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A new protest song on lips and supplies to last winter: farmers prepare for long haul

Released last week by Kanwar Grewal and Harf Cheema, the song ‘Pecha’ talks about farmers’ ‘Delhi Chalo’ programme and asks farmers to get ready for this nationwide stir on November 26-27 so as to protest against farm bills.

Written by Raakhi Jagga | Ludhiana | November 26, 2020 10:47:11 am
Protesting farmers are carrying drinking water in tankers (Express Photo by Gurmeet Singh)

Khich le Jatta khich tayari pecha pai gaya Centre naal (Come on farmer, make all arrangements for marching on. It is a direct confrontation with Centre). As farmers marched towards Punjab- Haryana borders from different parts of the state, this was the song that blared from their tractors.

Released last week by Kanwar Grewal and Harf Cheema, the song ‘Pecha’ talks about farmers’ ‘Delhi Chalo’ programme and asks farmers to get ready for this nationwide stir on November 26-27 so as to protest against farm bills.

“A conservative figure of all farmers from 30 organisations, who will take part in the protest, can be around 1.25 lakh men and women, including some teenagers,” said Dr Darshan Pal, president of Kirti Kisan Union.

In addition to this, over 2 lakh farmers of BKU (Ugrahan) are expected to cross through two highways of Punjab-Haryana to march towards Delhi.

Over all, 40,000 women will be part of this protest out of which nearly 35,000 will be of BKU (Ugrahan) and the rest at other locations of other 30 farmer unions.

The total protesters from all unions are expected to touch around 3.25 lakh. State leadership will be leading the marches, followed by women and then men, said farmer union leaders.

As villagers are coming in large numbers from different districts of Punjab, they are being told to make detailed arrangements.

Farmers have enough ration to see them through 3-4 months

The list includes – around five woollen clothes per member, personal utensils for eating food for every farmer, own bedding, blanket, all trolleys. Further, tractors must be fully covered with water-proof sheets and should have adequate torch arrangements inside. There should be few motorcycles per jatha kept in separate vehicles which can be used in case of emergency by members to commute from one place to another. Few folding beds per jatha are also being kept.

“Farmers have also arranged paddy stubble in many trolleys which can be used as sheets to be spread below in trolleys so that one can feel the warmth. Dry ration for 3-4 months has been stocked by each jatha including onions, potatoes, spices, vegetables, pulses etc…large utensils to cook this food, wood as a fuel to cook this food while LPG cylinders can also be arranged from nearby areas where the morchas will be organised. These arrangements are done for struggles most of the time and this time the struggle seems to be long,” said Shingaara Singh, BKU(Ugrahan)’s Bathinda unit chief.

He said, ‘’We will argue with Haryana authorities to give us a way to march ahead and if we are stopped then we will sit at that very place. We are not going to break any barricades. But we will stay at those sites for a week only and later will give yet another programme.”

A total of 4,000 trolleys, 1,600 buses have been arranged by Ugrahan group alone, while the other 30 unions have not yet given the exact number of their vehicles which will march in this programme against farm laws.

Every vehicle will carry a flag of the farm union and every participant will have a flag in hand and badge on his/her dress.

“The hurdles will not be able to stop farmers on way to Delhi, they are determined and we all have listened that whatever we resist, it persists…Vela aa gaya jaag kisana….de system de halaq ch fana.. khet tere khon nu firde joh tu paida keete entar naal (time has come for the farmer to wake up and take the fight to the system. They are trying to snatch our farms, which have been irrigated with entar tractor ( an old brand of tractor),” Lachman Singh Sewewala, Khet Mazdoor Union’s state general secretary, said this as he listened to ‘Pecha’ yet again. Pointing out that farmers are also carrying emergency medicines, Sewewala added,”People on social media comment that Punjab’s farmers are the richest…If they are so rich, why lakhs are sleeping on roads for the past 2 months? “

 

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