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Opinion

Farmers from various states join the unrest and go on hunger strike

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Farmers in several states observed a one-day hunger strike on Monday, blocking roads, marching through the streets and shouting slogans to protest against three recently enacted farm laws that have sparked fierce unrest on the outskirts of Delhi.

A group of farmers tried to block the Delhi-Jaipur national highway in Shahjanpur on the Haryana-Rajasthan border, but the police stopped them. In Ghazipur, on the Delhi-Noida border, the Bharatiya Kisan (Takait) Union faction blocked traffic for some time. The head of the Bharatiya Kisan Union (Tikait), Rakesh Takait, said that traffic was blocked to tell the administration that they could block the flow of vehicles if they wanted to, but the unions later gave up to ensure that people were not disturbed. .

“The call for a hunger strike by the peasant leaders was a success,” said Baldev Singh, a peasant leader in Singhu, located on the border of Delhi and Haryana, where large numbers of farmers have gathered since November 27. .

In Punjab and Haryana, farmers shouted slogans in front of the district commissioners’ offices and held protest marches. Haryana police closed the Ambala-Patiala road after protesters gathered at the Shambhu border crossing with neighboring Punjab. “We wanted to send a strong message to the government that this is not just an upheaval from farmers in Punjab, but from the entire country,” said Shiv Kumar Kakka, one of the agricultural leaders who started a nine-hour hunger strike in Singhu.

The ruling Congress held protests in Punjab, and the head of the state unit, Sunil Jakhar, participated in a fence near the Shambhu border. Shiromani Akali Dal workers protested in Amritsar. Agricultural groups held events in Ludhiana, Patiala, Sangrur, Barnala, Bathinda, Moga, Faridkot, Ferozepur, and Tarn Taran.

“Farmers held protests in front of the deputy commissioners’ offices in various places in Punjab,” said Union Secretary General Bhartiya Kisan (Ekta Ugrahan) Sukhdev Singh Kokrikalan. This particular union did not participate in the strike, claiming they were not consulted before the end of the program.

In Haryana, farmers took to the streets before demonstrating outside the Deputy Commissioners (DC) offices. Many employee associations backed the protests, which rocked Rohtak, Hisar, Bhiwani, Sonepat, Jhajjar, Jind and Fatehabad.

“Everyone should join this fight for the future of the farming community. We are happy with the support of different sections and sectors, ”said Ratan Mann, state president of Haryana BKU (Tikait).

In Uttar Pradesh, Samajwadi Party workers clashed with the police in various locations, as they were prevented from going to fundraising offices in various districts. Clashes were reported in Lucknow, Hardoi, Agra, Gorakhpur, Etawah and some other districts.

Protests were also reported in Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Bihar, Odisha, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh and Kerala.

Police Superintendent (Bhiwandi) Ram Moorthi Joshi said: “The protest is going on peacefully and we have deployed additional police force to ensure that traffic on the road moves smoothly.”

When night fell on the stretch of road that is now a protest camp in Singhu, people shouted slogans, held up banners and torches. “The message of the fast was that the nation’s ‘annadata’, a food provider, was sitting hungry today,” said Harender Singh Lakhowal, agricultural leader. Police tightened security at the Delhi border points. Containers, cemented barriers, barbed wire and additional police force were deployed at the borders.

(With contributions from the agency)

Hindustan Times

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