Farmers on Friday presented a masked man who himself admitted that he was sent to Singhu to create violence. (Photo: ANI)
Farmers on Friday presented a masked man who himself admitted that he was sent to Singhu to create violence. (Photo: ANI)

Masked man's 'plot' to incite violence at Singhu, 'U-turn': What we know so far

Claims and counter-claims are being made over who planted the masked man who first claimed that he was sent to create disruption at farmers' protest and then denied.
Written by Poulomi Ghosh
UPDATED ON JAN 23, 2021 03:00 PM IST

Controversy over a masked man who was presented as a disruptive element planted to incite violence at the farmers' protest site at Singhu marked rapid developments in the past 12 hours. At a late-night press conference on Friday, union leaders presented the man who claimed that he along with another 10 people, including two girls, were sent to the protest site at Singhu to incite violence. However, within 12 hours, a video of the youth surfaced where he apparently claimed that he was reading a script given by the union leaders at the press conference.

Here is what we know about the controversy:

> Farmers' leaders called a late-night press conference at Singhu border or Friday. This came after the 11th round of meeting with ministers ended in a deadlock. Agriculture minister Narendra Singh Tomar alleged that the protest has lost its sanctity.

> The identity of the man presented at the press meet could not be established at that time as he was masked. Later, he was identified as Yogesh.

> In the press meet, he claimed he was doing a recce for his assignment of "shooting" a few farmers between January 23 and 26.

> The man also claimed that he was trained and paid by some police personnel. However, he did not identify any police personnel.

> Police personnel intervened during the press conference and took the masked man.

> Centering their narrative around this man, the farmers reiterated their claim that attempts have been on to incite people.

> On Saturday, Haryana police questioned the man and said they have not found any lead in the conspiracy angle. The man does not have any past criminal record, police said.

> Meanwhile, another video surfaced on Saturday in which the masked man apparently said that he was forced to say all those things at the press meet. He alleged that farmers had threatened him. The authenticity of the second video has not yet been proved.

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