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Ranchi: Cong’s ‘maunvrat’ at Raj Bhavan for suspension of MoS home after Lakhimpur Kheri violence

Ranchi: Congress, which is part of the ruling coalition government in Jharkhand, on Monday held a silent protest by staging a sit-in for four hours outside Raj Bhavan seeking suspension of the union home minister of state, Ajay Kumar Mishra. He along with his son Ashish, is in the middle of a political backlash for allegedly causing violence in Lakhimpur Kheri on October 3, in which eight persons had died including four farmers.

All ministers from Congress quota, MLAs and party workers attended the demonstration which was held from 10 am to 1pm as part of their nationwide campaign. The protestors held placards and banners bearing slogans against Narendra Modi government and seeking justice for the farmers.

Both Mishra and his son is charged with murder after a vehicle linked to the minister mowed down the farmers, who were said to be on peaceful protest against the new farm laws implemented by Narendra Modi government last year.

Ashish is in now police custody after the Supreme Court took suo-moto cognizance of the incident. But the Congress has upped the ante against his father (Mishra) demanding his suspension from the central cabinet.

Rajesh Thakur, president of the state Congress, said, “A person charged with the violence and murder of farmers doesn’t have the moral authority to continue as a minister. It’s ironic that the Narendra Modi government is silent over him so far. Congress will not sit calm till he is ousted from the ministry.”

He also criticized Uttar Pradesh government for attempting to muzzle voices of dissent after the incident. “AICC general secretary Priyanka Gandhi was illegally kept under detention for days. So were other leaders. Uttar Pradesh government didn’t allow Congress workers from Jharkhand to visit Lakhimpur Kheri which exposed its nervousness,” he quipped.

State agriculture minister Badal Patralekh added, “Farmers are on streets against Modi government’s farm laws since the last 10 month but there has been no concerns shown by the ruling regime to address their concerns. Rather, the BJP government both in the Centre and state is trying various tactics and defame the agitating farmers to derail a democratic protest. Why is PM and Amit Shahji (home minister) silent on Lakhimpur violence so far?.”