What message is PM Modi conveying by not sacking Union minister, asks Priyanka Gandhi
Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Thursday wondered what kind of message was Prime Minister Narendra Modi sending out by not removing Union minister Ajay Kumar Mishra whose son was an accused in the Lakhimpur Kheri violence case in which at least eight persons, including farmers and a journalist, were killed on Sunday.
Vadra said by allowing Mishra, a junior minister in the home department, to continue in his post, Modi was giving the message that those in power could do anything.
“PM Modi needs to think what kind of message he is giving to the nation. Why is he (Mishra) still in the PM’s government? Doesn't he (PM Modi) have any moral responsibility? Why has the minister not been terminated yet?” the Congress leader was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
The Union minister's son, Ashish Kumar Mishra, and others have been booked in connection with the violence that erupted during a farmers' protest on Sunday. On Thursday, police said the minister’s son had been summoned before the crime branch on Friday. Unable to find him, they pasted a notice outside the Union minister’s residence later in the evening.
Vadra said if the minister of state for home did not resign or if the government failed to sack him, it would prove that one could get away with anything if the individual was a person of power or a minister. Vadra said at Moharnia, where she met family members of Gurvinder Singh, one of the four farmers killed in the Lakhimpur Kheri violence.
"There is no justice for the common people, the poor, farmers, Dalits and women. I want to tell Narendra Modiji that this is the message that he is giving to people," the Congress general secretary said.
Speaking about her meetings with the bereaved families since Wednesday, when the Uttar Pradesh government released her from detention and allowed her to go to Lakhimpur and Bahraich , Vadra said, "We have met the families of all the deceased farmers. Everyone says they are not bothered about the compensation, they are only concerned about the dismissal of the minister of state for home and the arrest of the criminals."
She also said the families of the victims had some video clips of Sunday's incident that showed what had transpired that day. "The family members have said that they want justice," she added.
Gandhi's convoy of vehicles was stopped by the district administration near the Ghaghra Ghat bridge as soon as it entered Bahraich from Barabanki as Section 144 of Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) was in force and the Congress workers accompanying her raised slogans against the Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh in protest.
The magistrate and the police officers present on the spot subsequently allowed only Congress leaders Naseemuddin Siddiqui and Tanuj Punia, who had come with Vadra to proceed along with her to meet the families of the deceased farmers.
The Congress general secretary, who has so far met the family members of five of the eight people killed in Sunday's violence, said she also wanted to meet the kin of the BJP workers who lost their lives.
"I had asked the IG to enquire if they (the BJP workers' families) were ready for the same, but was outrightly told that they do not want to meet me. I then asked him to convey my sympathy to them," she added.
On her way to Bahraich, Vadra also performed a "puja" at a temple in the Arjunganj area of Lucknow.
(With agency inputs)