The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) worker Salim Ismail Shah who was assaulted by cow vigilantes on Wednesday at Jalalkheda near Nagpur was carrying beef, says police.

Confirming the development, Shailesh Balkawde, Superintendent of Police (Nagpur rural area) said that the lab report by the forensic department has ‘positively’ identifies the seized meat as beef.

“All four persons involved in the attack have been apprehended by the police. Action will be taken as per law against Ismail Shah,” he added.

Part of BJP minority cell, Salim Ismail Shah was suspected of carrying beef when Moreshwar Tandulkar, along with Ashwin Uike, Rameshwar Taywade and Janardan Chaudhary carried out the attack on him.

Expressing his surprise over the lab reports confirming beef, BJP’s Nagpur (rural) unit president, Rajiv Potdar said that Shah will be removed from the party. Condemning the attack, Potdar also maintained that people should not overlook the authority and refrain from taking the matter into their own hands.

“He (Shah) would be dismissed from the party. Stern action should be taken against him according to the law, but people must not resort to violence in such cases,” he said.

The incident took place when Shaha while returning home was stopped in Bharsingi village by 4 men who assaulted him and left unconscious by the road side, later found by the police.

The attack on the man got highlighted after an onlooker filmed the assault on his phone. The 17-second long video shows four men grabbing the victim by the collar and blowing punches and kicks during broad daylight.

The attack comes days after Maharashtra forensic laboratory is believed to have prepared meat detection kits that can give results of the sample in less than 30 minutes.

Reportedly, the lab promises to give safe results by detecting the protein in the meat sample to determine the result.

The kit is slated to be provided to the police to check if the meat seized is of cow or not, say officials. As of now the kits will be only available in Mumbai, Pune and Nagpur and will be extended to Nashik and Aurangabad in the later stages.

The BJP government in the state has amended provisions to the Maharashtra Animal Preservation (Amendment) Act, 2015, to ban the sale and transport of beef. The state has already implemented a total ban on beef in Maharashtra operational for over years now.

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