Updated: February 6, 2021 8:36:50 am
In view of the ‘Chakka Jam’ on Saturday, Delhi Police has tightened security arrangements at the borders to ensure no protester can enter the city, even as farm leaders themselves insisted the nationwide stir will not touch the national capital. Delhi Police Commissioner S N Shrivastava also held a meeting with senior police officers to review the law-and-order arrangements at Singhu, Ghazipur and Tikri.
Police have already placed multi-level barricading around the borders with cement blocks, nails, barbed wires and extra CRPF forces. After the Republic Day tractor march turned violent, police said they have sealed the borders and restricted movement of protesters.
Chinmoy Biswal, the Delhi Police PRO, said police are also monitoring social media posts to keep a check on fake news and inflammatory content. “We want to make sure people don’t spread rumours… We are taking preventive measures to ensure miscreants don’t enter Delhi. We are also in touch with police from other states,” said Biswal.
The Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM) announced a nationwide Chakka Jam on Saturday and said they would block national and state highways from noon to 3 pm. The volunteers said they won’t enter Delhi and block roads here. Farm leaders later also said they won’t hold Chakka Jams in Uttar Pradesh since many farmers are busy with the harvest.
Traffic Police have deployed over 1,200 personnel around Delhi.
Manish Agrawal, JCP (Traffic), said over 1,000 personnel will be deployed at arterial roads and also at borders. “The traffic unit is working with local police at these points to prevent any sort of Chakka Jam. We will divert the traffic depending on the jam and movement,” said JCP.
Senior police officers at Singhu said they don’t want the Chakka Jam to affect locals in any way. “We aren’t allowing anyone to pass through the borders now. Traffic is plying through Jaati village but we can’t allow officials and mediapersons to cross the barricades.
More than four points at the border have been sealed with nail beds and roadblocks,” said a senior police officer from Outer North district.
At Ghazipur border, local police have moved some of the barricades to the Delhi side to stop entry for the public.
Deepak Yadav, DCP (East), said, “The protesters told us that they won’t enter Delhi but we still need to take precautionary measures. We have deployed our force at the border and at picket points to check vehicles tomorrow.”
Meanwhile, around 500 farmers at Ghazipur returned to their villages in UP on Friday to hold protests there on Saturday. BKU’s Rakesh Tikait told The Indian Express: “This is the sugarcane harvest season for farmers in UP and Uttarakhand; they need to be in their fields.
We don’t want them to stop their work and come here for the Chakka Jam. They can go to the DC or SDM office in their respective districts and protest for some time.”
Vijaypal Ghopla, a farmer from Meerut, said, “My friends went back to Meerut and Muzaffarnagar to call locals and farmers for the protest. They will hold sit-in protests at Meerut-Delhi Highway tomorrow. We want the government to stop spreading lies and hear us. Do we have any other option left?”
Ghopla and his friends said they will raise slogans and hold small rallies.
The protesters said they won’t move towards Delhi as they fear fresh clashes with the police. Kuar Singh, a sugarcane farmer from Muzaffarngar, said, “This is not our choice. We are helpless. We can’t ignore the police presence here and the false accusations from the government.”
Protesters at the border said they will start a 24×7 langar for farmers who will participate in the Chakka Jam and return to Ghazipur.
SKM also released guidelines instructing protesters that only national and state highways across the country will be jammed from noon to 3 pm. Ambulances and other essential services won’t be stopped.
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