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New Delhi: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Varun Gandhi on Thursday posted on Twitter a short clip of a speech by former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee from 1980, in which he warns the then Indira Gandhi government against repressing farmers and extends his support to them.
Gandhi tweeted, “Wise words from a big-hearted leader…”
In the video clip, Vajpayee is heard telling a gathering that farmers cannot be intimidated.
The captions to the video translate Vajpayee’s speech, in Hindi, as such, “I want to warn the government against intimidating these farmers. Don’t try to scare us. These farmers are not going to be scared. We don’t want to use the farmer’s movements for politics. We support their genuine demands and the if the government will try to scare us, or misuse the laws, or disregard the peaceful movement of farmers, then we will also become a part of this farmers’ protest in their support.”
Wise words from a big-hearted leader… pic.twitter.com/xlRtznjFAx
— Varun Gandhi (@varungandhi80) October 14, 2021
The latter part of Vajpayee’s speech, about political parties supporting farmers’ movements, is also pertinent today. The BJP has repeatedly claimed that the farmers are being ‘misled‘ by opposition parties such as the Congress despite the fact that the movement against the three Central farm laws has been spearheaded by the Samyukt Kisan Morcha, an umbrella body of farmers’ unions.
Gandhi’s latest move comes after he shared multiple tweets condemning the Lakhimpur Kheri violence in which eight people were killed, including four farmers, two BJP workers, Union minister Ajay Mishra’s driver and a journalist. The four farmers were killed after a car allegedly driven by Mishra’s son Ashish Mishra mowed down a group of protesting farmers. The others were lynched, according to reports.
Sharing a video that shows the car ramming the farmers, Gandhi called it “murder” and demanded accountability.
लखीमपुर खीरी की हृदय-विदारक घटना में शहीद हुए किसानों को श्रद्धांजलि अर्पित करता हूँ। इस प्रकरण में उत्तर प्रदेश के मुख्यमंत्री जी से सख्त कार्यवाही करने का निवेदन करता हूँ। pic.twitter.com/e2tE1x4z3T
— Varun Gandhi (@varungandhi80) October 4, 2021
The three-time member of parliament from the Pilibhit constituency in Uttar Pradesh and his mother Maneka Gandhi, also an MP, were dropped from the BJP’s national executive committee days after the younger Gandhi shared a series of tweets condemning the incident.
Varun is one of the few BJP leaders who have vocally expressed their support to the slain farmers ever since the Lakhimpur Kheri incident captured national attention.
According to NDTV, he also wrote to chief minister Yogi Adityanath to demand a CBI probe and Rs 1 crore compensation for the dead farmers’ families.
After Union minister Ajay Mishra had alleged that some Khalistani elements were present where the incident happened, Varun, without naming the minister, had responded to the comment saying it was an attempt to give communal colour to the event and that his actions are extremely dangerous for national unity.
(With PTI inputs)