The Congress on Thursday said if BJP leader Varun Gandhi is honest about his fight for farmers, he should quit his party and take to the streets in support of the protesting peasants.
Congress leader Alka Lamba also said Varun Gandhi would be mistaken if he feels that he will be given a ministerial berth in the next cabinet expansion.
“I would suggest to Varun Gandhi that if he has a little self-respect left and if he is honest about his fight for the farmers who have been crushed in Lakhimpur Kheri, then instead of fighting the battle on Twitter, he should come out of the BJP, take to the streets, raise his voice and strengthen it. But if he feels he will be included in the cabinet in its next expansion, then I feel he is mistaken. He must decide now,” she told reporters.
Asked if she is inviting the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader to join the Congress, Lamba said, “I am no one to give any invitation to him, it will be Varun Gandhi’s decision.”
Varun Gandhi shared a video clip purportedly of the Lakhimpur Kheri incident on Twitter on Thursday showing an SUV belonging to the convoy of a BJP leader crushing protesting farmers.
“The video is crystal clear. Protestors cannot be silenced through murder. There has to be accountability for the innocent blood of farmers that has been spilled and justice must be delivered before a message of arrogance and cruelty enters the minds of every farmer,” the Pilibhit MP of the BJP said.
The 37-second video clip showed a speeding Mahindra Thar running over people. Two SUVs — one black-coloured and another white — were seen following the Thar, while there was a commotion of people shouting and crying in the video.
Eight people were killed in the Lakhimpur Kheri violence on Sunday. Of the eight, four were farmers, who were allegedly knocked down by vehicles driven by BJP workers travelling to welcome Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya to an event in the area.
The other four were two BJP workers, a driver of Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Kumar Mishra and Raman Kashyap, a journalist working for a private television channel.
An FIR under section 302 of the IPC (murder) has been registered against the Union minister’s son, Ashish Mishra, and others in connection with the incident but no arrest has been made so far.