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Thursday, June 24, 2021

One year of promulgation of farm ordinances: Farmers mark day as Kranti Diwas, burn law copies, protest at 250 sites

While the first protest against the farm laws, then brought in as ordinances, was held on June 6, the pakka morchas had begun in Punjab on October 1 last year and later moved to Delhi borders from November 26, 2020.

Written by Raakhi Jagga | Ludhiana |
Updated: June 6, 2021 6:14:03 pm
One year of promulgation of farm ordinances: Farmers mark day as Kranti Diwas, burn law copies, protest at 250 sitesFarmers protest outside the residence of senior BJP leader Rajinder Bhandari, in Ludhiana Saturday. (Express photo by Gurmeet Singh)

To mark one year of tabling of farm ordinances before the Union Cabinet on June 5 and the first protest being held against them on June 6, farmer outfits burnt copies of the farm laws at 250 places in Punjab. The protest on Saturday was held under the banner of Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM), which had earlier declared that the day will be observed as Sampoorna Kranti Diwas.

While the first protest against the farm laws, then brought in as ordinances, was held on June 6, the pakka morchas had begun in Punjab on October 1 last year and later moved to Delhi borders from November 26, 2020.

On Saturday, copies of farm laws were burnt outside the houses of BJP leaders as well.

In Ludhiana, a protest was organised outside the house of former Punjab BJP president Rajinder Bhandari. A protest was also held outside the house of Bikramjeet Singh Cheema, chairman of BJP Kisan Morcha, in Payal constituency of Ludhiana.

Dharna was also organised outside the house of Surjeet Kumar Jyani, former BJP minister in Kathera village, district Fazilka while a protest was held outside the house of Yadwinder Singh Shanty, BJP’s Barnala district president.

Out of 250 places, BKU (Ugrahan) organised protests at 49 places.

“These included 6 protests outside DC offices in various districts, 26 outside SDM offices and 16 outside BJP leaders’ houses. Our cadre organised protests in 12 districts of Punjab. Everywhere we burnt copies of farm laws. It was on June 5 amid lockdown when ordinances were tabled for the first time. I remember that from June 14 to June 30 last year all of our members used to stand on rooftops daily for an hour along with hand written protest charts as there was curfew in Punjab and we were not allowed to do assemble. However, slowly we started village-level protests, later tractor march in July, jail bharo aandolan in August. It was followed by village-level five days protest banning entry of SAD-BJP leaders in villages in August. We also organised pakka morchas at Badal and Patiala in September for 5 days, later ‘rail roko’ in September and finally indefinite dharnas, protests at various sites from October 1. It has been a year and we have not felt tired even for a day,” BKU (Ugrahan) general secretary Sukhdev Singh Kokrikalan said.

Sarwan Singh Pandher, president of Kisan Mazdoor Sangrash Committee (KMSC), said, “We had organised our first dharna on June 8, 2020. But it has been a year to these farm ordinances which became bills in September and finally laws when they got approval from President. In one year, they tried all measures to defame us, get our dharnas lifted, demoralise us, but repeal is our only demand.”

Jagmohan Singh Patiala, general secretary of BKU (Dakaunda), said, “Pakka dharnas are going on at 108 places where we have completed 248 days, it shows how insensitive this government is. They are not bothered that we are protesting against their decisions for the past one year. We started our first protest on June 6, 2020 and it is still continuing.”

No political party issued any statement on this issue Saturday to extend support to the farmers who protested across the state.

Farmers, meanwhile, said that Sunday, tributes will be paid to 6 farmers who had died in Mandsaur in Madhya Pradesh on June 6, 2017 where farmers protested to get MSP for their crops.

Unions condemn FIR for blocking Sampla visit

On Saturday, 32 farmer unions from Punjab, BKU (Ugrahan) and KMSC condemned registration of FIR against over 200 farmers who had blocked the entry points of village Phapre Bhaike on Friday where National SC/ST Commission chairman Vijay Sampla was to visit to meet a Dalit family.

“Protest was against a BJP leader and not Dalit family. We condemn the registration of FIR and we demand its cancellation or we will start a protest,” said a farmer union leader.

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