A Bench comprising Chief Justice Of India NV Ramana, Justice Surya Kant and Justice Hima Kohli of the Supreme Court on Thursday directed the Uttar Pradesh Government to file a status report by Friday regarding the investigation in the Lakhimpur Kheri violence.
The court passed the order while taking up a PIL in the case, and said that the status report should mention details of the accused and whether or not they have been arrested. It is notable that that case was earlier registered as a suo motu case and later changed to PIL. Today the court had clarified that it had asked the registry to file a PIL, but due to miscommunication, it was registered as a suo motu case.
Chief Justice Nuthalapati Venkata Ramana said, “Two advocates wrote a letter to the court on Tuesday, we directed our Registry to register the letter as PIL but due to miscommunication, they registered it as a suo motu matter.”
Two senior lawyers of Uttar Pradesh Shiv Kumar Tripathi and C S Panda on Tuesday had written a letter to the CJI requesting a court-monitored inquiry into the incident. They also urged CJI to treat their letter as PIL.
Violence had flared up in Lakhimpur Kheri on Sunday (October 3) during farmers’ protest leading to the death of eight people including four farmers whereas two BJP workers, a journalist and a driver were also murdered in the incident.
The court directed the government to take the best care of the mother of deceased Lovepreet Singh who is said to be unwell due to shock. Nevertheless, the family of Lovepreet Singh in a statement has said the government and the local administration have extended all kinds of support and they don’t want anybody to use them for political gains.
Advocate General of Uttar Pradesh Garima Prasad said that the entire incident was unfortunate. The state government has formed SIT and as well as a judicial probe has been ordered.
Following the incident, FIR was lodged at Tikunia police station under sections 302 (murder), 304-A (causing death due to reckless driving), 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 147 (punishment for rioting), 279 (rash driving endangering human life), 338 (causing grievous hurt to any person by doing any act so rashly or negligently as to endanger human life).
Notably, Ashish Mishra, son of Union minister of state for home Ajay Kumar Mishra Teni, was booked by Uttar Pradesh police in the case. He was accused of mowing down protesters, causing the deaths of four. However, the minister has clarified that his son was not involved in the incident as he was not present at the spot. The minister had also met the Union Minister of Home and Affairs Amit Shah on Wednesday and clarified his position. However, farmers insist that they saw Ashish Mishra at the spot during the incident.