Police Killed Farmer Kotaiah for CM Meeting in Kondaveedu: Fact Check


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Image about Police Killed Farmer Kotaiah for CM Meeting in Kondaveedu
Police Killed Farmer Kotaiah for CM Meeting in Kondaveedu

Story:

Tragedy in Kondaveedu Heritage and Culture festival: Police Killed Farmer Kotaiah for Chief Minister Chandrababu Meeting

Other Versions

(Telugu)
కొండవీడు కోటలో ముఖ్యమంత్రి చంద్రబాబు పర్యటన ఓ రైతు కుటుంబం ఇంట్లో తీరని విషాదాన్ని మిగిల్చింది. ముఖ్యమంత్రి రాక సందర్భంగా భద్రతా ఏర్పాట్లు, సభ పేరుతో కాపుకొచ్చిన పండ్ల తోట, పూల తోటను ధ్వంసం చేయడం, పొలంలోకి రాకుండా తనను అవమానించడంతో ఓ రైతన్న తల్లడిల్లాడు. పొలంలోకి వెళ్లేందుకు ప్రయత్నించి పోలీస్‌ దెబ్బలకు రైతు నేలకొరిగిన ఘటన సోమవారం గుంటూరు జిల్లాలో చోటు చేసుకుంది. కొన ఊపిరితో ఉన్న తన తండ్రిని ఆస్పత్రికి తరలించేందుకు అనుమతించాలని మృతుడి కుమారుడు వేడుకున్నా సీఎం వస్తున్నారంటూ పోలీసులు అందుకు అంగీకరించలేదు.

Image about Police Killed Farmer Kotaiah for CM Meeting in Kondaveedu

Fact Check:

A message popular on social media claims a tragedy took place in Kondaveedu Heritage and Culture festival of Andhra Pradesh, when Police Killed Farmer Kotaiah for Chief Minister Chandrababu Meeting. Accordingly, Police damaged the farm lands in the name of security of CM visit, insulted the farmer and beat him up. Allegedly, the police did not even allow the farmer’s son to take him to hospital. Other versions of the message said police and officials levelled the farmer’s fields to make space for helipad and parking during the Kondaveedu festival and that family members say Kotaiah died because of police beating. The death of the farmer gathered significance due to involvement of opposition parties in Andhra Pradesh and the upcoming state elections. So, let us examine whether or not Police killed farmer Kotaiah for CM meeting in Kondaveedu during heritage and cultural festival.

Origin of Claims: Police Killed Farmer Kotaiah

The farmer Kotaiah died on 18th February 2019 near Kondaveedu Fort in Guntur district of Andhra Pradesh as the Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu was vising the place for a meeting. Next day, Sakshi Newspaper (owned by wife of Y. S. Jagan Mohan Reddy) published the story as tragedy where police killed farmer Kotaiah for CM Chandrababu meeting in Kondaveedu. Accordingly, police and officials damaged the crop fields to make space for Helipad of CM and beat up the farmer who tried to stop them. The article also said police did not allow the farmer’s son to take him to hospital citing security reasons for CM visit, which is why he allegedly died. Opposition party leader YSRCP President YS Jagan Mohan Reddy tweeted strongly about the incident blaming CM Chandrababu Naidu for the farmer’s death.

Available Details

Opposition party leaders of YSRCP Party claim and blame CM Chandrababu Naidu and Police killed the farmer Kotaiah. However, Police and ruling party leaders came up with a different version along with some proofs. The District SP held a press meeting and mentioned some details of the case. Firstly, as propagated, the helipad area made for CM landing is not in the farmer’s lands. It is in fact more than half a kilometer away from there. The District SP said a temporary police control room was set up in 4 acres of vacant land of farmer after obtaining his permission. He claimed Pittala Koteswara Rao alias Kotaiah consumed pesticide at the back side of his farm “four hours ahead” of the Chief Minister’s scheduled visit.

According to police, a worker Punna Rao noticed Kotaiah’s suicide attempt and called his son without informing police. The farmer’s son, according to police, came late to spot between check posts for CM visit. So, there was delay in taking Kotaiah to hospital. Importantly, there’s a short video showing police carrying the farmer and take him into a van. Police said they took the farmer to Phirangipuram hospital in the van belonging to electricity department. The video also reveals a person asking what happened to the farmer (in Telugu) – then comes a reply saying he drank pesticide. Police cited personal and family reasons for Kotaiah’s suicide and also expressed vain for his death in spite of their efforts.

CM Chandrababu Naidu’s Response

Police informed CM Chandrababu about the farmer committing suicide drinking pesticide. The Chief Minister expressed condolences to the farmer’s family and declared 5 lacs ex-gratia in the meeting itself. The ruling party leaders said YSRCP is portraying the case differently for political gains before elections. On the other hand, it is unclear whether there was any fight between the farmer and the police.

Post-mortem of Farmer Kotaiah

The allegations about Police beating and killing the farmer Kotaiah after damaging his crops became popular on social media. The death of the farmer captured wide attention of media and people. A post-mortem was conducted the next day and results were sent to forensics lab. The post-mortem report can give clarity how exactly the farmer Kotaiah died and if there’s any foul play from police. Meanwhile, there’s political tension in the area and additional forces are deployed to avoid any unwanted incidents.

Hoax or Fact:

Undetermined.


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