Haryana driver set on fire, dies; Relatives accuse 4 men part of farmers’ protest

Mukesh reportedly told his brother and a villager that he had been drinking with four men who claimed to be part of the farmers' protest and they set him on fire.

A 40-year-old resident of Kasar village in Haryana’s Jhajjar district succumbed to burn injuries in the wee hours of Thursday and his relatives alleged that he was set on fire by four men who are part of the farmers’ protest at the Tikri border.

The victim has been identified as Mukesh. According to police officials, an FIR has been registered against four men.

“The victim’s family has alleged that four people set him on fire after sprinkling petrol or diesel. One accused has been identified as Krishan from Jind,” said Pawan Kumar, DSP (Bahadurgarh).

“Right now, it is unclear what the issue was and whether the accused and the victim knew each other from before. We are conducting further investigations,” he said.

Residents of Mukesh’s village said he was a bus driver. He had gone out for a walk at around 6 pm on Wednesday.

“Mukesh’s brother Madan called me and asked to come to the bypass. When I reached there, Mukesh had already been set on fire. We called an ambulance and took him to the civil hospital. In the ambulance, he told us that he had been drinking with four men who had told him they were part of the farmers’ movement. He said they set him on fire using a matchstick, Mukesh succumbed to injuries at around 2.30 am,” Toni Kumar, the village sarpanch, said.

“As far as we know, Mukesh had not met these people before. We do not know why they did this. We do not think farmers will do such a thing. He was the only earning member of his family. How will his wife and child manage now? The government must give them compensation,” he said.

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