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Lakhimpur Kheri incident: Reporter’s father says he died after being run over

Ram Dulare Kashyap returning after conducting the final rites of his son Raman.  

On Monday evening, some 20 km from Tikonia where hundreds of farmers demanded justice for the victims of Sunday’s incident, Ram Dulare Kashyap was returning home to Nighasan after performing the last rites of his son Raman Kashyap.

Raman, a journalist, was among the eight persons who was killed after vehicles in Union Minister Ajay Mishra’s convoy ploughed into a crowd of protesting farmers. Apart from Raman, the driver of a car in the convoy of Union Minister Ajay Mishra, identified as Hari Om Mishra, and two BJP workers — Shubham Mishra and Shyam Sunder — were also killed.

Raman, who had been working with a local television channel for more than a year, as per his family, had left home at noon on Sunday to cover the protests planned by the farmers against the visit of Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya at an event organised by Union Mnister Ajay Kumar Mishra in Banveerpur, his the ancestral village.

From the injuries, Mr. Kashyap, a former teacher, says his son was killed after being run over and was not lynched by the farmers. “When the three-four cars came…he may have been shooting some photos…the cars ran over people. My son died in that,” said Mr. Kashyap.

He does not blame the farmers. Little is known about the exact nature of injuries suffered by Raman as his autopsy report has not been released.

“I would have figured out if the farmers had murdered him had I seen lathi marks on his body. The farmers did not run the car over anyone. Whoever drove it must be from BJP or someone close to the MP’s son,” Mr. Kashyap told The Hindu. He said he saw marks on his son’s body indicating that he was run over by the car. His son also had an injury on his head, he said.

“There were marks of being dragged and of friction. No other marks…Gadi se hi mera beta mara hain. Ab chahe kiski gadi ho (my son was killed by a vehicle, no matter whose vehicle it was),” he said.

The family has submitted a complaint to the police saying Raman was run over by the cars but did not name an accused. “I have targeted the owner of the car. We saw the cars but we don’t know who was driving,” said Raman’s brother Pawan.

SHO Nighasan Ram Lakhan Patel, who received the complaint from the family, said it was transferred to the police in Tikonia, where the incident happened.

Mr. Patel said that while the autopsy report would make clear how Raman died, there were no bullet injuries on his body. Also, the family did not mention any firearm, the officer said.

In their complaint, Mr. Patel said, the scribe’s father alleged that he run over by the car of the Minister’s son, Ashish. “...Mantriji ke ladke ne tezi se gadi chada di (the Minister’s son ran over him at great speed),” the officer said, quoting what Mr Kashyap reportedly said.

Mr. Patel said that it was not known if Raman was killed after being run over by the cars or was assaulted.

Surjeet Channi, a journalist who was also injured in his arm and leg while covering the incident, said he did not know how Raman died as he was himself trying to evade the violence and save himself. He says after the car mowed down those in its path, it came to a halt following which farmers cornered it. Mr. Channi said he had jumped aside to evade one of the cars and did not see where Raman was positioned. “We, be it journalists or farmers, didn’t get time to move as the cars were coming very fast,” he said.

Mr. Channi said he left the spot soon after convincing the angry farmers in Punjabi, his mother tongue, that he was a scribe and even offered to take injured persons to hospital in his car, which he feared could also be set on fire. It was later that he came to know about Raman’s death, he said.

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Printable version | Dec 2, 2021 1:11:13 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/lakhimpur-kheri-incident-reporters-father-says-he-died-after-being-run-over/article36847958.ece

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