The farmers protesting against the three farm laws enacted by Parliament recently continued their ‘rail roko’ stir on Tuesday for the sixth day and decided to extend it for an indefinite period even as some of them appealed masses not to buy fuel from the Reliance petrol pumps and get their numbers ported from Jio to other telecom operators.
State president of Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee, Satnam Singh Pannu, said the protesting farmers have vowed to boycott some private companies as the “central government wants to promote the interests of some corporate houses in the country”.
Amarjeet Singh Brar, president of Moga Arhtiya Association, said all the 115 arhtiyas at Baghapurana Mandi ported their cellphone numbers from Reliance Jio to other telecom operators. “Apart from arhtiyas alone, their family members and employees too have done this. We did it as mark of protest as corporates are all set to eat up our work in the name of recently enacted farm laws,” he said.
In Jagraon area of Ludhiana, a group of villagers have organised a dharna near a Reliance pump urging people not to get fuel from there. In the Sadik area of Faridkot, local shopkeepers have decided not to sell Jio SIMs and Jio phones.
Jhanda Singh Jethuke, president, Bharti Kisan Union (Ugrahan) said from October 1, the farmers will intensify the agitation and ensure that no one pays tax at the toll plazas on five national highway in Punjab.
Sukhdev Singh Kokri Kalan, general secretary of BKU (Ugrahan), meanwhile, said the farmers’ movement has already taken shape of a people’s movement with masses on their own boycotting the corporates and their products.
BKU (Rajewal) leader B S Rajewal too said farmers will intensify their protest from October 1 and extend the ‘rail roko’ agitation, which was to end on October 2, indefinitely. Rajewal said farmers will socially boycott political leaders supporting the laws. “We will stage dharnas outside residences of BJP leaders in the state,” he said.
Jagmohan Singh, the general secretary of BKU (Dakaunda), said resolutions will be passed in village gram panchayats against the farm laws.
Earlier, farmers under the banner of Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee, who have been squatting on rail tracks at various places in the state since September 24, said they have decided to intensify their protest against the Centre and will continue to block rail tracks at Tanda, Mukerian, Jalandhar, Amritsar and Ferozepur.
The train service, meanwhile, continued to remain suspended in Punjab amid the farmers’ stir.
State general secretary of the committee, Sarwan Singh Pandher, dubbed the farm laws as “anti-farmers” and said the private firms will exploit farmers.
Another farmer leader Sawinder Singh Chautala said the rail roko protest would be further intensified next month and urged people from all sections of the society to come forward and support the farmers’ cause.
In a statement, the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC) said, “On October 2, farmers will take a pledge for social boycott of those political leaders and representatives whose parties have not opposed the anti-farmers laws”.
The farm outfit said on October 14, farmers will observe ‘MSP Adhikar Diwas’. All the agitations will culminate in a national protest on November 26 and 27 in Delhi. “AIKSCC gives a call for ‘Delhi Chalo’ to all farmers so that this anti-farmer government is forced to withdraw its inhuman assault on farmers future and livelihood,” it said.
With ENS Jalandhar
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines