Express News Service
CHANDIGARH: Demanding dismissal of the Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra and arrest of his son Ashish Mishra the Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) on Saturday decided to burn the effigies of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, and local leaders on Dusshera. The SKM also announced a nationwide rail blockade on October 18 and farmers’ mahapanchayat in Lucknow on October 26.
The SKM, umbrella organisation of farmers union, in its general body meeting at the Singhu border has raised doubts over the investigations carried out by the Uttar Pradesh Police into the Lakhimpur Kheri violence in which eight people, including four farmers, were killed. SKM leaders Balbir Singh Rajewa, Yogendra Yadav, and Rakesh Tikait said that Ajay Mishra should be dismissed from the cabinet and arrested on charges of spreading disharmony, and murder and conspiracy. While his son Ashish Mishra (Monu) and his associates (in whom the names of Sumit Jaiswal and Ankit Das have surfaced) who have been accused of murder, should be immediately arrested.
Rajewal, Tikait, and Yadav announced that on October 12 ‘antim ardaas’ (Bhog ceremony) will be held in Lakhimpur Kheri and asked all supporters to either come to Lakhimpur Kheri for the `antim ardas’ or remember those who had died at their local gurudwara, temple, mosque, church, or protest site. If this is not possible, people can light five candles in memory of those killed in “Lakhimpur Kheri on October 12 four farmers and a journalist, ‘’said Yadav.
They added that if the demands are not accepted by October 11, then the Samyukt Kisan Morcha will launch a nationwide protest program. After the Antim Ardas, Shaheed Kisan Yatra will be taken out from Lakhimpur Kheri by taking the ‘asthi’ of martyr farmers. This yatra will be started by carrying separate ‘asthi kalash’ for each district of Uttar Pradesh and each state of the country. The yatra will conclude at a holy or historical place in every district and state.
“On Dusshera the farm union will burn effigies of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath besides other local leaders. Some of the members wanted to burn the effigy of Manohar Lal Khattar, some of Yogi Adityanath, so we decided that the third effigy could be of any local villain,’’ Yadav said.
The leaders announced a nationwide `rail roko’ protest from 10 AM to 4 PM on October 18 and a farmers’ mahapanchayat in Lucknow on October 26.
The farmer leaders said that they have rejected the Special Investigation Team (SIT) and judicial inquiry set up by the UP Government, noting that the Supreme Court had also said it was not satisfied.
Farmer leader Joginder Singh Ugrahan, who heads BKU (Ugrahan) the largest farm union of Punjab), said that the central government has adopted a violent approach against protesting farmers but the farmers would not take the path of violence.
Tikait also criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi over his `silence’ on the incident.
“The Lakhimpur Kheri massacre will be remembered as a painful chapter in the history of the farm movement of India. This incident has completely exposed the character of the Union Government, the Uttar Pradesh Government, and Bharatiya Janata Party which is in power at both places. BJP is not ready to take any step against its leaders and others even after there is clear evidence of such a big murder and involvement of BJP leaders in it. It is clear that the BJP has now turned to violence after losing ground in the face of this historic farm movement,’’ they said.