Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Saturday said that she will be back to visit the villagers at Umbha in Sonbhadra, after meeting the families of firing victims following a night of detention in Uttar Pradesh.
The Congress leader told media: “My objective has been served as I have met the victims of the firing. I am still under detention, let's see what the administration says.” She added that the Congress party will give a compensation of Rs 10 lakh to the kin of those who died in the incident.
She also demanded the following from the Yogi Adityanath government: Rs. 25 lakh compensation for the affected families, a fast track trial, land titles for the tribals, security for the affected families and withdrawal of case against the villagers in the last few years over land disputes.
An NDTV report also quoted Ms Gandhi taking a dig at the Centre with this quip, "The responsibility for the Sonbhadra massacre is with the Yogi government and not with Nehru."
Gandhi, who had spent Friday night at a guesthouse in Mirzapur, said that the Sonbhadra victims had come on their own today but were being prevented from doing so by the police and administration. She also urged media persons to put pressure on the administration to let the kin meet her.
Anurag Patel, DM of Mirzapur clarified, “Priyanka Gandhi was not arrested but was stopped from going to Sonbhadra since section 144 was imposed there. She was free to go anywhere except Sonbhadra.”
"The families of those who were killed and injured have come from Sonbhadra to meet me on their own. Two relatives of the victims have come here to meet me but 15 others are not allowed to meet me. Even I am not allowed to meet them. I do not understand what the Uttar Pradesh government and police administration want," Gandhi said while speaking to media persons here.
She further told media persons here, "Bhagwan jane inki mansikta kya hai? Aap thoda dabwav banayiya, unhe aana dijiye. Mere pichhe pade hain." (God knows what their the thought process is? You please put pressure, let them (kin of victims) come. They are after me.)
Finally met the families of the Ubbha massacre. What they have been through is unimaginably brutal and unjust. Every single Indian should stand with them in the name of humanity. pic.twitter.com/232oJITUjj— Priyanka Gandhi Vadra (@priyankagandhi) July 20, 2019
Earlier in the day, Priyanka met senior Uttar Pradesh administration officials and said she will not leave until and unless she is permitted to meet the victims' families.
"It has been 24 hours. I am not going to leave until and unless I am allowed to meet the victims of Sonbhadra's firing case," Priyanka said.
Congress leader said she has asked the police to allow her to visit Sonbhadra with two persons as that would not violate Section 144 imposed there, which restrict the movement of more than four persons in an area.
"I told police administration that I would go to meet victims affected by firing in Sonbhadra with two people and they can accompany me. But they did not listen to me. They asked me at night to go away from here. But I want to meet the victims' families. Let the police do whatever they want to do," she said.
The party workers sitting on dharna with her have maintained that the fight will continue till she is allowed to go and meet the victims of the firing incident.
On Friday, Congress general secretary Priyanka was detained on her way to meet the kin of those killed in the firing incident citing imposition of Section 144 in the area, which prohibits movement of more than four people in the area. She was escorted to Mirzapur by the Uttar Pradesh Police from Varanasi.
. @priyankagandhi ji meeting families of victims of #SonbhadraMassacre— All India Mahila Congress (@MahilaCongress) July 20, 2019
The mass murder of the family members of these Adivasis is a blot on law and order situation of Uttar Pradesh#PriyankaFightsForPeople pic.twitter.com/pY67kvuxJK
Priyanka had said that she wanted to meet the victims and was even prepared to go to jail for that.
"If the government wants to put me in jail for meeting the victims, I am fully prepared," Priyanka had tweeted.
She further said that she will not pay the bail amount at any cost. "I will not furnish the bail amount; I will not pay a single penny. I had said if Section 144 is imposed in Sonbhadra, I won't violate it, 2 people will go. But the action was taken. I have been kept here for the last 7 hours. I would not move without meeting them."
The Sonbhadra firing incident took place in Ubbha village of Ghorawal when the village head went to take possession of his land purchased two years ago. However, he met with opposition from the villagers which triggered the firing allegedly by his aides leading to 10 deaths.
(With inputs from ANI)