Priyanka Gandhi attends final prayers of slain farmers in Lakhimpur violence

Lucknow: Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Tuesday attended the ‘antim ardas’ (final prayers) of the farmers who were killed in the Lakhimpur Kheri violence a few days back even as the farmer leaders continued to press for the dismissal of union minister Ajay Mishra, whose son Ashish Mishra was accused of running over four farmers at Tikonia in the district on October 3.

Accompanied by senior UP Congress leaders, Priyanka, who has been at the forefront of leading protests against the BJP governments at the Centre and Uttar Pradesh over the violence, paid her respect to the departed souls.

The Kisan Morcha, which had organised the ‘antim ardas’ and ‘langar’ (feast), however, did not allow the Congress leader to share the stage saying that they wanted to keep the function ‘apolitical’. ”We will not allow any politicians to share the stage,” said a farmer leader.

The farmer leaders, however, thanked Priyanka for attending the final prayers of the slain farmers and extending her support to the ongoing protests by them against the new farm laws.

A large number of farmers from UP, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Haryana and other parts of the country had reached Lakhimpur Kheri to attend the final prayers of the slain farmers.

The ‘antim ardas’ was being held in a field close to the spot where eight people, including four farmers, were killed in the violence during protests by the farmers against the union minister, who had threatened them with dire consequences if they continued their agitation against the farm laws.

The Morcha leaders slammed the BJP government for not sacking the minister. ”It is shocking that the minister continues to be in the cabinet…he should be dismissed forthwith,” said a Morcha leader.

The leader also accused the UP government of trying to ‘shield’ Ashish Mishra, who was arrested six days after the incident. (Agencies)

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