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Farmers hold protest in Panchkula: ‘Centre wants to break the mandi system, abolish MSP’

Several political leaders, including Mahila Congress’s Ranjeeta Mehta, INLD’s young MLA candidate for Panchkula Karundeep -- and the local District Bar Association extended support and showed solidarity towards the protests.

By: Express News Service | Panchkula | September 26, 2020 6:19:14 am
farm bills, farm bills 2020, farm bills protest, farm bills punjab farmers protest, panchkula farmers protest, indian express newsPolice barricade on Chandigarh-Zirakpur highway during the nationwide strike against the agriculture Bills on Friday. (Jasbir Malhi)

Responding to the call for ‘Bharat Bandh’, farmers of Panchkula district carried out sit-in protests and tractor rallies across Kalka, Pinjore, Raipurrani and Barwala.

Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) state president Guram Singh reached Pinjore to address the farmers of the district.

Talking to mediapersons, he said, “The Centre wants to break the mandi system and abolish the minimum support price (MSP) via these Bills. The farmers of Bihar do not get the benefit of MSP and this is what the Centre wants to do to the farmers of Punjab and Haryana as well. These Bills will destroy us.”

The BKU has extended support to oppose the agriculture Bills, terming it an attempt to break the mandi system and abolish MSP. Most of the farmers of Punjab and Haryana are opposing these Bills.

Guram said that Friday’s ‘Bharat Bandh’ got maximum support from the farmers. Opposing the agriculture Bills, he said they would affect the market’s middlemen, small businessmen, farmers and labourers, and only a handful of people would benefit from them.

He alleged that through these Bills, the Central government has worked to benefit the corporates.

Various farmers’ organisations were up in arms on Friday, protesting against the agriculture Bills across the country. The Bills — the Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill 2020, The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Agricultural Services Bill 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill-2020 — have been passed by Parliament. These three Bills will replace the three ordinances promulgated on June 5.

Several political leaders, including Mahila Congress’s Ranjeeta Mehta, INLD’s young MLA candidate for Panchkula Karundeep — and the local District Bar Association extended support and showed solidarity towards the protests.

Ranjeeta also participated in a tractor rally across Barwala.

Not only the state route buses were not operated but inter-city bus services also remained shut.

The Panchkula police remained on alert throughout the day in view of the agitation by farmers in all the areas of Kalka, Pinjore, Raipurrani and Barwala areas. Separate teams were formally deployed and emergency services were also arranged to avoid inconvenience to the people during the agitation and ensure no damage to public property.

Police remained deployed on all the highways to prevent the farmers from blocking them. The protesting farmers halted at the Barwala Mandi. A large number of police personnel were deployed in all sensitive areas of the district to prevent any untoward incident amid protests.

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