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Lakhimpur Kheri killings: Court on why accused son of Union Minister got bail | Points

By Saima Siddiqui 
Updated Date

Lakhimpur Kheri: Bail granted to accused, Ashish Mishra, who also happens to be the son of BJP’s Union Minister Ajay Mishra Teni, surely stirred a lot of resentment among people, and the families of those who were deliberately crushed under his car while protesting against Centre’s black ‘farm laws’. But what really bothered everyone was the high court’s ruling where the judiciary not only questioned the charges against the prime accused but also rejected the police probe in one of the cold-blooded murder case where a racing SUV was intentionally rolled over eight protesters, including four farmers, last year in Uttar Pradesh’s Lakhimpur Kheri.

Also Read :- Lakhimpur violence: UP govt tells SC to have 'Vehemently opposed' Ashish Mishra's bail plea

Here are key points to this big story:

-The Allahabad High Court on Thursday raised questions on some of the charges listed in police investigation against Ashish Mishra, including firing at protesters. “Considering the facts and circumstances of the case in toto, it is evident that as per the FIR, the role of firing was assigned to the applicant (Ashish Mishra) for killing the protesters, but during the course of investigation, no such firearm injuries were found either on the body of any of the deceased or on the body of any injured person,” the court observed.

-The court said Ashish Mishra is accused of inciting the SUV driver to run over farmers. “Thereafter, the prosecution alleged that the applicant provoked the driver of the vehicle for crushing the protesters, however, the driver along with two others, who were in the vehicle, had been killed by the protesters.”

-Ashish Mishra, the court said, appeared before the Investigating officer when he was summoned and a charge sheet has already been filed. “In such circumstances, this Court is of the view that the applicant is entitled to be released on bail,” said the high court.

Also Read :- Lakhimpur violence: SC to hear plea for cancellation of Ashish Mishra's bail on March 11

-The high court said it “could not shut its eyes to the killing of three persons in the Thar SUV, including the driver, who were killed by the protesters”. Photographs “clearly revealed the brutality of the protesters”, the court said, naming those killed as Hariom Mishra, Shubham Mishra and Shyam Sunder.

-Stating that only four accused had been charged, the court further said that the organisers of the protest must help investigators with giving details of others seen beating up the BJP workers.

For the unversed, a video was widely circulated on the internet that showed an SUV ramming farmers and crushing them without breaking speed. The SUV was allegedly drove by Ashish Mishra which mercilessly mowed down eight people at Lakhimpur Kheri that day on October 3, last year including four farmers and a journalist. After the farmers were run over, violence broke out in which three more, including two BJP workers, were killed.

Now as bail has been granted for Ashish Mishra, it has sparked strong political reactions with the opposition reviving allegations that the ruling BJP is going all out to protect its own. Priyanka Gandhi raised it at a rally and asked: “Why has the minister not been sacked?”

Trinamool Congress MP Mahua Moitra also questioned how Ashish Mishra qualified for bail. “3 basic principles of bail are that accused should NOT be able to: 1. Intimidate witnesses 2. Destroy evidence 3. Be flight risk. How does Ashish Mishra satisfy bail condition 1? Sitting minister’s son, arrested only after 3 days, in election season?” she tweeted.

Also Read :- MoS Ajay Mishra casts his vote amid massive protest over Lakhimpur violence

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