Two Muslim women have been beaten up at a railway station in central India on suspicion of carrying beef, an offence in many parts of the Hindu-majority country, police said Wednesday.
The meat the women were carrying has since turned out to be buffalo, but police in Madhya Pradesh state said they were attacked on Tuesday at a busy station, apparently after a group of vigilantes raised suspicions.
Video footage broadcast on local television channels showed a group of women slapping, kicking and punching the two as a large crowd gathered.
In the video filmed by one of the spectators, policemen are seen making feeble attempts to control the crowd.
The two women were subsequently arrested on suspicion of carrying beef.
Tests found it was actually buffalo, and they now face the lesser charge of carrying commercial quantities of meat without a licence.
Cows are revered by Hindus and slaughtering them is illegal in most Indian states.