Lakhimpur Kheri case: 4 farmers charged over killings of BJP workers, driver

Updated on Jan 22, 2022 04:05 AM IST

Uttar Pradesh Police on Friday filed a charge sheet against four farmers for allegedly murdering a driver and two Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers when violence broke out in Lakhimpur Kheri on October 3 and left eight people dead

Lakhimpur Kheri case: 4 farmers charged over killings of BJP workers, driver
Lakhimpur Kheri case: 4 farmers charged over killings of BJP workers, driver
By, Hindustan Times, Lucknow

Uttar Pradesh Police on Friday filed a charge sheet against four farmers for allegedly murdering a driver and two Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers when violence broke out in Lakhimpur Kheri on October 3 and left eight people dead.

This is the second charge sheet filed in the case that shook the country, led to the arrest of Union minister Ajay Mishra Teni’s son Ashish Mishra, and caused a logjam in Parliament as Opposition members pushed for the minister’s removal last month.

Uttar Pradesh Police on Friday filed a charge sheet against four farmers for allegedly murdering a driver and two Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers when violence broke out in Lakhimpur Kheri on October 3 and left eight people dead.

This is the second charge sheet filed in the case that shook the country, led to the arrest of Union minister Ajay Mishra Teni’s son Ashish Mishra, and caused a logjam in Parliament as Opposition members pushed for the minister’s removal last month.

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Police said in the 1,300-page charge sheet filed in local court, four farmers, who were identified as Gurvinder Singh, Kamaljeet Singh, and Gurpreet Singh and Vichitra Singh were named.

“The first three were charged under sections 302 (murder), 143 (unlawful assembly), 147(rioting), 148 (rioting armed with deadly weapons), 323 (voluntary causing hurt), 325 (causing grievous hurt) 427 (mischief causing damage of property) and 436 (mischief with fire),” said senior public prosecutor SP Yadav.

Vichitra Singh was charged under sections 109 (offering bribe), 114 (abettor present when offence committed), 427(mischief) 436 (mischief with fire) and 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach), added Yadav.

Four farmers and a journalist died when an SUV owned by Ajay Mishra ran over farmers from behind in Lakhimpur Kheri on October 3. In the ensuing violence, three more people — two of whom were Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers and one was the driver of the car — were killed.

Police officers aware of developments said investigators found direct involvement of the three farmers in the killings of the driver and two BJP workers. The police submitted evidence in form of video footage, mobile phone locations and call detail records. “The charge sheet states that the farmers attacked the driver and BJP workers with sticks and intention to kill them and intentionally set the vehicle on fire,” said an officer, requesting anonymity.

After the October 3 violence, two First information Reports (FIR) were filed. One was registered by a farmer, Jagjeet Singh, which named Ashish Mishra and other unidentified people. The second was filed by BJP worker Sumit Jaiswal and mentioned unidentified miscreants. Police identified and arrested seven farmers regarding the second FIR, who were arrested in October. Police said in the investigation, adequate proof was not found against three of them, and they will be released.

On December 14, a court in Uttar Pradesh added stringent sections of the IPC and Arms Act, including attempt to murder, to the First Information Report (FIR) after a special investigation team (SIT) said that incident was “well planned” and “deliberate”.

On January 3, the SIT filed a 5,000-page charge sheet against Ashish Mishra and 13 others, booking them under charges including murder (302 IPC), criminal conspiracy (120B IPC) and others. The investigators charged Ashish Mishra with attempt to murder and said that he was present at the spot when violence broke out. The minister and his son had maintained that they were not near the spot that day.

Yadav said a final report was filed against three farmers -- Ranjeet Singh, Sonu alias Kanwarjeet and Avatar Singh – who were named in the FIR but against whom sufficient evidence was not found.

“While the four farmers against whom charge sheet has been filed will remain in jail, release order of the other three has been sent to jail from the court,” informed Yadav.

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