Lakhimpur violence | Congress demands dismissal of Ajay Mishra in meeting with President

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi addressing the media after the party's delegation met President Ram Nath Kovind, over the Lakhimpur Kheri incident, in New Delhi on October 13, 2021.   | Photo Credit: Shiv Kumar Pushpakar

A Congress delegation, led by former party president Rahul Gandhi, met President Ram Nath Kovind on Wednesday and demanded the dismissal of Minister of State (MoS) for Home Affairs, Ajay Mishra Teni, over the Lakhimpur Kheri violence, and called for an impartial probe by two sitting judges of the Supreme Court.

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Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who was part of the delegation, claimed that President Kovind had “assured” them that “he would talk to the government about it today itself”.

Though the Congress had written to the President, seeking time for a seven-member delegation, a five-member delegation eventually called on him. The delegation included former Defence Minister A. K. Antony, Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge, former Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad, besides Mr. Gandhi and Ms. Vadra.

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They also presented a memorandum of facts about the Lakhimpur Kheri incident to the President.

Demanding an inquiry by two sitting Supreme Court judges, Mr. Gandhi said, “There cannot be an impartial inquiry and justice cannot be given till the time the MoS Home is sacked. This is the voice of not just the families of those killed but of all the farmers and this voice is being suppressed.”

“The families want that the person who committed these murders should be punished,” he added.

Ms. Vadra told reporters that the demands raised by her party reflect what “every right thinking person” would want the Central Government to do.

“The message that this government seems to be sending is that you will not get justice if you are a poor person, Dalit, farmer or a woman. There is no justice or the rule of law for them. And if you are a leader of the ruling party, then the law doesn’t apply on you,” she told reporters after meeting the President.

In the memorandum, the Congress said, “It is important to note that on September 27th, 2021, the day of the Bharat Bandh called by protesting farmers against the three black laws, Shri Ajay Mishra Teni, MoS Home Affairs, in a public function openly threatened the agitating farmers and even boasted about his dubious antecedents.”

The Congress also noted that given that Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders, including Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, were making conciliatory statements towards the MoS Home, the situation will not change without intervention. Further, no police official would dare to fairly investigate the son if the father continued in his post as a Minister.

“In these difficult circumstances, we call upon you as the custodian of our Constitution and the moral compass to this Government: to immediately dismiss Union MOS Home Affairs, Sh. Ajay Mishra Teni; to direct an independent judicial investigation by a Commission comprising of two sitting judges of the Supreme Court of India or the High Court,” the memorandum said.

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Printable version | Dec 1, 2021 12:58:10 AM |

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