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Despite PM Modi’s appeal, farmers to intensify protest further; block Delhi-Jaipur highway

They have also appealed all sections of society, including girls and women, to join them.

The protesting farmers, on Saturday, said that they will expand and intensify their protest to a ‘pan-India’ scale as the Centre has refused to heed to their demands to repeal the three contentious farm laws–The Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020; The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance, and Farm Services Act, 2020; and The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020 enacted in September.

They have also appealed all sections of society, including girls and women, to join them. As of Saturday, the farmers are protesting at different borders of the National Capital.

“We request our sisters and mothers to become part of the protest. We are arranging for the seating, sleeping and hygiene facilities for women protesters. We appeal the girls and women across India to join the protest,” he said adding, “We want to keep this movement as peaceful as it can.”

“We have decided to expand this movement pan India,” said Kisan Sangharsh Samiti President Kawalpreet Singh Pannu while addressing a press conference at Singhu border.

Pannu said that farmers will move from Rajasthan’s Shajapur to Delhi borders blocking the Delhi-Jaipur route on Sunday and all District Collector offices would become the Centre of the protest on December 14.

Announcing that all the leaders of 32 unions would sit on a day-long hunger strike at the Singhu border protest site from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on December 14, Pannu sought support from other sections of society.

“The government had been saying since the beginning that these laws are for the benefit of farmers but we had told them that it is for the corporate houses,” Pannu said.

It was the 17th day of farmers’ protest on Delhi’s different borders. Thousands of farmers, who began their sit-in from Singhu border on Delhi-Chandigarh border on November 26, are braving the chilly winter under open skies. The protest has hampered the supply chain to the national capital.

Thousands of farmers will take out a tractor rally to block the Delhi-Jaipur highway on Sunday, demonstrators said on Saturday, vowing to intensify their agitation despite a fresh appeal by from Prime Minister Narendra Modi who had assured the farmers on Saturday that the reforms in the agrarian sector were aimed at helping them.

“Reforms will help draw investment in agriculture and benefit farmers. We’ve taken all these initiatives to increase the farmers’ income and make them more prosperous. Today, farmers of India can sell their produce both at the mandis as well as outside,” PM Modi said at the annual meeting of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) in New Delhi.

Meanwhile, Dushyant Chautala, the Haryana Deputy Chief Minister and a BJP ally, on Friday said he would resign from his post if he is unable to secure the minimum support price (MSP) guarantee for farmers. “Our party’s national president already made it clear that MSP must be ensured to farmers. The written proposals given by the Central government to the protesting farmers include a provision for MSPs. I will work to secure MSP for farmers as long as I am in power,” he was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

Delhi Police Commissioner SN Shrivastava visited the Tikri border and met the police and CAPF personnel deployed in the areas where the farmers’ agitation is continuing. During the late-night visit on Friday, the commissioner met the staff deployed at the borders along with senior police officers.

“Visited Delhi’s border with Bahadurgarh to interact with Delhi Police officers/men and CAPF personnel deployed in view of Kisan agitation. They are doing commendable duties during harsh winter with full appreciation of work expected out of them,” tweeted Shrivastava.

Singhu, Auchandi, Piau Maniyari and Mangesh borders are closed. The Delhi traffic police advised motorists to take alternate routes via Lampur, Safiabad, Saboli and Singhu school toll tax borders. Traffic has also been diverted from Mukarba and GTK road. The traffic police also requested commuters to avoid Outer Ring Rd, GTK Road, NH 44.

“The Chilla and Ghazipur borders are closed for traffic from Noida and Ghaziabad to Delhi due to farmers protests. People are advised to take alternate route for coming to Delhi via Anand Vihar, DND, Apsara & Bhopra borders,” the Delhi traffic police tweeted on Saturday.


Published : December 13, 2020

By : The Statesman