Express News Service
LUCKNOW: While a video clip has gone viral on various social media platforms showing a black SUV apparently mowing down protesting farmers, adding fuel to the fire over the death of nine people including four farmers in Lakhimpur Kheri on Sunday, Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra reiterated that he would resign from his post if there was a single piece of evidence indicating his son Ashish’s presence at the spot of the violence on the fateful day.
“I will resign from the minister’s post if a single proof surfaces of my son being present on the spot where the incident happened in Lakhimpur Kheri,” said Ajay Mishra while talking to mediapersons on Tuesday.
Nine people, including four farmers, had lost their lives on Sunday as violence had broken out during a farmers’ protest in Lakhimpur Kheri. Farmers’ outfits have claimed that a car carrying the son of Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra ploughed into the group of protesters.
Tweeting the video, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi, who has been in police custody after being arrested by the Sitapur police in the wee hours on Monday while on her way to Lakhimpur, asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who was in Lucknow on Tuesday, why the driver of the vehicle had not been arrested yet.
ALSO READ: Lakhimpur violence: Autopsy of deceased farmers confirms death due to hemorrhage, trauma; no bullet injury found
Priyanka tweeted the video clip along with a message for the PM wherein she questioned why the son of the minister was still out of the police net while she was in police custody illegally for more than 30 hours without any warrant. However, later the police authorities claimed that Priyanka Gandhi Vadra was arrested under Sections 151 (causing disturbance to public peace), 107 (wilfull misrepresentation) and 116 (abetment of an offence) of the IPC.
The 29-second video clip, which also shows another vehicle following the SUV, has raised questions on the version of the incident by Union minister Ajay Mishra Teni who had claimed that the vehicle was attacked by farmers which led to the accident.
Deependar Hooda tweeted from Sitapur: “Those who trampled farmers are roaming free while we are in custody for 36 hours. While victim farmers’ families are mourning the death of their dear ones, Utsav is going on in Lucknow.” Even the BJP MP from adjoining Pilibhit Varun Gandhi also joined the opposition’s demand for a probe into the video, saying those responsible for deliberately ploughing through the farmers should be arrested.
ALSO READ: ‘Why the person who ran over farmers has not been arrested yet?’ Priyanka hits out at PM Modi
The Aam Aadmi Party’s Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh tweeted the same video, raising questions about the minister’s claims. “It can be clearly seen in the video that farmers were mowed down but the Union minister’s son was saying that he was busy in a wrestling competition in the village.”
Teni had claimed that his son Ashish Mishra, who is now booked for murder, was not present in the vehicle when the incident took place. He had said the protesters started pelting stones and attacked the vehicle after which the driver lost control and it ran over the farmers.
An FIR has been registered against Ashish Misra in connection with the violence.