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US panel condemns lynching in Jharkhand, Christian man was attacked-killed by 'cow vigilantes'

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NEW DELHI: The United States' panel on religious freedom has condemned the killing of a Christian man by self-styled cow vigilantes in Jharkhand. 

The head of USCIRF, a federal government commission, has expressed condemnation over the murder of Kalantus Barla, who was attacked in Khunti, nearly 50 km from state capital Ranchi, in Jharkhand. 

USCIRF head Tony Perkins has said that Indian government must take steps to prosecute the killers. In a statement, USCIRF has urged government to stop such killings in future. 

Barla and two others--Philip and Fagu, were accused of carving out 'banned meat' and selling it. The mob attacked and brutally thrashed them. Barla got critically injured and later died in the hospital. Philip and Fagu also sustained multiple injuries. 

Over 15 persons have been booked in this case, five of them arrested so far. Earlier, Prakash Lakra, also a tribal Christian, was killed in Gumla in the state. Besides, Tabrez Ansari was lynched in Jharkhand this year. In fact, such incidents have occurred frequently in the state. 

Jharkhand has gained notoriety for most incidents of lynchings in the country. In fact, in the case of Tabrez Ansari, the police had withdrawn murder charges, until the public outcry forced it to again add the sections. The USCIRF is a US government panel and its commissioners are appointed by the President and the leadership of both the major parties in the Senate and House of Representatives.