Who hatched conspiracy to Lakhimpur genocide if not Ajay Mishra?

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Ajay Mishra

By Haider Abbas

The entire opposition has been on its toes, since the day, when on October 3, Minister of State for Home Affairs Ajay Mishra, son Ashish Mishra, had crushed innocent farmers by his cavalcade of SUVs in Lakhimpur Kheri, UP and now finally Special Investigation Team (SIT) report has also arrived, on December 14, clearly naming Ashish Mishra’s step of mauling down of farmers as a well-planned conspiracy to murder. He is now an accused in the case along with 13 others. It may be mentioned here, that prior to this genocide, Ajay Mishra, the father, had openly threatened that ‘he can make the farmers come to their senses in two minutes’. Farmers had been protesting against the three-black agricultural laws, brought by BJP PM Narandra Modi, since September 2020, and now Modi has withdrawn the bill.

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The video of Ashish Mishra on a killing spree is available on social media, imagine if there was no technology? Or else the mainstream media, with one or two exceptions, has been hell bent to prove from farmers if Ashish Mishra was really inside the SUV. Isn’t it not fresh, that when UP police killed Manish Kumar Gupta, in Gorakhpur on September 29- the home town of UP BJP CM Ajay Singh Bisht, the District Magistrate was ‘forcing’ the family members not to initiate legal proceedings. The same was to have happened here if not Supreme Court, had taken a suo-moto and ordered the SIT to complete the investigation expeditiously, which got done with two-and-a-half-months. The SC had appointed retired Punjab and Haryana High Court judge, Justice Rakesh Kumar Jain, to monitor the probe. The bench headed by Chief Justice NV Ramana had upgraded the SIT probing the case by incorporating three IPS officers — SB Shiradkar, Padmaja Chauhan and Preetinder Singh, who all do not belong to UP Cadre — “to preserve the faith and trust of people in the criminal administration of the justice system”. Is it not a slur on BJP government that SC took into the sensitivities and did not appoint officers from UP Cadre! The report however is now out.

There is now a national chorus, from streets to the on-going winter-session of the Parliament that Ajay Mishra be sacked, as after all the big question which begs an answer, as per the SIT report, that ‘there was a conspiracy to murder’, then who made it if not the concerned Ajay Mishra? Ajay Mishra should be rightly stripped of his portfolio and later tried under the law. He should be included in the FIR under IPC 120-B as that would unravel the whole issue as to how the protesting farmers were made to sleep-forever! 8 people were killed on October 3.

The only difference ‘then and now’ is that the onlookers had demanded for Ajay Mishra’s ouster then too, and now the SIT report has also arrived, but perhaps, those who follow BJP politics ‘through-its-veins’, it might just be a wishful thinking as Ajay Mishra in-between these days have flouting his ‘on-stage’ presence with Union Home Minister Amit Shah and is also most likely to be the Chief Guest at the Sashastra Seema Bal’s (SSB) 58th foundation day ceremony on December 20. No matter how untenable it is for the BJP and despite the unforgivable crime which he son has committed! There is of coruse, very little room left to find out, after the SIT report made public, that the guiding force, behind those horrendous murders is no one but Ajay Mishra himself. How law is ‘thrown to the wind’ is what may be called as the ‘high-wages’ of the brute majority which BJP enjoys in Parliament as well as inside UP Assembly.

The latest to add to fire is the way Ajay Mishra has misbehaved and abused the media-personnel on December 15, where he was on his way to inaugurate an Oxygen plant in Lakhimpur Kheri. He can be seen, in a video now gone viral, telling a journalist to ‘switch-off’ the phone apart from verbal abuses. He can be heard calling for his son as innocent, despite when SIT has submitted to Chief Judicial Magistrate’s court that the killings “did not happen due to negligence or callousness” and that actions of the accused were “deliberate with an intention to kill”.

If there was to have been a non-BJP government, and the minister involved was to be from SP/BSP/Congress, media was to have made ‘all-hell-loose’ and the state apparatus was to have gone ahead with an FIR, and even arrest was to have also occurred, but there no FIR as yet on it! The media-people, by and large, who have been the singing-dolls of BJP, have submitted a memorandum to the District Magistrate, as a formality, which is addressed to President Ram Nath Kovind. It has sought protection of journalists so that such an incident is not repeated. The memorandum has been signed by hundreds of journalists in Lakhimpur Kheri.

Will Ajay Mishra be forced to step-down, is for the time to see, but what however, needs a mention, is that now it is more than two years, when police and rather Delhi police which has an annual budget of 8000 Crore, had brutally attacked Jamia Millia Islamia (Delhi) students, where girls and boys were showered with batons, tear-gas and library was ransacked along with Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) in UP on December 15, 2019. This was to be followed by the nationwide anti-CAA/NRC/NPR protests and the Delhi riots in Feb/March 2020.

Who has not seen the direct-threatening of BJP Kapil Mishra, in the presence of police officials by his side, that he would not listen even to police, once after US President Donald Trump leaves on February 26, 2020? There hasn’t been an FIR lodged against him as yet, along with Anurag Thakur-the Union Minister, Parvesh Verma and the Jamia shooter Ram Bhakt Gopal. If SC had taken any suo-moto on Jamia and AMU beating, and ordered an SIT into it, it was to have acted as a balm on hapless students of both these Central Universities and may be Delhi riots were to have also been averted.

Two years later, many Muslims have ended up with a slapping of the most draconian of the laws i.e. UAPA. A sordid story altogether.

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The writer is a former UP State Information Commissioner and a political analyst.

 

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