Lakhimpur Kheri, UP farmer murder, 5,000 page chargesheet

Eight people were killed in this incident in Lakhimpur Kheri in Uttar Pradesh last year.

Lucknow: The Special Investigation Team of Uttar Pradesh Police probing the Lakhimpur Kheri incident has submitted a 5,000-page chargesheet to a local court.

Thousands of chargesheet sheets were brought to the Chief Judicial Magistrate’s court at Lakhimpur Kheri this morning by the Special Investigation Team or SIT in a large trunk with two locks.

“Yes, the charge sheet has been filed,” senior prosecution officer SP Yadav told reporters in Lakhimpur.

Union Minister Ajay Mishra’s jailed son Ashish Mishra is the prime accused in the murder of four farmers and a journalist in Lakhimpur Kheri in October last year. A total of eight people died.

After four farmers and a journalist were allegedly crushed by an SUV driven by Ashish Mishra, violence broke out in which three more, including two BJP workers, were killed.

In a video that has shocked the nation and inciting anger on social media, an SUV is seen running at full speed on farmers.

The UP police filed an FIR the next day naming Ashish Mishra and 12 others as accused of murder, but it took them a week and Supreme Court intervention to arrest the Union minister’s son.

Last month, the SIT told the designated local court that the killing of the farmers and the journalist was a “planned conspiracy” with intent to commit murder and was not a case of death by negligence.

The charges of rash driving against Ashish Mishra and others should be revised, the police team probing the case wrote to the judge, adding that the charge of attempt to murder and the charge of voluntarily causing hurt should be added.

Two FIRs were registered by the Lakhimpur police – one by the families of the deceased farmers, who named Ashish Mishra as the main accused; The second was by BJP worker Sumit Jaiswal in Lakhimpur against unknown farmers.

Mr. Jaiswal alleged that the farmers instigated the violence. In the viral video, Mr. Jaiswal was seen running away from one of the SUVs that hit the farmers. He was later arrested as a co-accused in the case involving Ashish Mishra.

The UP government had to face many tough questions during the Supreme Court hearing a petition on the matter last month. The Supreme Court has directed the SIT to complete the investigation at the earliest. It also added three Indian Police Service officers to the team – who are not from Uttar Pradesh, although they have been allocated to the UP cadre. This was done out of concern that local policemen would manipulate the investigation.

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