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Friday, July 30, 2021

Chandigarh: Farmers arrested for sedition get bail, unions lift Sirsa dharna

The farmers had been arrested in connection with an incident of stone pelting on the car of Haryana Deputy Speaker Ranbir Singh Gangwa during a protest on July 11. Invoking the sedition charge for the first time against farmers protesting over the new farm laws for the past eight months, the Haryana Police had booked over 100 of them.

By: Express News Service | Chandigarh |
July 22, 2021 9:14:41 pm

A local court in Sirsa Thursday granted bail to five farmers who had been arrested after being booked for sedition, following which their counterparts lifted the dharna from in front of the Mini Secretariat.

The development came a day after farmers blocked a national highway demanding the release of the five protesters, who were arrested in pre-dawn raids on July 15.

Sirsa SP Dr Arpit Jain said, “The court has accepted bail applications of five accused. Our investigation is still on.”

The farmers had been arrested in connection with an incident of stone pelting on the car of Haryana Deputy Speaker Ranbir Singh Gangwa during a protest on July 11. Invoking the sedition charge for the first time against farmers protesting over the new farm laws for the past eight months, the Haryana Police had booked over 100 of them.

Meanwhile, farmer leader Baldev Singh Sirsa, who had had started a fast unto death seeking release of the arrested farmers, broke his fast after the farmers were released. Sirsa had earlier announced that his “fast unto death will continue till either those arrested come back or I will go to the cremation ground”.

Lakhvinder Singh, another farmer leader, on Thursday said that Baldev Singh’s health had started deteriorating despite continuous monitoring by doctors.

The farmer outfits also withdrew their call of Sirsa Bandh under which they had urged the shopkeepers to close their shops for two hours and join their dharna on Friday. They have also withdrawn the plans of gherao of Gangwa’s residence in Hisar on Saturday.

Haryana Kisan Manch president Parhlad Singh Bharukhera, who was also named in the sedition FIR, said, “The administration had initially thought that the protesters will lift the dharna. But they soon realised that the farmers are not going anywhere”.

While SP Jain said that the investigation in the attack on Gangwa’s car is still on, farmer outfits have been claiming that their members were not part of any stone-pelting, alleging that their political opponents might have planted their men to defame the ongoing agitation against the three contentious central farm laws.

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