ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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No Ordinary Road Rage

The incident in Lakhimpur Kheri marks a violent disregard for dissent and endangers democracy.


Three cars sped through protesting farmers as they marched. As media reports show, this “road rage” killed eight people, four of them farmers. Reports indicate that arrests have been made and summons were sent to the son of a union minister, who was allegedly present during the incident. Some reports suggest that there were gunshots fired. These scenes and the aftermath come straight from Lakhimpur Kheri in Uttar Pradesh (UP), where the farmers’ protests seem to have been forced into a very violent and brutal juncture. The opposition leaders, despite attempts at delay and obstruction from the state administration, have managed to find their way to the protesting farmers and the families of the dead. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court has taken suo motu cognisance, ordering an action taken report from the administration. The state government has announced a judicial commission led by a retired high court judge to inquire into the events that unfolded. And, amidst all this, Rakesh Tikait arrived at the scene, and reports suggest that some kind of peace has been restored between the Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM) leader and the representative of the state government. However, the mood in the area as well as among the protesting farmers in different parts of the country seems to be getting tense.

The immediate response, particularly of those in the ruling dispensation, reveals the insolence that underlines such an action. Apart from denying any allegations of wrongdoing or complicity in the act, the “voices of power” are proclaiming a conspiracy comprising of anti-national elements who apparently initiated the violence. While fresh videos seem to clearly show how the three cars literally mowed through an unknowing marching group, the violence cannot be left to the usual murmurs of displeasure alone. There is a lot at stake here.

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Updated On : 16th Oct, 2021
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