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Son of farmer killed in Lakhimpur violence says will contest next LS poll against Teni

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Lakhimpur Kheri, Feb 05: The son of a farmer who was killed in Lakhimpur Kheri incident wants to settle scores with union minister Ajay Mishra Teni in the political field. Farmer Nachhatar Singh's elder son Jagdeep Singh said he wants to contest against Teni in the 2024 general election.

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He said he has declined offers of the Samajwadi Party and the Congress to fight current assembly polls, and has instead asked them to field him in the Lok Sabha polls. Teni's son Ashish Mishra has been declared the main accused in the chargesheet filed by Special Investigation (SIT) in the incident that took place on October 3 last year. Mishra is currently in jail in connection with the matter. In the incident that shocked the nation, four farmers, including Nachhatar Singh, were crushed to death under the wheels of a convoy of cars, including the one belonging to the Minister.

Four others, including a journalist, were also killed when the convoy ran over a group of farmers demonstrating against the visit of deputy chief minister Keshav Prasad Maurya to Teni's native place for a programme. Jagdeep Singh, a resident of Namdar Purwa village, told PTI that he was offered ticket from Dhaurahara assembly segment in Lakhimpur Kheri district, but he did not accept it.

''SP and Congress insisted that I should contest from Dhaurahara seat but I told them that I would not fight a small battle. Give me a ticket for Lok Sabha elections in 2024. I will fight directly against Teni. If I have to fight, I will fight it properly,'' he said.

The 31-year-old said no one in his family has a political background. ''I am not a supporter of anyone including SP, BSP, and Congress. At present we are standing with farmer leader Tejinder Singh Virk in the elections. "He is fighting our battle as well. Wherever he is fighting from, we will stand with him,'' he said.

Virk was among those injured in the violence. Recently he was seen with Akhilesh Yadav at a press conference in Lucknow. Jagdeep thanked the opposition parties and said if there was no opposition, then the Tikoniya incident would have been shown as an accident. ''If the opposition had not stood up and there was no pressure from the farmers' union, no action would have taken place in this matter,'' he said.

He said Teni was not removed by the party because of Brahmin vote bank. ''Teni not being removed from the post of Union Minister of State for Home is a very big election issue. The government is not removing Teni out of fear of losing Brahmin votes. "As long as he remains in the post of Minister of State for Home, justice cannot be done to us,'' Jagdeep said.

Teni is a second term BJP MP from Kheri.

Asked how big an issue the Tikoniya incident is in terms of assembly elections, Jagdeep said, ''Only time will tell, but it is certain that if people do not stand united against this incident in the elections, then the farmers will be crushed under the jeep. Those with such a mentality will be encouraged.'' Out of the four deceased farmers, Nachhatar Singh of Dhaurhara, and Lovepreet Singh, a resident of Palia, belonged to Lakhimpur Kheri district. The other two farmers hailed from neighbouring Bahraich.

Sikhs of the area are angry in particular with the minister over the incident.

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