- Priyanka Gandhi spent the night at a guest house in UP's Mirzapur
- The Congress leader has been detained for the last 24 hours
- She reached UP on Friday morning
Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, after meeting the families of the Sonbhadra shootout victims following a night of detention and high drama in Uttar Pradesh, has decided to return home to Delhi, but with a promise that she will return. "I'll be back," she said outside the guest house in Mirzapur district where she had been taken by the police on Friday.
"My objective has been served as I have met them (victims of Sonbhadra firing). I am still under detention, let's see what the administration says," Priyanka Gandhi told reporters.
A UP official said the Congress leader is "free to go anywhere" but the site of the shootout in Sonbhadra, where 10 people were killed over a land dispute earlier this week.
Priyanka Gandhi had this morning tried to move out of the guest house, saying she would not leave without meeting the victims, but was not allowed to by the police. However, when the family members of the shootout victims arrived, the police decided to let them enter the guest house.
Taking a dig at the state government, Ms Gandhi said, "The responsibility for the Sonbhadra massacre is with the Yogi government and not with Nehru." She also said the Congress will compensate the families affected by the shootout with Rs 10 lakh each.
She also made five demands to the state government: Rs 25 lakh compensation for the affected families, fast track court for trial in Sonbhadra case, land titles for the tribals, security for the affected families and withdrawal of case against the villagers in the last few years over land dispute.
The 47-year-old Congress leader had been prevented by the UP police to meet the families yesterday and was taken to a guest house in Mirzapur. In a series of late-night tweets, Priyanka Gandhi said senior police and government officials had come to meet her around midnight, asking her to leave without meeting the families.
"I told them clearly that I did not come here to break any laws but came only to meet the affected families. I have told them I won't go without meeting the affected families," she had tweeted.
Visuals showed Ms Gandhi sitting with party workers in the dark after a power outage at the Mirzapur guest house. The Congress party workers, who were with her, alleged that the district administration was doing this to force her to leave the place, news agency ANI reported.
A Trinamool Congress delegation too was stopped this morning at the Varanasi airport when they were on their way to Sonbhadra, said party leader Derek O'Brien.
Earlier this week, 10 people were killed and over 24 injured in a village in Sonbhadra when a village chief, Yagya Dutt, and his associates, fired on a group of tribal farmers over a land dispute.
On Friday, Priyanka Gandhi landed at Varanasi, the constituency of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, where she went to a hospital to see those wounded in the Sonbhadra massacre. Later, she was stopped when she was on her way to a village in Sonbhadra, about 80 km away, after reports emerged that gatherings had been banned at the district.
Priyanka Gandhi's decision to visit Sonbhadra was seen to indicate that she planned to keep an intense focus on UP in the run-up to state polls in 2022. This is her second visit to UP since the national election, in which the Congress could manage just one of 80 seats despite a high-profile campaign by the Gandhi siblings.
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