Four farmers were among eight persons killed in violent clashes in UP’s Lakhimpur Kheri. (PTI Photos)
The mortal remains of three of the farmers, who were mowed down by a vehicle during a protest in Lakhimpur Kheri, were cremated at their native places on Tuesday, while the family of the fourth one demanded a second post-mortem. Bahraich Additional Superintendent of Police (Rural) Ashok Kumar was quoted as saying by PTI, “A decision on the demand for a second post mortem could be taken only by senior officials.”
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The families of Lavpreet Singh (19), Nachattar Singh (65) and Daljeet Singh (42) agreed to the cremation after hours of negotiations involving police officials and farmer leader Rakesh Tikait. But the family of Gurvinder Singh (22) of Matera tehsil refused to cremate him till a second autopsy is done and alleged that he was shot dead.
Meanwhile, with Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi being arrested and Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel being reportedly stopped at the Lucknow airport, Congress leaders slammed BJP over the crisis on Tuesday, with Rajasthan CM saying that ‘democracy is under threat’ and Punjab CM Charanjit Singh Channi stating that the Lakhimpur Kheri incident reminded him of the Jallianwala Bagh tragedy.
Addressing a dharna at the Rajasthan Congress Pradesh Committee (PCC) office here against the Lakhimpur violence, Gehlot further said, “The situation is dreadful. What happened in Lakhimpur Kheri is not a small thing; this has shaken the whole country,” Gehlot said. Meanwhile, Channi said he will meet Union Home Minister Amit Shah in the evening and will raise with him the Lakhimpur Kheri incident. Channi, who along with some ministers and Congress legislators held a silent protest at Gandhi Smarak Bhawan here, said the violence in Lakhimpur Kheri reminds him of the 1919 Jallianwala Bagh tragedy.
Earlier, the Sitapur police on Tuesday arrested Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi and at least 10 others, to “prevent the commission of cognizable offences”. Other than Priyanka Gandhi, those arrested include Congress leader Deepender Singh Hooda, UP Congress state president Ajay Kumar Lallu and party MLC Deepak Singh. The arrest has been made under section 151 (arrest to prevent the commission of cognizable offences) of the CrPC.
Uttar Pradesh, Lakhimpur Kheri Violence Highlights: 8 dead, including 4 farmers; Priyanka Gandhi arrested; Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel stopped from leaving Lucknow airport.
A vehicle set ablaze after clashes broke out following the death of the farmers who were allegedly run over by a vehicle in the convoy of a Union Minister. (Photo: PTI)
Lakhimpur Kheri violence Incident Live News:
On Sunday, four farmers were among eight persons killed in Uttar Pradesh's Lakhimpur Kheri after a convoy of three SUVs, including one owned by Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra, hit a group of farmer protesters leading to a clash. Farm leaders, local residents and sources in the Uttar Pradesh Police told The Indian Express this was a "flare-up" waiting to happen after days of tension sparked by "provocative" gestures and remarks by Mishra aimed at protesting farmers.
Opposition parties on Monday slammed the BJP government in Uttar Pradesh for not allowing their leaders to visit the Lakhimpur Kheri violence site, alleging it was an attempt to cover up the incident.
CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury said democracy was being "throttled", while AAP's chief spokesperson Saurabh Bharadwaj termed it the "Hathras model" and alleged both state and central governments were trying to cover up the violence.
Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Monday sat on a hunger strike following her detention while on the way to meet the families of farmers killed. "Today’s incident shows that this government is using politics to mow down farmers. This is the farmers’ country, not BJP's... I'm not committing any crime by deciding to meet the victims' kin...Why are you stopping us? You should have a warrant," the Congress leader said after being detained.
Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav was also detained by the police from outside his residence in Lucknow where he staged a sit-in after being stopped from visiting Lakhimpur Kheri district.
There is disquiet in the BJP over the violence and deaths in Lakhimpuri Kheri. While some leaders suggest it was a "pre-planned conspiracy" and insinuated "Khalistani links", others have expressed anguish at the leadership's handling of the situation.
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