Welcome to Politics, Shambhu Lal Regar, the Man Who Committed Murder on Camera

Satire

Welcome to Politics, Shambhu Lal Regar, the Man Who Committed Murder on Camera

Illustration: Sushant Ahire

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ost of us remember Shambhu Lal Regar as the wild-eyed animal who hacked with an axe and then burned alive a Muslim labourer on camera in Rajasthan last December. Arrested for a crime that he filmed himself, Regar has spent the intervening days locked up in a Jodhpur jail. But this story does not have a happy ending, because somehow, we live in a world where an unrepentant murderer can be celebrated as a hero. Regar is reportedly set to contest next year’s Lok Sabha elections in Agra for the Uttar Pradesh Navnirman Sena party.

Birds of a feather stick together, so it’s no surprise that the UPNS President Amit Jani is so keen on having Regar be one of the faces of his party. Jani was arrested for threatening to kill Kanhaiya Kumar in 2016, and has also declared, “We want only Hindutva faces to contest elections on our party’s tickets.” The December murder, maintained Regar, was a measure against that old bogey Hindutva is so fond of revisiting: love jihad. With video footage of such a heinous crime, you’d think Regar would be arrested, tried, and sentenced, never to be spoken of again. Sadly, in a cruel and unusual case of “It Happens Only in India”, the murderer has become a folk hero to jackasses across the country.

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