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Friday, October 22, 2021

At Singhu, farmers stage silent protest against Lakhimpur deaths

The four farmers were killed Sunday in Lakhimpur Kheri after a convoy of three SUVs, including one owned by Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra, hit a group of farm protesters leading to a clash.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
Updated: October 5, 2021 9:01:35 am
Delhi Traffic Police Monday briefly diverted vehicles headed towards the Ghazipur border due to closure of NH 9 and NH 24 by Ghaziabad Police in view of the Lakhimpur Kheri violence. (Photo: Prem Nath Pandey)

Protesters at Singhu border Monday held a silent march following the deaths of four farmers in UP’s Lakhimpur Kheri.

The four farmers were killed Sunday in Lakhimpur Kheri after a convoy of three SUVs, including one owned by Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra, hit a group of farm protesters leading to a clash. The incident had sparked outrage across protest sites with the Sanyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) announcing a nation-wide protest Monday.

SKM, in a statement, said: “There were spontaneous protests in response to the unfortunate developments in Lakhimpur Kheri. Candlelight marches and rallies were taken out in several locations. In Puranpur and other locations, highways were jammed by protesting farmers. Thousands of farmers poured into Tikunia today, at the site of the violent incident, where the bodies of the martyrs were kept, and negotiations were held with the administration. The protests will continue over the coming days.”

On the main protest stage at Singhu, speeches were made by several people who spoke about the incident and the continued “persecution of farmers by the government”.

Those at the protest site said more people are expected to join as the agitation against the incident will be intensified. “The brutal murder of the farmers has resonated across the country. Protests are taking place in so many states. Leaders are being arrested by police. Our momentum will continue, and farmers back home are eager to join. This will be our statement to a regime that doesn’t care about our interests,” said Baljeet, a farmer.

The Delhi Traffic Police briefly diverted traffic headed towards the Ghazipur border and issued an advisory for commuters to not travel through Sarai Kale Khan due to closure of NH-24 and NH-9 in light of farmer protests on Monday morning. Travelers were asked to take the Anand Vihar route for Ghaziabad and DND for Noida.

In a tweet later, traffic police informed commuters that NH-24 has been reopened and normal traffic movement restored.

Heavy barricading was also seen at the Ghazipur protest site as call for protests were made following the incident.

Meanwhile, hundreds of Congress workers and members of student organisations staged protests against the incident outside UP Bhawan in the morning and demanded action. Around noon, Delhi Police detained over 95 protesters for violating DDMA guidelines and holding the protest without permission.

DCP (New Delhi) Deepak Yadav said police gave several warnings to the protesters to leave but they didn’t listen.

“Members of Indian Youth Congress, SFI, RLD, AISA, AIKS, KYS, Janvadi Mahila Samiti, and Samajwadi Party were detained and taken to Mandir Marg police station,” said police.

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