Hundreds of vehicles in long queues that stretched to upto six kilometers were seen moving at snail’s pace from Chandigarh-Zirakpur border towards Chandigarh-Ambala National Highway, and towards Banur from Patiala lights at Zirakpur on Thursday, as farmers blocked the roads at Zirakpur and Azizpur toll plaza in agitation against the Centre’s farm laws.
Members of several farmers organisations staged a protest around 12 pm on Thursday, and blocked the Airport light point at Zirakpur, and the Azizpur toll plaza point on the Banur-Patiala Highway.
The protesting farmers had blocked the roads by parking trucks, tractors and also setting up temporary tentage for the dharna.
Apart from ambulances and emergency vehicles, no other private vehicles were allowed to cross the blockade during the protest. The policemen deployed at Zirakpur were, meanwhile, seen regulating the traffic chaos.
The worst affected route due to the blockade was the Patiala light point at Zirakpur, where commuters coming from Chandigarh and heading towards Delhi or Ambala, and the commuters heading towards Patiala and Rajpura were stuck for nearly three hours.
The policemen who were on their toes were eventually rendered helpless in managing the traffic congestion.
A policeman at the site said that they have been getting the vehicles movement diverted, whereas, routes were being cleared for emergency vehicles, especially ambulances.
Anurag Sharma, a resident of Derabassi, who was heading to his office at Phase II of Industrial Area, said, “I could not travel to my office today as the road was blocked, and so I had to take a leave and return back to my home.”
Nitin Aggarwal, a resident of Sector 15 in Panchkula, said, “I had to go towards Rajpura, and I had no idea about the protest and blockade of roads at Zirakpur, and so I got stuck for more than two hours at Zirakpur, while coming from Panchkula, as the traffic jam was massive.”
Meanwhile, after 4 pm, as the protestors removed the blockage from roads, the vehicles started regaining their momentum as more policemen were deployed on the stretch to manage the traffic congestion.
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