New Delhi, April 23: Denying allegations that Delhi Police did not do enough to save Rajasthan farmer Gajendra Singh, Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday clarified how the police was right in its approach in dealing with the crisis.
Making a statement in the Lok Sabha, the minister said the incident was shameful and all concerned must put their heads together to look into the issues concerning the country's farmers.
"The police informed the control room as they had to get ladders to climb the tree. They also asked people to stop clapping," he said, adding that the crowd, even after being asked not to do so kept on clapping.
The home minister said some people then climbed the tree and as they tried to get hold of the farmer, he fell off.
"He was taken to hospital in a police van where the doctors declared him dead," Singh said, giving the sequence of events that led to the tragedy.
He, however, did not say anything against the AAP, which had accused Delhi Police of being responsible for the death.
The Delhi Police report directly to the home minister.
The minister also said the government and the opposition must introspect why the condition of farmers had not improved even so many years after independence.
It was unfortunate that successive governments had failed to improve the conditions of villages and farmers across the country, the minister said.
Singh made the statement amid outrage in the house over the suicide on Wednesday by Rajasthan farmer Gajendra Singh, who hanged himself from a tree at an AAP rally called to denounce the land ordinance.
"We all have to think over these issues... why the condition of the villages and farmers was not improving."
Reading out official data, he said that in 1950-51, farmers contributed 55 percent of India's total GDP. This had fallen to 14 percent although 58 percent of the population was still involved in agriculture.
Sixty percent of the population was covered by food security programmes, revealing how bad the condition of the people was in villages, he said.
Earlier the minister condoled the death of Gajendra Singh.
"I condole the death of the farmer on behalf of the entire government," Singh said.
Singh also appreciated the leaders who said the issue should not be politicized, saying he agrees with it.
The home minister said the investigation into the suicide had been handed over to the Crime Branch of Delhi Police which had been told to submit its report at the earliest.