India / Video of SUV running over farmers in UP's Lakhimpur Kheri surfaces

Zoom News : Oct 05, 2021, 02:52 PM
Lakhimpur Kheri: A video purportedly showing two vehicles, including a sports utility vehicle (SUV), running over a group of people at Tikunia in Lakhimpur Kheri, the scene of the violence during a farmer protest that left eight people dead on Sunday, has gone viral with farmers saying it has vindicated their version of the incident. The vehicles that follow can be seen passing blithely on. The source and the veracity of the video could not be ascertained. But the visuals are in sync with the version of the protesting farmers about the incident even as the identity of the individuals in the vehicles is unclear.

One version of the incident is that the vehicles came under attack and lost control. Nothing of that sort can be seen in the video. The lead vehicle appears to deliberately run over the farmers — and from behind. To be sure, the video is only 29-second-long and is playing on a smartphone. The exact spot in the video appears to be of Tikunia road leading towards Lakhimpur and around 100 metres from the playground where the farmers were staging the protest on the day of the incident.

If authentic, the video is likely to inflame sentiments against the Union minister of state for home Ajay Mishra Teni and his son Ashish Mishra. Farmers maintain that Ashish Mishra was in one of the vehicles and escaped even as others were allegedly lynched by farmers after the incident. The minister and his son, who was on Monday booked for murder and criminal conspiracy in connection with the violence, have denied the allegations.

Hardeep Singh, who was at the spot at the time of the incident and has seen this video, said: “The video confirms what we have been saying all along. And we say that Ashish Mishra was present in one of the vehicles and is responsible for the killing of the innocent farmers.”

In a tweet addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra said she has been kept under detention without any order or first information and asked why the one who “crushed” the farmers was still not arrested. She tweeted hours before Modi’s visit to Lucknow on Tuesday. Priyanka Gandhi was detained on Monday while she was on her way to Lakhimpur Kheri.

Indian Youth Congress chief Srinivas BV and several other people posted the video earlier on Twitter.

Congress spokesperson Anshu Awasthi said: “People in the state are asking the question as to why the PM (Prime Minister) who is celebrating and coming to Lucknow is not going to Lakhimpur Kheri to meet the victim families.”

Additional director general (law and order) Prashant Kumar said all the videos and photographs of the Lakhimpur Kheri incident that have surfaced and are surfacing will be verified and included in the investigation.