Accusing the Centre of playing politics over the drought in Uttar Pradesh, the SP on Tuesday alleged that the NDA government’s “scripted drama” of sending a water train to Bundelkhand had cost The Indian Express photographer Ravi Kanojia his life.
Kanojia, Principal Photographer with The Indian Express, died on Monday in an accident while on an assignment in Jhansi to cover a water train.
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Raising the issue in both Houses of Parliament, SP members blamed the Centre for his death. “The political drama playing out in UP is for everyone to see. A water train, meant for distribution among the people of Bundelkhand, has been stationed at the Jhansi station for a week. Yesterday, in an unfortunate incident, The Indian Express photographer was electrocuted while taking pictures of this train. He died in a minute.”
“Our CM has announced a compensation of Rs 20 lakh for his family. The Centre’s political drama has cost a photographer his life and it has to take responsibility,” SP’s Chandrapal Singh said in Rajya Sabha. His colleague in Lok Sabha mentioned Kanojia while attacking the Centre for indulging in “water train politics”.
SP members then demanded that the Centre prove its intentions by disbursing the funds sought by Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav. “We had asked the Centre for water tankers and funds but haven’t received the same. Instead, it despatched a train. This has been done to extract political mileage,” Singh added.