Around 50 cow vigilantes targeted officials of the Tamil Nadu government transporting cows from Jaisalmer to their state, pelted stones at a truck and blocked National Highway 15 on suspicion of cattle smuggling in Rajasthan's Barmer district, police said on Monday.
Four persons have been arrested and action against seven policemen including a police inspector has been taken for allegedly not taking the matter seriously and reaching the spot on Sunday night, a senior police official said.
The officials of the Animal Husbandry Department of Tamil Nadu government had purchased 50 cows and calves from Jaisalmer and were transporting them in five trucks with NOC and all required papers and permission from authorities and police when the cow vigilantes attacked them.
"The accused tried to beat the officials.They also tried to set a truck on fire but police reached the spot and prevented them. The officials, drives and cleaners were rescued and taken to local police station.
"In the meanwhile, several people gathered there and blocked National Highway 15,” said SP, Barmer, Gagandeep Singla.
The officials had purchased the cows of a good quality breed from different places in Jaisalmer. They had NOC and permission from the SDM and local police station to transport the cows.
"The accused pelted stones at trucks and damaged one truck. The cows were rescued and taken to a local cow shelter for the time being," he said.
A case against 50 persons has been registered for voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from duty and for assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty and also under the National Highway Act.
Chainaram, Kamlesh, Vikram and Jaswant have been arrested in the matter on Monday.
"The officials informed the police station immediately and sought help but the policemen reached late. On this dereliction, the SHO of Sadar Police Station and six other policemen were shunted to police lines today," he said.
SHO Jairam, Sub Inspector Dhruv Prasad, Assistant Sub Inspector Majid and two head constables and as many head constables were shunted to police lines, the SP said.