The PM has neither shown any remorse nor expressed any grief over the incident: Jayant Patil
The Nationalist Congress Party on Sunday chastised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for failing to condemn the death of farmers in the Lakhimpur Kheri violence in Uttar Pradesh, with NCP State president Jayant Patil stating that Mr. Modi’s “continued silence” over the incident was astonishing.
“He [Mr. Modi] has neither shown any remorse, nor expressed any grief, nor condemned the incident in which farmers were crushed to death,” said Mr. Patil, who is the State Water Resources Minister in the tripartite Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) coalition Government of the Shiv Sena, the NCP and the Congress.
Speaking in Sangli district, Mr. Patil said the Centre was quick to stifle any dissent expressed by non-BJP parties of its anti-farmer policies.
“If voices are raised against the government today, the Central Government will unleash probe agencies upon other party leaders. Even though there is not the slightest evidence against any of its leaders, the BJP has strained every sinew to defame the MVA government in Maharashtra,” he said.
Mr. Patil claimed that when NCP supremo Sharad Pawar likened the Lakhimpur incident to the Jallianwala Bagh massacre, the Centre promptly began investigating firms linked to or owned by Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar’s kin by springing the Income Tax department in a bid to discredit him.
“The Central probe agencies, be it the I-T or the Enforcement Directorate [ED] are being guided by the BJP and a planned smear campaign is under way in the State. It is solely with this intention that the raids against Ajit Pawar are taking place,” alleged Mr. Patil.
The I-T raids against firms linked to Mr. Pawar’s kin continued for the fourth successive day on Sunday.
With the MVA gearing up for the State-wide shutdown called by the three parties over the Lakhimpur Kheri violence on Monday, Mr. Patil said that if the Central Government’s entrenched anti-farmer disposition was not protested, then the next generation of farmers would suffer.
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