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Protesting farmers threaten to block train tracks if government doesn’t comply with demands


Farmers who have been agitating for the past two weeks against the new farm laws announced Thursday that they will block the railroad tracks if the government does not comply with their demands.

Farmers unions, who met Thursday, said they would soon announce a date to block roads across the country.

Addressing journalists at Delhi’s Singhu border, where they have been protesting for nearly two weeks to demand a roll back of farm laws, farmers’ unions also reiterated that they will intensify their agitation and begin blocking all roads leading to the national capital.

Read also | Government is ready for talks, urges agricultural leaders to approve the proposal, says Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar

“We will block the train tracks if our demands are not met. We will decide the date and announce it soon. The blockade of the roads will not be limited to Haryana and Punjab, but will be done throughout the country, “said farmer leader Boota Singh at the press conference.

The farmers’ announcement came on the day that the Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said it was inappropriate to announce the next stage of turmoil as talks continued and urged unions to return to the discussion table. .

Tomar also urged farmers’ union leaders to consider proposals being sent to them to break the stalemate in protests against the three new farm laws and said the government is ready to continue discussing with them at any time.

“The Center has admitted that laws have been made for merchants. If agriculture is a state issue, the central government has no right to make laws about it, ”said Balbir Singh Rajewal, another leader.

Thousands of farmers have been protesting at various border points for almost two weeks seeking the repeal of the new farm laws, which they claim were aimed at benefiting businesses by weakening the ‘mandi’ system and the minimum price regime. support (MSP) for the acquisition of agricultural products.

On Wednesday, the government had proposed giving a “written guarantee” that the current MSP regime for acquisitions would continue.

However, the farmers’ unions rejected the proposal and said they would intensify their agitation until the government accepts their demand for a complete repeal of the three laws.

The government has also proposed to make the necessary amendments on at least seven issues, including one to allay fears about the weakening of the ‘mandi’ system.

“Five rounds of talks with the government have already been held, but they remain inconclusive. So far, the government has not sent us any invitations for another round of talks. If the government sends us a proposal for a meeting, we will decide it at our meeting, ”another farmer leader, Shiv Kumar Kakka, told PTI.

When asked about the solution to the current confrontation with the government, Kakka said: “only God knows.” “We are facing many difficulties due to the cold weather and the Covid-19 pandemic, but despite this, we will continue our protest until our demands are met,” Kakka added.

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