LUCKNOW: With the BJP facing flak over Lakhimpur Kheri violence, its UP chief Swatantra Dev Singh on Sunday urged party workers to win people’s confidence with their conduct, saying “we are not in politics to loot” or “crush someone under a Fortuner”.
His remarks came after Union minister Ajay Mishra’s son Ashish Mishra was arrested on Saturday in connection with mowing down of four farmers by an SUV in Lakhimpur Kheri on October 3.
Addressing a meeting of UP BJP’s minority morcha, Singh said, “We have not come in politics to loot (people), nor have we come to crush someone under a Fortuner (SUV).
“You will get votes by your behaviour. If 10 people of your locality are praising you, my heart swells (with pride). Your behaviour should be such that people do not turn away their faces after seeing you,” he asserted.
The BJP leader’s comments came hours after Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra accused the government of trying to “save” a Union minister’s son in the case and said except BJP leaders and their “billionaire friends” nobody was safe in the country.
Four farmers were mowed down by the SUV when a group agitating against the Centre’s three new farm laws was demonstrating against the visit of UP Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya.
Two BJP workers and a driver were allegedly beaten to death by the angry protesters, while a local journalist was also killed in the violence.
The incident has triggered a political storm and put the BJP government on the back foot in the poll-bound state.
The Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM), which is spearheading the agitation against the Centre’s three farm laws, had alleged that the violence was held under a pre-planned conspiracy and demanded the arrest of the minister and his son.
The farmer unions said if the government does not accept their demands by October 11, they will take out a ‘Shaheed Kisan Yatra’ from Lakhimpur Kheri with the ashes of slain farmers.
A nine-member team headed by Deputy Inspector General of Police (Headquarters) Upendra Agarwal has been formed to investigate the FIR lodged against the minister’s son and others in the violence case.