As many as 8 people, 4 of whom were farmers, lost their lives in a shocking incident in Uttar Pradesh's Lakhimpur Kheri on Sunday. The farmers had assembled to protest against the visit of Union Minister of State for Home Affairs, Ajay Kumar Mishra and Deputy Chief Minister, Keshav Prasad Maurya.
The farmers were protesting following the comments made by Mr. Mishra on the farmers' protests. He had played down the protests saying it was a protest of, "10-15 people and it would take just two minutes to make them fall in line".
According to Dr. Darshan Pal, a leader of the farmer's union, "The farmers had planned to gherao the helipad to stop the arrival of the ministers. Once that ended and most people were on way back, three cars came… and mowed down the farmers… one farmer died on the spot and another in the hospital".
Minister Ajay Mishra has denied the allegations against his son Ashish Mishra, saying that his son was not present there and that miscreants had attacked the workers with swords and sticks. Meanwhile, a murder case has been filed against Ashish Mishra for his involvement.
Following the incident, the Congress has launched a series of attacks on the ruling party alleging that the BJP is against farmers. Rahul Gandhi had tweeted "The one who is silent even after seeing this inhuman massacre, he is already dead. But we will not let this sacrifice go in vain – Kisan Satyagraha Zindabad! #FarmersProtest"
The Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) issued a statement alleging that one of the farmers was shot by Ashish Mishra while the others were run over by the vehicles of his convoy. They also called for other famrer's organizations to hold protests across the country on October 4.
Meanwhile, mobile internet services have been suspended and CrPC section 144 has been imposed in parts of the violence hit district, according to officials.
Other leaders including Chattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghal and Punjab deputy CM SS Randhawa were also not allowed to land in Lucknow. Mr. Baghal released what he said was an order by the UP government to Lucknow airport, on his twitter. According to that order, they were not to be allowed to land in view of the situation of violence.
Elsewhere, Akhilesh Yadav, Chief of Samajwadi Party was also detained by the police over a sit-in protest outside his house, after being denied from visiting Lakhimpur Kheri district.