The Palghar lynchings were a religious hate crime
The lynchings, given that they were committed against Hindu priests, are thought by some to be a religious hate crime.
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Soon after the incident, rumours began to spread on Twitter that the crime was religion-related and the mob was predominantly Muslim. These claims were based on the belief that Bengali could be heard being spoken in the background of videos taken of the incident, as well as claiming the phrase "maar Shoaib maar" ("hit Shoaib hit"), Shoaib being a predominantly Muslim name.
There is no proof whatsoever that the lynching was in any way religiously motivated. That this is the case is an entirely falsified rumour, spread by social media. None of the 101 people arrested in connection with the case are Muslim. The area where the lynching happened is a tribal one, with no Islamic population. What was interpreted in the video as someone saying Shoaib was actually someone saying oye bas (please stop). Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray said, "I want to tell those who are trying to spread fire, please don’t to it. It was not a Hindu-Muslim issue. It was caused by some confusion and we are not going to spare any accused irrespective of caste, creed or religion. Nobody should try to give it religious colour”.
Rejecting the premises