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Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Punjab, Haryana Farmers Protest highlights: Unemployment will increase if there are no mandis, says Rahul Gandhi

Security has been tightened outside the house of deputy chief minister Dushyant Chautala in Sirsa following a protest called by two dozen farmer organisations seeking their resignation from the Manohar Lal Khattar government.

Written by Sukhbir Siwach , Edited by Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: October 7, 2020 10:01:50 am
Rahul Gandhi addressing rally at Pehowa. Pic by Jasbir Malhi

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, who is in Haryana to protest against new farm laws, said absence of mandis, according to the new farm laws, will only increase unemployment. “Lakhs of people work at the Mandis. Where will those people working at the Mandis go if mandis are closed,” said Gandhi addressing a rally  in Pehowa

Gandhi’s tractor rally “Kheti Bachao Yatra” to campaign  was stopped briefly outside Haryana this afternoon by dozens of policemen. Ambala IGP Y Puran Kumar said a conditional permission has been granted to the Congress leader’s rally, where a gathering of not more than 100 people will be allowed. Gandhi is set to address key rallies in Pehowa and Pipli areas of Kurukshetra district, in Haryana.

Earlier today, addressing a presser at Circuit house in Patiala, Gandhi said that the Congress manifesto aimed at developing the agriculture system and improving its infrastructure. This would have included developing markets for farmers and putting a mandi in every 4 kms. “We never wanted the destruction of the entire food security system, which is exactly what the Narendra Modi government has done,” Gandhi added. 

He highlighted that the farm bills will end up destroying the existing structures of food and security for the farmers. Attacking the Centre, Rahul said that the laws introduced by the Modi government “is an attack on our farmers”.  

Meanwhile, security has been tightened outside the house of deputy chief minister Dushyant Chautala in Sirsa following a protest called by two dozen farmer organisations seeking their resignation from the Manohar Lal Khattar government.

In other news, Punjab Health Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu on Tuesday tested positive for the novel coronavirus. Sidhu had shared a stage with Rahul Gandhi during tractor rally at Sangrur on October 5.

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Rahul Gandhi’s 3-day tractor rally against farm laws reached Haryana today.

20:01 (IST)06 Oct 2020
You can't end the system when you can improve it: Rahul Gandhi in Kurukshetra

Rahul Gandhi begins addressing farmers at Kurukshetra. Continuing he attack on the Modi government, he said: " You (Modi govtermnet) can't end the system when you can improve the system. Ending the system will kill our farmers."

19:22 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Rahul Gandhi to address a public meeting at Thanesar, shortly

After performing worship at Jyotisar, a very important pilgrimage site of Kurukshetra, Rahul Gandhi to address a public meeting at Thanesar (Kurukshetra) shortly

18:28 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Unemployment will increase if there are no mandis: Rahul Gandhi

Closing down Mandis will only increase unemplyment: Lakhs of people work at the Mandis. "Where will those people working at the Mandis go if mandis are closed," says Rahul Gandhi. 

18:26 (IST)06 Oct 2020
If you're (Modi) giving freedom to farmers, then why are they on road protesting: Rahul Gandhi

Taking a jibe at  Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said: " Modi said he is giving freedom to farmers by bringing in the farm bills but then why are farmers on road protesting, why didn't his government allow a debate on the bills in Parliament."

18:21 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Rahul Gandhi begins address at Pehowa, Haryana

Rahul Gandhi begins addressing public meeting at Pehowa anaj mandi, says the Narendra Modi goverment has done nothing for the famers in the past six years.

18:18 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Bhartiya Kisan Union stage protest against farm bills in Sangrur

Members of Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU Ekta-Ugrahan) protest against the three farm bills and Corporate houses in Sangrur .Express Photo by Gurmeet Singh 

18:14 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Rahul Gandhi to address rally in Pehowa, shortly

Rahul Gandhi reaches Pehowa anaj mandi. He will address a public meeting at the mandi, shortly. 

17:31 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Haryana authorities allow Rahul Gandhi, some party leaders to enter state

After winding up his last rally at Sanaur in Patiala, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi drove a tractor to reach Haryana border on the concluding day of his "Kheti Bachao Yatra". He was accompanied on the tractor state Congress chief Kumari Selja, senior leaders Bhupinder Singh Hooda. A number of Congress workers were accompanying Gandhi from Punjab's Patiala district, but the procession was stopped on the highway near Teokar village on Pehowa border for an hour.    

16:46 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Rahul Gandhi enters Haryana

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi has entered Haryana, as part of his Kheti Bachao tractor rally. Gandhi will be addressing rallies  in Pehowa and Pipli areas of Kurukshetra district, in Haryana. 

16:36 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Rahul, along with Congress supporters at the Punjab-Haryana Border

Congress leader rahul gandhi, along with other leaders and his supporters try to cross the Punjab-Haryana Border during the Kheti Bachao tractor rally near kyukar Village of Pehowa.

16:30 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Gherao at Harnaya Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Singh's residence

A gherao was conducted by the farmers at Harnaya Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Singh's residence in Sirsa. Farmers and police have entered into a clash. Police fired tear gas to disperse the aditated mob. Security has been beefed up at the Singh's residence.  

Express Photo by Manoj Dhaka

16:00 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Rahul Gandhi permitted to enter Haryana on condition of not more than 100 persons at a time

Rahul Gandhi, who will be rallying in Haryana for the rest of the day was given permission to enter the state on a condition that not more than 100 people can gather at a time. Ambala IGP Y Puran Kumar said:  "The permission for entry of Rahul Gandhi is conditional. More than 100 persons won't be allowed at a point of time. Covid restrictions have to be followed. The organizers have accepted the conditions."  

15:27 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Punjab health minister Balbir Sidhu tests positive for Covid

In other news, Punjab health minister Balbir Sidhu has tested positive for Coronavirus. On Monday, he had shared stage with Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.

15:22 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Rahul Gandhi to address rallies at Pehowa and Pipli and against farm laws

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi is set to address public meetings at Pehowa and at Pipli in Kurukshetra district. Pipli is the same place where the protesting farmers were lathicharged on September 10. 

15:21 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Cong leaders Bhupinder Singh Hooda reaches Haryana border to welcome Rahul Gandhi

Senior Congress leaders including Bhupinder Singh Hooda, Haryana Congress President Kumari Selja, Kiran Choudhry, Kuldeep Bishnoi have reached the Haryana border to welcome Rahul Gandhi. The police have installed Nakas at least at half a dozen points to regulate the traffic. 

15:15 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Give me free press, other institutions and this govt won’t last long: Rahul Gandhi

The Modi government has forcibly taken control of all the key institutions, Rahul alleged, while addressing a press conference in Patiala on the third and final day of his Kheti Bachao Yatra in Punjab. The BJP government has captured the soul of the country, he claimed.  Read more 

14:20 (IST)06 Oct 2020
In London, rain, a £10,000 fine & Covid rules fail to dampen spirits of protesters

Whatever happens in Punjab directly and indirectly affects the Sikh and Punjabi diaspora communities around the world. Naturally, the ongoing farmers’ protest too has found an echo in the sentiments of Punjabis living in the UK, where numerous rallies and virtual events are being organised to stand with farmers in distress.

That there is a huge emotional support for the cause of Punjabi farmers is evident from an impressive turnout at the ‘Kisaan Rally’ held late Sunday afternoon in Southall. Despite incessant rain, Covid restrictions and a police fine of £10,000, the streets of Southall filled up with hundreds of people and a large number of farm and luxury vehicles. “I attended the rally to express solidarity with our brothers in Punjab who have left the comfort of their homes to protest against the recent farm laws,” says Mohinder Kaur, an elderly woman who had braved the weather to join the protest. (Read full story here)

13:20 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Security beefed up in Sirsa, Haryana

13:15 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Farmers gather in large numbers at Sirsa protest site

Security has been beefed up in Haryana's Sirsa where farmers in large numbers have gathered. Several 'nakas' have been set up in the city to ensure there is no traffic disruption. Yogender Yadav, a member of the All-India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee was also present at the protest site. See Photos by Manoj Dhaka below.

12:56 (IST)06 Oct 2020
Tractor Yatra to reach Punjab-Haryana border
Former Haryana CM Bhupinder Singh at the Punjab border today. (Sukhbhir Siwach)

Congress's Kheti Bachao Yatra on its third day will reach Haryana and due to this, several congressmen have gathered at the Punjab-Haryana border. Troops are deployed in great numbers  waiting for the arrival of Rahul Gandhi along with Punjab CM Capt. Amarinder Singh. Former Haryana CM Bhupinder Singh Hooda was present at the Punjab border to oversee the arrangements for today's yatra. (Inputs from Sukhbhir Siwach)

Rahul Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi farmer rally, Rahul Gandhi farmer rally Punjab, Rahul Gandhi farmer rally Haryana, Punjab farmer rally, Haryana farmer rally, Punjab farmer protests, Haryana farmer protests, farmer protests, farm bills, India news, Indian Express Protesting against the new farm laws, farmers sit at the Railway station in Jalandhar for an indefinite period as part of their rail roko agitation in Punjab on Thursday. (Express Photo by Gurmeet Singh )

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi Sunday will launch a tractor rally in support of farmers agitating against the farm legislations. Rahul, who is on a three-day visit to Punjab and Haryana, is expected to address two public meetings, each with a gathering of at least 10,000 farmers in Moga and Ludhiana. He will also lead a tractor rally for which the party has arranged at least 3,000 tractors in Moga with another 2,000 to join as it enters Ludhiana.

The main Opposition party in Haryana is leaving no stone unturned to turn the rally into a show of strength. Amid Haryana government’s tough stance that Gandhi will not be allowed in Haryana, Congress has mobilised all its sitting and former MLAs and former MPs to bring in maximum of their supporters on tractor trolleys and other vehicles and force state government to let Gandhi’s entry into Haryana.

Besides PCC chief Kumari Selja, former CM Bhupinder Singh Hooda, party in charge of Haryana Vivek Bansal, senior leaders Randeep Surjewala, Kuldeep Bishnoi and others will be accompanying Gandhi on his entry into the state.

“Although state government had been issuing statements that Gandhi would not be allowed to enter, we will definitely enter and support the oppressed farmers, workers, traders, and all others who have joined hands against this anti-farmer and anti-people government in the state,” a senior party leader said.

Meanwhile, Haryana Home Minister Anil Vij Saturday reiterated that Rahul Gandhi will not be allowed enter the state if he leads a protest march even as the Congress continued to discuss possible routes that the senior leader can take to reach Haryana from Punjab.

"We have nothing to do what he (Rahul) does in Punjab, but we won’t let him enter Haryana. Earlier too, the Punjab government tried to spoil the peace in Haryana by gathering crowds twice but we did not allow them to do it," Vij said in a statement.

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