, It should not be done, but they asked for it. Why do they insist on killing cows?” With such thoughts aired freely in drawing room discussions, our insensitivity has touched a new high. And after cricket, the humble cow is the biggest unifying or dividing force in the country today.


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