An SUV that was destroyed when violence erupted during farmers' protest in Lakhimpur Kheri | PTI Photo
An SUV that was destroyed when violence erupted during farmers' protest in Lakhimpur Kheri | PTI Photo
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Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh Police Wednesday arrested a man believed to be a friend of Ashish Mishra, Union MoS Ajay Mishra’s son and an accused in the Lakhimpur Kheri violence, as part of their investigation in the case.

Sources in police said Ankit Das owns one of the cars in the minister’s convoy, which allegedly ploughed into protesting farmers at Lakhimpur Kheri on 3 October. Eight people were killed in the violence, and four people — including Ashish Mishra — have been arrested so far.

Mishra’s bail plea was rejected by a chief judicial magistrate Wednesday, and he was sent to police custody for three days. 

Das, arrested by the monitoring committee probing the case, is the nephew of the late former Union minister Akhilesh Das Gupta, who died 12 April 2017. 

UP Additional Director General (Law & Order) Prashant Kumar told ThePrint that Das had been summoned to the Crime Branch office at Lakhimpur Wednesday.

“After police sent a notice to him in the morning, Das arrived at the reserved police lines in Lakhimpur and reached the Crime Branch office located there. He was arrested by the monitoring committee probing the case. He was arrested in a similar way as the accused Ashish Mishra,” he added.

While he didn’t dwell on the circumstances of Das’ arrest, sources in police said a car owned by him was in Mishra’s convoy on the day of the incident. Das, a source added, owned the black Fortuner SUV behind the Thar that allegedly ran over protesters.

A staffer of Das, Shekhar Bharti, has been remanded in three-days’ police custody too, the source added.

Prosecution lawyer S.P. Yadav said Das has been “sent to 3-days’ police custody — from October 14-17 — and judicial custody till 22 October”.

(Edited by Sunanda Ranjan)

Also Read: Pain, anger in Lakhimpur Kheri as dead farmers’ kin cry ‘cold-blooded murder, Yogi’s gunda raj’


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