"Making Excuses": Rahul Gandhi Charges At PM Over UP Farmers' Killing

Lakhimpur Kheri Violence: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said he wants Union Minister Ajay Mishra to resign.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said Lakhimpur Kheri incident is "obviously" a conspiracy. (File)

New Delhi:

Rahul Gandhi, leading the opposition charge on Wednesday against Union Minister Ajay Mishra in the Lakhimpur Kheri incident, targeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi, accusing him of shielding the minister.

"It has been said that it (Lakhimpur Kheri incident) is a conspiracy. It obviously is. Everyone knows whose son is involved. We want the minister to resign. We want a discussion in parliament. But the PM refuses. They are making excuses," the Congress leader told reporters in parliament.

Ajay Mishra, a junior Home Minister in PM Modi's government, is facing renewed demands for his resignation over the killing of farmers in Lakhimpur Kheri in Uttar Pradesh on October 3, in which his son Ashish Mishra is an accused.

A probe team has said farmers were run over at Lakhimpur Kheri, allegedly by an SUV driven by Ashish Mishra, as part of a "planned conspiracy".

Cops investigating the incident have called for new charges of "intent to commit murder" instead of "death by negligence" against Ashish Mishra, who has been in jail since October.

Several Congress leaders including Rahul Gandhi moved an adjournment motion demanding the sacking of Ajay Mishra and a discussion in parliament.

Rahul Gandhi said action taken by the Centre would depend on how much pressure the opposition puts on it.

"Depending on how much pressure we put, action will be taken (by the Centre). We will ensure that this criminal who is a minister (resigns) and justice is served to families," the Congress MP told news agency ANI.

"We had said that farm laws will be taken back. Everybody put pressure and farm laws were withdrawn," he said.

On whether Ajay Mishra should resign, Mr Gandhi told ANI, "Certainly".

Local farmers blame both the minister and his son for the violence that left eight dead, including four farmers, a local journalist and two BJP leaders.

The farmers were crushed by an SUV in the minister's convoy.

Videos showed an SUV knocking down protesters from behind. Both the Minister and his son deny the charges.

The BJP has ruled out any discussion in parliament and has so far not taken any action against the minister. On Wednesday, the party mocked Rahul Gandhi. "Rahul Gandhi never gave notice in parliament before, at least he is giving notices now. We know how Congress dealt with the 26/11 attack when P Chidambaram was Home Minister and how well the BJP is dealing with terrorism now," said Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi.