Bihar police arrest 8-year-old Muslim boy, demand money to release him

Following the anti-Muslim violence in Barhariya, a city in Bihar’s Siwan district on Thursday, police arrested a dozens of Muslim men from a local mosque for inciting violence, including an 8-year-old boy.

Police arrested 70-years-old Mohammad Yasin and his eight-year-old grandson, while their family maintains that both are innocent. Yasin had recently undergone two surgery and had other health ailments.

According to their family, they were booked for incitement of violence and kept in custody.

The boy’s brother Azhar told Maktoob, “My younger brother was kept in a private ward and my family was initially not allowed to meet him. When my mother saw him he was handcuffed and scared. He was so terrified that he was unable to recognize his own mother. The child was just crying to go back home.”

They were produced in court allegedly with a rope tied around their waist. The boy’s family has presented the child’s birth certificate but the police officials have been allegedly demanding money for his release.

Violence broke out in the Muslim-dominated streets of Barhariya during the Mahavir Akhara rally. The Hindu mob was caught on camera chanting Islamophobic slogans and playing obscene songs while entering the Muslim locality. Men were armed with swords and sticks.

The provocation led to a confrontation between the two groups. Later Muslim houses were targets of stone pelting and vandalism.