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Thursday, June 24, 2021

Punjab: Farmers protest outside former CM’s residence over BJP leader’s visit

The protest was led by BKU (Ugrahan). Barnala’s son and former MLA Gaganjeet Barnala is a member of the SAD. He was in Chandigarh at time of the protest, while his mother, Surjeet Kaur Barnala, was at home.

Written by Raakhi Jagga | Ludhiana |
June 9, 2021 3:12:14 am
The farmers are on warpath for the past six months to oppose three contentious farm laws introduced by the BJP government in the Centre. (File photo)

Farmers on Tuesday protested outside the house of former CM Surjeet Singh Barnala after they got to know that BJP leader Gurtej Singh Dhillon was visiting the late leader’s family at their Barnala residence. The protest was led by BKU (Ugrahan). Barnala’s son and former MLA Gaganjeet Barnala is a member of the SAD. He was in Chandigarh at time of the protest, while his mother, Surjeet Kaur Barnala, was at home.

Jarnail Singh, general secretary of BKU (Ugrahan), said, “Dhillon had come to Barnala’s house on Monday night and we got to know about him Tuesday morning, so we staged a dharna there. Around noon, police helped Dhillon move out of the house in his car and he went back to Patiala.”

Jarnail alleged that Dhillon’s speeding vehicle damaged motorbikes of two union members. “Due to this, our dharna continued outside the house of Barnala till 3.30 pm,” he said, adding that later Surjeet Kaur Barnala said that she will get the bikes repaired.

“We lifted the dharna, but we will be lodging a police complaint against Dhillon for damaging the motorcycles. It was sheer luck that our members escaped unhurt,” he added.

Gaganjeet Singh said, “I am suffering from Covid and I am in Chandigarh. Dhillon is my maternal cousin and he came to see my mother in Barnala, but as he is from a different political party, farmers came to lodge their protest. However, there was nothing political about this visit.”

“However, I fully support farmers and I also demand roll back of farm laws,” he added.

Barnala family’s parent political party was SAD (Longwal). In 2016, Gaganjeet and his son, Simarpreet Singh Barnala, had joined Congress. Simarpreet had even unsuccessfully contested Dhuri bypoll on Congress ticket, but was denied a ticket in 2017 polls. Since January 2017, Barnalas have been part of SAD (Badal).

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