This Article is From Apr 23, 2015

'Nothing More Important Than Human Life,' Says PM on Farmer's Death at Delhi Rally

PM Narendra Modi makes a statment in Lok Sabha on the death of a farmer at an AAP rally in Delhi

New Delhi: "Nothing is more important than human life," Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in a short speech in the Lok Sabha today on the death a farmer from Rajasthan, who hanged himself from a tree at an Aam Aadmi Party rally in the heart of Delhi on Wednesday.

Here are the latest updates in the story:

  1. The PM said the issue of farmer suicides had been a matter of great concern for years and asked political parties to work together to find a solution. "It should be our determination to find a solution to this problem. The government will accept all suggestions," he promised. (Highlights of PM's statement)

  2. The PM spoke after Home Minister Rajnath Singh made a statement on the issue. Lawmakers from several parties had, during a discussion, demanded that the PM, who was not present in the House in the morning, make a statement.

  3. In his statement, Mr Singh backed the Delhi Police, accused by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and other leaders of his party of not attempting to save the farmer, who was on the tree for some time before he hanged himself.

  4. "Policemen at the spot alerted the control room and asked a fire tender with a long ladder, so that this person on the tree could be brought down," the Home Minister said while replying to a discussion in the Lok Sabha. He said he has ordered the Delhi Police to conduct a time-bound investigation into the Rajasthan farmer's death.

  5. The Congress' Mallikarjun Kharge demanded a judicial inquiry into the farmer's death, saying "police inquiry won't be unbiased because they are  at fault too."

  6. During the discussion, the Trinamool Congress' Saugata Roy said, "Instead of a tweet, the PM can come to the House and make a statement." Communist leader MB Brijesh said, "This isn't suicide, this is homicide... I would like to ask the PM to come out of Twitter and come see the ground reality... this is happening throughout the country."

  7. "Make farmers independent... Provide them with facilities and then there will be no need to move around the world," said Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, apparently hinting at the Prime Minister who has actively sought foreign investments during his trips abroad.

  8. PM Modi had on Wednesday tweeted, "Gajendra's death has saddened the Nation. We are all deeply shattered & disappointed. Condolences to his family." This morning, he was briefed on the farmer's death by top ministers including Rajnath Singh.

  9. A discussion hasn't begun yet in the Rajya Sabha, which has been adjourned twice since morning among noisy protests by the opposition.

  10. There have been protests outside Parliament; with Congress workers burning effigies of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. The Congress' Randeep Singh Surjewala accused Mr Kejriwal of "cruelty" for continuing with the AAP rally even after the farmer hanged himself. The AAP chief has been attacked by several political parties for making a speech.

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