The Supreme Court today criticised the Yogi Adityanath government over the handling of the Lakhimpur violence – which has triggered nationwide outrage as eight people, including four farmers were killed
on Sunday – with the state government admitting that “not enough has been done”.
“We are not satisfied with the action taken by the UP government so far. We expect responsible government and police. The allegations are very serious, including gunshot injuries,” Chief Justice NV Ramana said during the hearing.
“What is the message that you are sending? Even in normal circumstances… will the police not go immediately and arrest the accused. Things have not proceeded the way they should have. It appears to be only words and not actions,” the Chief Justice further said in a sharp rebuke.
Union Minister Ajay Mishra’s son, Ashish, is an accused in the murder case. Farmers have said in an FIR that he drove into a gathering of protesters amid a peaceful black flag demonstration on Sunday. He is yet to be arrested and he skipped the questioning in the case today; he was summoned for the first time amid growing outrage and allegations by opposition leaders that he is being shielded.
“Treat the accused the same way we treat the other persons in other cases,” the Chief Justice said today while expressing apprehension over the handling of the case by the state government and the probe being transferred to the CBI.
“We have seen details of the SIT (Special Investigation Team). You have DIG, Superintendent of Police, circle officers. All these are local people. This is what happens when all are local people.”
To UP government’s legal counsel Harish Salve, the Chief Justice said: “The CBI can also not be given the matter for reasons you understand…because of the persons involved.”
During the hearing, Justice Surya Kant underlined: “Law must take its course against whosoever is involved.”