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Lakhimpur Kheri violence: India town tense after eight die in farmers’ protests

Violence broke out in a northern Indian town on Sunday during a protest against agricultural reforms. Eight people, including four protesting farmers, died in the Lakhimpur Kheri district of Uttar Pradesh. The clashes are alleged to have erupted after a car from a federal minister’s motorcade ran over two farmers. The minister denies these allegations. Opposition leaders have been stopped from visiting the victims’ families as the situation in the district remain tense. 

Akhilesh Yadav, former Uttar Pradesh chief minister was stopped by police from leaving his residence. He says that farmers are the backbone of India’s democracy and should not be treated like this. The violence is an escalation in protests that have been occurring for 10 months against agriculture reforms that will benefit private companies at the expense of the farmer’s wellbeing and livelihoods. 10s of thousands of farmers have been striking on the outskirts of delhi since November of last year hoping to repeal the laws.

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