Lakhimpur violence: Decision to challenge bail to Ashish Mishra pending consideration: UP to SC : The Tribune India

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Lakhimpur violence: Decision to challenge bail to Ashish Mishra pending consideration: UP to SC

In its reply affidavit filed on the appeal filed by family members of the victims of Lakhimpur Keri violence, the state government said that the Allahabad High Court order as well as its counter affidavit would demonstrate it has vehemently opposed the bail application of Mishra

Lakhimpur violence: Decision to challenge bail to Ashish Mishra pending consideration: UP to SC

Ashish Mishra at the Crime Branch office in Lakhimpur Kheri. — PTI



PTI

New Delhi, March 29

The Uttar Pradesh government on Tuesday told the Supreme Court that decision to challenge the grant of bail by the Allahabad High Court to Ashish Mishra, son of Union minister Ajay Mishra, in connection with the Lakhimpur Kheri violence that left eight people, including four farmers, dead is pending consideration before the relevant authorities.

In its reply affidavit filed on the appeal filed by family members of the victims of Lakhimpur Keri violence, the state government said that the Allahabad High Court order as well as its counter affidavit would demonstrate it has vehemently opposed the bail application of Mishra.

“The same clearly demonstrates that the Respondent No.1 (Ashish Mishra) Bail application was vehemently opposed by the State, and any averments to the contrary in the SLP are completely false and merit to be rejected. Furthermore, the Impugned Order being of February 10, 2022, the limitation period against the same is still running, and the decision to file SLP against the same, is pending consideration before the relevant authorities”, it said.

The state government said that an incident of March 10, in which one of the witnesses in the Lakhimpur violence case was beaten by some miscreants, resulting in the registration of Case is sought to be “conflated and connected” with the farmer deaths of October 3, 2021.

“In this regard, it is submitted that the investigation of said incident of March 10, 2022 and Case Crime No…has revealed that the same is not related at all to the FIRs pertaining to the October 3, 2021 incident”, it said.

Giving detail about the recent incident, the state government said that as per the Petitioners’ case, one Diljot Singh, son of Jarnail Singh, was beaten by miscreants on March 10, 2022.

“As per the FIR registered by Diljot Singh, the attackers threatened him saying that the Respondent No. I (Ashish Mishra) is out on bail and the ruling party has also won the election and that they will see to him. However, during the course of investigation, Diljot Singh’s Gunner Manoj Singh (assigned to protect him as per this Court’s Orders) as well as 3 independent eye witnesses to the incident were examined, and all 4 persons stated that the incident occurred suddenly due to an altercation between Diljot Singh and the attacker over the throwing of Gulal (dry colours of Holi) on him”, the affidavit said.

Referring to the Section 161 CrpC statements of the state government said that as per the eye witnesses, on March 10, at around 8.15 pm, Diljot Singh came towards the Primary School near Danga, on a tractor trolley laden with sugarcane.

“At that time, some people were playing with Holi Gulal near the school and threw the Gulal on Diljot Singh as well. When Diljot Singh objected, an altercation broke out between him and the others, in which one of the miscreants hit him with a belt and others kicked and punched him...contrary to the case out forth in the FIR registered by Diljot Singh, all the witnesses were ad idem on the fact that none of the miscreants mentioned either Ashish Mishra or the ruling party winning the elections, and that the incident was a result of a sudden altercation due to the dispute over Holi Gulal, and had no relation to the incident of October 3, 2021”, it said.

The state government said it is to be noted that even the FIR itself does not mention the presence of Mishra or other accused in Case on the scene.

“Thus, it is humbly submitted that it is evident that the incident of March 10, 2022, the subject matter of Case…has absolutely no relation with Case Crime No…Thus the attempt by the Petitioners in the SLP and application for additional documents to conflate and connect the two incidents is completely unwarranted”, it said, adding that all the named accused in the incident of March 10 were arrested on March 11 and they were released on bail on March 14.

The state government said that as per the orders of the court the families of all the victims of Lakhimpur violence case and all the witnesses, whose Section 164 statements were recorded, have been receiving continuous security under the Witness Protection Scheme of 2018.

“Each witness has one armed police gunner. The families of the victims have one armed gunner each, along with permanent security guard and continuous monitoring through installed CCTV cameras, as well as barrier duty at their residence. A total of 98 people have been provided security, of which 79 are from Kheri district, 17 from outlying districts and 2 from the State of Uttarakhand”, it said.

On March 16, the top court had sought responses of the UP government and Ashish Mishra, on a plea challenging the grant of bail to him. It had also directed the state government to ensure protection of witnesses after counsel, appearing for farmers, referred to the attack on a key witness on March 10.

On October 3 last year, eight people were killed in Lakhimpur Kheri during violence that erupted when farmers were protesting against Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya’s visit to the area.

Four farmers were mowed down by an SUV following which the driver and two BJP workers were allegedly lynched by angry farmers.

A journalist also died in the violence that triggered outrage among opposition parties and farmer groups agitating over the Centre’s now-repealed agriculture laws.

#ashish mishra #lakhimpur violence


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