Protests against the visit of Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya to Lakhimpur Kheri district on October 3 took a grim turn with farmers groups alleging that at least four farmers were killed and several injured after they were deliberately run over by a car that was part of the convoy of Union Minister of State for Home Affairs and BJP MP Ajay Kumar Mishra. Four persons in the Minister’s convoy were killed in violence that followed.
Several opposition leaders, including Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, Akhilesh Yadav, Satish Chandra Mishra, and Sanjay Singh were detained in separate incidents in a bid to prevent them from meeting the victims' families.
The Uttar Pradesh government has ordered a probe into the violence, by a retired High Court judge.
Here are the latest developments :
'Killing Raj' going on in U.P., claims Mamata Banerjee
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday attacked BJP governments at the Centre and Uttar Pradesh over the death of farmers during a protest , claiming that "autocracy" prevails in the country and "killing Raj" is going on in that State.
Eight people were killed - four farmers were allegedly run over and four people in a convoy of BJP workers who were lynched - on Sunday as violence erupted during a farmers' protest in Lakhimpur Kheri district in Uttar Pradesh.
Congress seeks dismissal of MoS Ajay Mishra, arrest of his son
The Congress on Monday demanded the immediate dismissal of Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra and the arrest of his son who has been named in an FIR by the Uttar Pradesh Police after the death of eight people, including four farmers in violent clashes in Lakhimpur Kheri.
The party also demanded enhanced compensation of Rs 1 crore for each of the farmers killed and sought immediate release of Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who the leaders alleged has been illegally detained by the Uttar Pradesh Police.
The Congress said it would hold protests outside the offices of all district magistrates across the country on Tuesday to protest against the incident. The Congress leaders protested outside UP Bhawan in the national capital and staged agitations elsewhere in the nation.
Farmers not involved in violence, people from political parties behind it: BKS
Seeking the harshest punishment for those involved in the violence in Lakhimpur Kheri in Uttar Pradesh, the RSS-affiliated farmer union BKS on Monday said people from various political parties, and not farmers, were behind it.
Describing the incident as "unfortunate", the Bharatiya Kisan Sangh (BKS) in a statement said, "The people involved in the incident were not farmers, they belonged to various political parties. The incident was carried out using leftist methods. People were mercilessly beaten to death with sticks, something farmers cannot do."
The BKS claimed that the way the people took the law into their own hands and committed murders in public shows that they were part of some professional gangs.
Seeking the harshest punishment for those involved in such acts, it said that justice should be done to the families of the deceased by conducting an impartial inquiry into this heinous incident at the earliest.
Yogendra Yadav for Supreme Court-monitored SIT into Lakhimpur violence
Social activist and Jai Kisan Andolan founder Yogendra Yadav on Monday demanded immediate dismissal of Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra from the Union Cabinet and a probe by Supreme Court-monitored Special Investigation Team into Sunday’s violence in Lakhimpur district of Uttar Pradesh.
“We have seen how the ruling party has resorted to violence upon being terrified by the farmer stir in Lakhimpur where son of MoS of Home ran over protesting farmers. Our main demand is removal of Mr. Mishra for delivering provocative speech. He does not have the moral right to continue as Union MoS for Home for spreading violence,” said Mr. Yadav who was here to attend a Odia daily’s foundation day celebration.
Purported video of Union Minister warning farmers surfaces
A purported video of Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Kumar Mishra in which he is heard warning agitating farmers that he would discipline them in "two minutes" appears to have angered farmers even before Sunday's violent clashes in Lakhimpur Kheri.
"Face me, it will take just two minutes to discipline you fellows," the two-time BJP MP from Kheri is heard allegedly saying in the video.
"I am not only a minister or a MP and MLA...People who know me even before I became a Parliamentarian know that I never run away from taking a challenge. The day I accept the challenge you all have to leave not only Palia (a place) but Lakhimpur itself," he is heard saying in the video.
Sources said PTI Mr. Mishra's speech came in the backdrop of some farmers showing him black flags in Palia locality in his Kheri Parliamentary constituency where he had gone to address a public meeting there late last month.
Protests in Hassan and Shivamogga
Farmers staged protests in Hassan and Shivamogga on October 4 condemning the killing of farmers when a vehicle in the convoy of a Union Minister ran over them at Lakhimpur in Uttar Pradesh. Members of Karnataka Rajya Raita Sangha, Karnataka Pranta Raitha Sangha and Left parties participated in the protests under the banner of Samyukta Kissan Morcha.
In Hassan, farmers staged a dharna in front of the Hemavati statue raising slogans against the Centre and the Uttar Pradesh government. The demanded action against Union Minister Ajay Mishra and all those involved in the incident.
BJP, govt have 'no business to not allow' political leaders to visit Lakhimpur Kheri: CPI(M)
Hitting out at the BJP and Uttar Pradesh government, CPI(M) said leaders cannot be disallowed from meeting the victims.
"The BJP and Modi government have no business to not allow political parties to reach victims of the barbarism inflicted on farmers yesterday. Strongly condemn this draconian throttling of democracy," CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury said in a tweet.
"The sacrifice of our brave and determined farmers will not be allowed to go in vain. Our respects to those who have paid with their lives," he added.
Priyanka Gandhi on 'hunger strike' following detention
Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra sat on a hunger strike on Monday after being detained in Uttar Pradesh's Sitapur while she was en route to Lakhimpur Kheri, her party said.
"Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi has been arrested. She is on hunger strike. Congressmen are protesting. Government will have to bow to our demands. Voice for justice will be raised with more strength," the UP Congress said in a tweet.
In a video released by the party, Gandhi was seen sweeping the floor of a room where she was apparently kept.
Protests in Delhi
Several political parties took to streets in the National Capital to protest against the killing of farmers in Lakhimpur Kheri.
Govt uses iron fist against its own people but welcomes Chinese troops: Mehbooba
In an apparent reference to the violence in Uttar Pradesh's Lakhimpur Kheri, PDP president Mehbooba Mufti alleged that imposing Section 144 wherever human rights and dignity have trampled upon has emerged as the Centre's preferred approach.
approach. This government shows no hesitation in using an iron fist with its own people but welcomes Chinese troops with open arms," the PDP chief wrote on Twitter.
"One can't even compare the oppression unleashed in J&K since 2019 but the common denominators are obvious. What started in J&K was sadly met with an air of indifference & has now engulfed the entire country. When will we speak up?" she asked.
Congress demands dismissal of MoS Ajay Mishra
The Congress on Monday demanded the immediate dismissal of Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra and the arrest of his son who has been named in the FIR by Uttar Pradesh Police after the death of eight persons including four farmers in violent clashes in Lakhimpur Kheri.
The party also demanded the immediate release of Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who they alleged has been illegally detained by the Uttar Pradesh Police.
"Chief Minister of Punjab Charanjit Singh Channi and Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel should also be allowed to visit the affected families," Congress leader Rajeev Shukla said. - PTI
When stir turns violent ‘nobody takes responsibility’, says SC
The Supreme Court on Monday lashed out at farmers’ organisations for continuing with the protests against the Centre’s agricultural laws, saying when the agitation snowballed into violence as in Uttar Pradesh’s Lakhimpur Kheri, where eight people were killed, “nobody takes responsibility”.
“When such incidents happen, causing deaths, loss to property and damage, nobody takes responsibility,” Justice A.M. Khanwilkar observed.
Attorney General K.K. Venugopal described the Lakhimpur Kheri violence on Sunday an “unfortunate incident”. The top law officer for the government said the court should make it very clear that protests should not continue when the challenge against the farm laws were in the highest court of the country.
“No more unfortunate incidents like this should take place... The protests must stop,” Mr. Venugopal, supported by Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, submitted.
“But how can there be protests when the matter is sub judice here? Why are there protests when the laws have been kept in abeyance? It is intriguing, there is no Act in place at the moment. The Act is stayed. The government has assured it will not give effect to it... So what is this protest for,” Justice Khanwilkar, flanked by Justice C.T. Ravikumar on the Bench, asked Kisan Mahapanchayat, a farmers’ organisation.
CM Channi wants to visit Lakhimpur Kheri, Punjab govt writes to UP
The Punjab civil aviation department urged the Uttar Pradesh government to allow Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi's chopper to land so that he can visit Lakhimpur Kheri.
"As you are aware that due to the situation arising out of the incident and deaths of peacefully protesting farmers in Lakhimpur Kheri of Uttar Pradesh, the chief minister wants to visit the families concerned to be with them in this hour of grief," the director of the Department of Civil Aviation, Punjab, wrote to UP Additional Chief Secretary, Home, Awanish Kumar Awasthi.
"It is requested that permission may be granted for landing and taking off (of) the chopper of CM. It is also requested that adequate arrangements may be made so that the chief minister may meet with concerned families," it added. - PTI
UP govt announces compensation
The Uttar Pradesh government has announcement compensation for the victims of Lakhimpur Kheri violence. Rs. 45 lakh will be paid as compensation and jobs will be given to family members of four farmers killed on Sunday. The government will give Rs 10 lakh to those injured in the violence.
The State government has also announced that a retired High Court judge will probe the incident.
Traffic headed from Delhi to Ghaziabad diverted briefly due to Ghazipur border closure
The Delhi Traffic Police on Monday briefly diverted traffic headed towards the Ghazipur border due to the closure of National Highways 9 and 24 by the Ghaziabad police in view of the Lakhimpur Kheri violence.
The traffic police took to Twitter to inform commuters about the diversion.
Traffic coming from Delhi to Ghaziabad has been diverted from Akshardham Setu towards Noida and Vikas Marg for Ghaziabad. Traffic on road no 57A has been diverted to Hasanpur Karkari Mod for Shahdara, Anand Vihar and Ghaziabad.
Traffic has been diverted from Ghazipur roundabout to Anand Vihar, Bhopura Border Ghaziabad via road no 56, from Murga Mandi roundabout to Dr Hadgewar Marg then Nala Road up to UP Gate Ghaziabad for Vaishali, Vasundhara, Ghaziabad via Paper Market, Ghazipur.
In another tweet about 45 minutes later, the traffic police informed commuters that NH-24 has been reopened and normal traffic movement on the stretch has been restored.
Is U.P. ‘naya Kashmir’, asks Omar Abdullah
The Yogi Adityanath-led Uttar Pradesh government’s decision to not allow Opposition leaders enter Lakhimpur Kheri has created an uproar.
Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah drew a parallel with the clampdown in Jammu and Kashmir. “Uttar Pradesh is the ‘naya J&K’ [new J&K],” he tweeted. Opposition leaders were similarly stopped from entering Jammu and Kashmir after it was stripped of Statehood, bifurcated and the Article 370 .
SKM writes to President seeking action
The Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) has written to President Ram Nath Kovind demanding action against the killing of farmers at Lakhmipur Kheri .
The SKM’s demands were outlined in the letter, calling for Minister of State for Home Affairs Ajay Kumar Mishra be immediately dismissed from his post and a case filed against him for inciting violence and spreading communal hatred. It urged that Mr. Mishra’s son and others associated with the attack be booked under Section 302 (murder) and arrested immediately, and that the investigation be carried out by a Special Investigation Team under the supervision of the Supreme Court.
Akhilesh Yadav detained in Lucknow
Samajwadi Party (SP) president Akhilesh Yadav was detained on Monday as he sat on a dharna outside his Vikramaditya Marg residence in Lucknow after he was not allowed to go to Lakhimpur.
On Monday morning, security was beefed up outside his home and police trucks placed to block the road and restrict any movement, following which he sat on the dharna with party leaders Ram Gopal Yadav, MLC Anand Bhadauria and others.
Hundreds of party workers also gathered outside the house, and a heavy police force was deployed in the area.
"Vehicles are being run over those who raise their voices. We want the arrest of the minister and his son in the Lakhimpur incident," Akhilesh Yadav told reporters.
Farmers will win fight for justice: Rahul Gandhi
A day after a violent clash in Uttar Pradesh's Lakhimpur Kheri left four farmers dead, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on October 4 said farmers will win this fight for justice.
"Priyanka, I know that you will not retreat. They fear your courage. We will ensure that the country's 'annadatas' win this non-violent fight for justice," he said in a tweet in Hindi, using the hashtag "NoFear", he said.
Priyanka Gandhi also alleged that the BJP is doing the politics of crushing the farmers in the country.
"The BJP government is doing the politics of crushing the farmers and finishing them," she said on Twitter.
She also put out a video message alleging that this country belongs to the farmers and not to the BJP. She said she was going to Lakhimpur to share the pain of the farmers injured in the violent clashes and it was no crime or wrongdoing.
U.P. Police stops AAP MP Sanjay Singh from visiting Lakhimpur Kheri
AAP MP Sanjay Singh was stopped by police in Uttar Pradesh's Sitapur when he was en route to Lakhimpur Kheri in the early hours of October 4, a day after eight people died as violence erupted during a farmers' protest there.
The AAP leader was stopped by the police and the local administration at Biswan in Sitapur around 2.30 am while going to Lakhimpura Kheri to meet the family members of the farmers killed in the violence, the party said.
Mr. Singh is still at the spot and has refused to step back, an AAP leader added. -PTI
Chhattisgarh CM Baghel slams U.P. govt for not allowing him to land at Lucknow airport
Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel on October 4 slammed the BJP-led Uttar Pradesh government for not allowing him to land at the Lucknow airport, and asked whether civil rights have been abolished in the northern state.
Mr. Baghel was scheduled to visit Lakhimpur Kheri in U.P. where eight people were killed after violence erupted during a farmers' protest on Sunday.
The Uttar Pradesh government has requested the Lucknow airport authority not to allow the arrival of Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Baghel and Punjab's Deputy CM Sukhjinder S Randhawa, who had announced plans to visit Lakhimpur Kheri in view of the violence there.
Priyanka, Deepender Hooda detained
Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and party MP Deepender Hooda were detained in Sitapur at around 5 am in a bid to stop them from meeting the families of victims, Congress state President Ajay Kumar Lallu told PTI.
Stopping them in such a way is "undemocratic", he added.
Ms. Gandhi's convoy was earlier briefly stopped by Uttar Pradesh Police officials in Lucknow, where the Congress general secretary had arrived on Sunday night, within a few hours of violence being reported during an anti-farm laws protest.
The Congress' official Twitter handle posted a video of both the leaders being detained by the Uttar Pradesh Police.
'Unlawful detention of opposition leaders against democratic values: Ashok Gehlot
Stating that the unlawful detention of opposition leaders is against democratic values, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on October 4 condemned the move to stop Congress' Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and others from going to meet the families of farmers killed in Lakhimpur Kheri, Uttar Pradesh. Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel and Punjab Deputy Chief Minister S.S. Randhawa were among those prevented from going to the State by the BJP-led Uttar Pradesh government, Mr. Gehlot said, a day after violence during a farmers'' protest in Lakhimpur Kheri claimed eight lives, including four farmers.
"Only a dictator government can do this. Does the ruling BJP in U.P. want to end democracy? In this way, the violation of civil rights is also against the spirit of the Constitution," he said. -PTI
FIR against MoS Mishra's son, others
An FIR has been registered against Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra's son and several other persons in connection with the Lakhimpur violence that left eight persons dead.
Additional Chief Secretary, Home, Awanish Kumar Awasthi, told PTI that as copy of FIR was not available yet, details of the sections on which it was registered were not known.
ADG, Law and Order, Prashant Kumar, who is camping in Lakhimpur told PTI, "I am on the spot. Two FIRs from both sides have been registered in the matter. Detailed information in not available yet as internet is not working here." "We will let the media know about it soon," he said.
BSP leader too prevented from reaching Lakhimpur Kheri
Demanding a judicial probe in the violence, BSP supremo Mayawati said her party's national general secretary Satish Chandra Mishra was stopped in Lucknow to prevent him from reaching Lakhimpur.
"BSP's national general secretary and Rajya Sabha MP S.C. Mishra was placed under house arrest late last night at his residence in Lucknow. It is continuing so that the party delegation under his leadership cannot reach Lakhimpur Kheri to get the correct report of the violence. This is very sad and deplorable," Ms. Mayawati said in a tweet in Hindi.
"Due to the involvement of two BJP ministers in the Kheri case, a proper government investigation of this incident, justice to the victims and strict punishment to the guilty does not seem possible. Therefore, this incident in which eight people have been confirmed dead so far requires a judicial inquiry. This is the demand of the BSP," she said. -PTI
U.P. govt asks Lucknow airport not to allow arrival of Chhattisgarh CM, Punjab Deputy CM
The Uttar Pradesh government has requested the Lucknow airport authority not to allow the arrival of the Chhattisgarh chief minister and the Punjab deputy CM, who announced plans to visit Lakhimpur Kheri.
Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel and Punjab Deputy CM Sukhjinder S. Randhawa had announced that they would visit Lakhimpur on October 4.
"After the incident in Lakhimpur, the district magistrate has imposed prohibitory orders there to maintain law and order. It is requested that you should not allow Chhattisgarh CM and Punjab deputy CM at the CCS Airport in Lucknow," Additional Chief Secretary, Home, Awanish Kumar Awasthi said in a letter dated October 3 to the Airport Authority of India. -PTI
Book those involved in death of farmers in Lakhimpur Kheri for murder: Varun Gandhi to U.P. CM
BJP MP Varun Gandhi said a murder case under IPC section 302 should be lodged against those involved in the death of farmers in Lakhimpur Kheri, emphasising that protesting farmers should be dealt with restraint and patience.
In a letter to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, Mr. Gandhi also demanded a CBI inquiry in the case in a time-bound manner and Rs 1 crore compensation to the family members of deceased farmers.
Underlining that the "agitating farmer brothers are our own citizens", the three-time BJP MP from Uttar Pradesh said they are suffering due to some issues and protesting under their democratic rights.
"We should deal with them with great restraint and patience. In any case, we should treat our farmers with sensitivity and only in Gandhian and democratic way within the ambit of law," he said and sought a compensation of Rs 1 crore to the victims. -PTI
Rakesh Tikait demands sacking of MoS Ajay Mishra, arrest of his son
Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) leader Rakesh Tikait on October 4 demanded that Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra be sacked and that his son be arrested in connection with the death of farmers during a protest here.
He also demanded Rs. one crore compensation and a government job for the family members of the deceased farmers. -PTI
BKU's Rakesh Tikait reaches violence-hit Lakhimpur Kheri
Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) leader Rakesh Tikait along with several supporters reached here early Monday in wake of the violence during an anti-farm laws protest that claimed eight lives.
“We will first meet the farmers and villagers and discuss the situation with them. The future course of action will be done on the basis of the discussion with the villagers and farmers. Their decision will prevail,” Mr. Tikait told reporters at Banbirpur village. -PTI
Host of opposition leaders to head to violence-hit Lakhimpur Kheri in U.P.
Several opposition leaders, including those from the Congress and Trinamool Congress, are headed to Lakimpuri Kheri where eight people were killed in the violence that erupted after a BJP supporter’s SUV turned turtle near a farmers’ protest site, trampling two protesters to death.
The eight who were killed in the violence that erupted at the protest site ahead of Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya’s visit to a village in Lakhimpur Kheri included four farmers and four BJP workers. -PTI
AAP demands CBI probe into Lakhimpur Kheri violence that killed 8, including 4 farmers
The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on October 3 demanded a CBI probe into Uttar Pradesh's Lakhimpur Kheri violence in which eight people, including four farmers, died after two SUVs allegedly ran over protesters.
Delhi chief minister and AAP convenor Arvind Kejriwal demanded that the perpetrators of "such a heinous crime" be given "strictest punishment". -PTI