Lakhimpur Violence: 'Nyay Mahapanchat' Held in Pilibhit to Demand Dismissal, Arrest of Ajay Mishra
Lucknow: Reiterating its demand for a fair investigation into the Lakhimpur Kheri incident and dismissal of Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra from the post, a 'Nyay Mahapanchayat' was organised in Harsinghpur village of Puranpur tehsil of Pilibhit district, Uttar Pradesh on Sunday afternoon under the banner of Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM).
The SKM, an umbrella body of farmer unions, which is spearheading the agitation against three new agriculture laws of the Centre, expressed suspicion over a fair investigation of the massacre.
“We reiterate our demand for a comprehensive investigation into the brutal death of four farmers and a journalist. A fair investigation in this matter and securing justice is not possible with Ajay Mishra 'Teni' as a Union minister. The SKM once again demands speedy justice and says that it is possible only if Ajay Mishra 'Teni' is sacked and arrested,” said SKM leader Gurnam Singh Chaduni who led the mahapanchayat.
Referring to the Supreme Court hearing in the Lakhimpur Kheri matter on Wednesday, he alleged that the statements of eyewitnesses of the incident were not recorded.
Talking about farmers’ economic woes, he added "I opposed when world trade organisation was implemented during the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government but it was not heard. The middlemen of America got the benefit of WTO directly. When farmers here can produce pulses and mustard, it is being imported from abroad whereas farmers not getting the minimum support price despite producing oil. pulses and other items."
Chaduni and farmer leader Tejinder Singh Virk who was injured during the Lakhimpur Kheri violence paid tribute to the martyred farmers in Tikunia and warned that the Terai region including Piliphit, Lakhimpur would turn into an epicentre of farmers' protest if justice not served in the Kheri incident.
"Demonstrations would be held at administrative headquarters in every district of the state. A memorandum will be submitted to the government with a demand that the Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Ajay Mishra be removed from his post," Chaduni said addressing the farmers, adding that the Yogi government had displayed the audacity of using " muscle power".
"In the Tikunia incident, the government has not yet dismissed Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra Teni, while the settlement was about the demand for dismissal. If the situation remains the same, the state will witness a series of protests against the removal of Mishra and his arrest. Furthermore, the government betrayed farmers. It was said that no farmer should be prosecuted, but after registering a case, four farmers have been arrested. This has been done so that the farmers can be pressurised to compromise to get the son of the minister out of jail. But the farmers will not lay down until all the culprits of Tikunia case will be arrested and sent to jail,” Chaduni claimed.
Addressing the gathering, farmer leader Tajinder Singh Virk said how on one side “the Centre is bent upon harassing the farmers and is not interested in fulfilling their genuine demands,” and on the other side, “the Uttar Pradesh government and its ministers are mowing down protesting farmers from behind. The Centre should not remain under any illusion that farmers will go away. We are here to stay till our demands are not fulfilled.”
Four farmers were killed in Tikunia area of Lakhimpur Kheri district, the native place of the Union minister, in Uttar Pradesh on October 3 after they were allegedly mowed down by an SUV. Later, the crowd lynched four other people, including BJP workers. Over a dozen people, including the minister’s son Ashish Mishra, have been arrested so far by a special investigation team (SIT) which is probing the case.
Meanwhile, the Samyukta Kisan Morcha, a collective banner of over 40 farmers’ unions that is leading the protests at Delhi borders against the three contentious farm laws, has announced a ‘Kisan Mahapanchayat’ on November 22 in Lucknow.
Sharing the news about the Lucknow mahapanchayat Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) leader Rakesh Tikait has said: “The Kisan Mahapanchayat on November 22 will be historic. It will prove to be the last nail in the coffin for the anti-farmer government and the three black laws. Now, the farmers' movement will also intensify in Purvanchal."
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