Updated: November 24, 2020 1:23:56 pm
Though farmers have been denied permission to organise a rally at Ramlila ground or even to protest at Jantar Mantar in Delhi, the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) has said that they will provide whatever possible help that can to farmers in case they reach the national capital.
Manjinder Singh Sirsa, president of DSGMC, told The Indian Express: “Though we have been asked by the Delhi government to follow Covid guidelines, we will give rooms to farmers following guidelines in case they reach Delhi and need a place to stay. We have 10 historical gurdwaras in Delhi and food will be provided to one and all. Langar continues in gurdwaras 24×7 otherwise as well. Our gurus have taught us to nam japo and vand chhako, hence, our services will always be for the farmers, in case they reach Delhi. Moreover, our party president Sukhbir Badal has instructed us that we need to provide all possible help to our farmer brothers and sisters.”
Sirsa added: “In case they are not able to enter Delhi, looking at the Covid guidelines, we are ready to provide them help even outside Delhi if they ask for it.” However, farmer unions who will be revealing their detailed plan Tuesday afternoon at Kisan Bhawan Chandigarh observed that the “Covid hype in the national capital was being created looking at the farmers’ agitation”.
Sukhdev Singh Kokri Kalan, general secretary of BKU (Ugrahan), said, “We have our units in 14 districts of Punjab. Our five district units’ members will pass through Khanauri side towards Haryana to march ahead to Delhi while the remaining nine district units will go to Delhi via Dabwali side. We had emailed Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar on November 20 that our jathas will be passing through Haryana to march ahead towards Delhi and hence we should be given due permission to cross Haryana. However, we have not got any reply till date to that email. In that case, we will march ahead without waiting for any reply from the Haryana chief minister and will stop at a place where they stop us. Our dharna will start at the same spot, where we will be stopped,” he added.
Farmers will also try to enter the national highway from Rajpura towards Ambala or from Sardulgarh towards Sirsa, from Budhlada towards Ratia, from Muktsar towards Kallanwali area of Haryana etc.
Jagmohan Singh Patiala, working committee member of the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC), said, “Covid was bound to come as a reason for us farmers for not entering Delhi while the entire Bihar election happened with gatherings of thousands in each rally. The Prime Minister had himself flouted guidelines by addressing mass gatherings. At that time, no cases had increased and now cases have started multiplying. They are increasing testing more than three times and by 25th I am sure, they will present a huge number of Covid cases. I feel that Governments are doing politics on Covid and they increase or decrease testing whenever it suits them.”
Kokri Kalan said, “During Bihar polls, Covid had gone on a vacation and now once again in every state from where farmers have to march ahead, cases have started coming up. Hence, night curfew, weekend curfew etc. restrictions have started coming up. We had expected all this, they introduced farm bills in Covid period — this is the biggest violation as they were aware that farmers will protest but they invited us to gather on roads and now they want to implement these laws under the garb of Covid.”
Patiala said, “They should either suspend the farm bills issue till the time Covid period gets over, or we will continue our struggle in the Covid period only, no matter, how many cases swell up.”
“I have come to know that members of farmer unions are collecting ration from villages before moving ahead for the Delhi Chalo march. I want to appeal to them that they need not collect any ration, we are here to serve you for whatever time period you all want. We will cook langar and will make it reach at the locations where unions are protesting in Delhi, in case they reach Delhi. We are here to take care of them,” added Sirsa.
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