January 21, 2021 12:39:41 am
With a large number of farmers from Haryana and Punjab planning to move to Delhi in their tractors to join the ‘tractor parade’ on the occasion of Republic Day, senior officers of Haryana Police are keeping close eye on the developments related to the ongoing farmers’ stir.
“Situation is evolving as talks are going on. We are watching it and keeping our options open,” a senior police officer told The Indian Express Wednesday. Rothak range ADGP Sandeep Khirwar also went to Delhi Wednesday to attend a meeting held between the farmer leaders and Delhi Police officers. Official sources said that the central government officers are telling farmers that they can’t allow them to undertake a “tractor parade” in Delhi on January 26.
“The farmers want they should be allowed to undertake tractor parade on Outer Ring Road of Delhi assuring the authorities that they will remain within discipline like they had exercised during their tractor march on KMP Expressway few days back. However, the government is suggesting the farmers to hold the tractor parade on KMP Expressway this time too. The central government says if tractor parade is held in Delhi, it may cause major traffic disruption on January 26. Since, it is a project in the making, we are watching the situation. We will take a call at an appropriate time,” said a Haryana government official.
The official admitted that they have reports regarding the planning of movement of a large number of fresh cavalcades of tractors from Punjab and Haryana to the national capital before January 26 as the practice marches of tractors have already been undertaken in several parts of the both states. The official further admitted that the agitation has spread further in the past few days.
“With the agitation getting longer, it is making more impact,” added the official requesting anonymity.
Meanwhile, farmers in different parts of Haryana are busy in finalising their cavalcades of tractors to move to the national capital. In many villages, there will be long cavalcade of tractors heading to Delhi.
A retired agriculture scientist, Dr Ram Kanwar, 77, said he has never seen such a movement in Haryana.
“For the initial 15 days of the current phase of farmers’ agitation, it was limited largely to some pockets of Haryana but now it has spread to 80-90 per cent of the state. Now, there seem activities in Haryana even more than of Punjab. Irrespective of caste and religion, farmers in large numbers from every corner of Haryana have now joined the agitation. The agitation has shown how such a big mass movement can be undertaken for so long peacefully,” added Kanwar, a retired agricultural scientist of Chaudhary Charan Singh Haryana Agricultural University, Hisar.
A retired IAS officer of Haryana, S K Goyal, said that there is anger among the masses over the issue of three farm laws. Goyal has travelled over half a dozen villages in Haryana to make the farmers aware about the adverse effects of three farm laws, which are being termed as “anti-farmer” by the agitators.
“People want that regime of minimum support price (MSP) of crops, the current mandi system and public distribution system (PDS) should continue. The common man has fear the three farm laws will weaken the mandi (APMC) system, which will further erode the public distribution system and affect food security. Even the arhtiyas (middle men) have apprehensions that the new laws will affect their businesses. There is a feeling among the farmers that the corporates will exploit them after introduction of three farm laws. I feel that the apprehensions are not baseless with lot of shortcomings in these laws,” said Goyal, a former Special Secretary (Home) of Haryana government.
Goyal further said, “The government should repeal these laws as early as possible because so many people are sitting on dharnas against these laws and many of them have lost their lives. The incumbent government will face the music in the long run and will lose the base among masses, if the laws are not repealed soon.”
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