The locals accused the men of first slaughtering the buffalo, and then skinning it. The police said this is the complaint that had reached them yesterday afternoon when they rushed to the city's Anchaltaal locality.
"We got information that a buffalo was being slaughtered in the home of someone called Kali Baghel. We reached there and have arrested 5 people," police officer Pankaj Shrivastava said. The officer said the crowd that had gathered was aggressive but the police officers managed to control the situation.
That they were slaughtering the buffalo is far from true, insist relatives of dairy owner Kali Baghel. They point that one of his buffaloes had died due to natural causes and the men were only trying to skin the buffalo to recoup some of their losses to sell its hide. Mr Shrivastava said they would probe the case.
"How else do you treat such people... they have to be beaten up till the slaughter does not end completely," said Vinay, one of the men who had led the assault. Reports indicated many people who had led the attack weren't from the area, but came after hearing about rumours of cow slaughter.