Can't Compare Lakhimpur, Bengal Post-Poll Violence: Minister Kiren Rijiju

Eight people were killed - four farmers were allegedly run over and four people in a convoy of BJP workers who were lynched - on Sunday

Can't Compare Lakhimpur, Bengal Post-Poll Violence: Minister Kiren Rijiju

Kiren Rijiju alleged that the government machinery is not doing its job in West Bengal

Siliguri/Jalpaiguri:

Union minister Kiren Rijiju on Tuesday claimed that the violence in Lakhimpur Kheri of Uttar Pradesh that left eight dead and the post-poll brutality in West Bengal cannot be compared as the former is an accident and the latter planned.

Mr Rijiju, a BJP leader, also alleged that the government machinery is not doing its job in West Bengal while the ruling Trinamool Congress has taken the law and order in its hands after winning the assembly elections held earlier this year.

"What happened in UP is an accident and the state government will take action. But in West Bengal, it is planned violence carried out by the ruling party. They cannot be compared," the Union law minister told a press conference at Siliguri in north Bengal.

Eight people were killed - four farmers were allegedly run over and four people in a convoy of BJP workers who were lynched - on Sunday as violence erupted during a farmers' protest in Lakhimpur Kheri district in Uttar Pradesh.

On an order of the Calcutta High Court, the CBI and a Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the West Bengal Police are currently probing incidents of violence that took place after the assembly election results were announced on May 2. It has been alleged that TMC workers had attacked BJP activists and their family members.

The Union law minister came to north Bengal to take part in the BJP's public outreach programme 'Seva aur Samarpan Abhiyan'. He cleaned a road with a broom at Jalpaiguri town.

"Have you seen any state where the government machinery is not doing its job while the (ruling) political party is taking over it? This is what we have seen in West Bengal," he told reporters in reply to a question on the law and order situation in the state.

"In the development index, Western and Southern states are ahead of West Bengal and the Northeastern states. After independence, the Western, Northern and Southern states made fast progress, while Bengal and the NE states have been lagging behind," he said at a programme in Jalpaiguri.

Since independence, injustice was meted out to Bengal and the NE region by successive governments in these states, he claimed.

The development process in the region got momentum with improvement in connectivity during the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government at the Centre but it was interrupted after the Congress-led UPA came to power in 2004, Mr Rijiju said.

He said the development of the North-eastern states is on the priority list of the current BJP-led NDA government.

The Union law minister said the Centre is keen on boosting infrastructure for the judiciary to make sure that poor people can get justice.

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