Several farmers’ unions today held protests at various places in Punjab in support of their demands including debt waiver and compensation to families of farmers who committed suicides.
A large number of farmers assembled at district headquarters at 16 locations and staged protests and blocked road traffic against the SAD-BJP led government in the state for its “anti-farmers” policies.
“Protests were held in Mansa, Bathinda, Barnala, Sangrur, Moga, Amritsar, Patiala and Muktsar,” said Sukhdev Singh Kokri, general secretary, Bhartiya Kisan Union (Ugrahan).
“Farmers in large number supported the indefinite protest,” Kokri said, adding that “Unions had decided that farmers would not return to their homes till their demands were met.”
He said police had stopped him at various places from marching towards Chandigarh to hold protest, while alleging that “In Tarn Taran, police resorted to cane charge in which several farmers sustained injuries.”
In Moga, around 100 farmers blocked kishanpura Dharamkot road when police did not allow them to go towards Chandigarh to hold their protest in early hours.
Farmers lifted their dharna after 2 PM following which normal traffic resumed.
In Chandigarh, security personnel were deployed in strength at Chandigarh-Mohali border areas in the wake of protest.
Leaders of various unions criticized the present government at the Centre for not addressing the long pending issues of farmers.
They also lashed out at Parkash Singh Badal government in the state, alleging that numbers of farmers suicides have increased during SAD-BJP regime as the regime “failed” to address farmers’ concerns.
The leaders also sought Rs 5-lakh compensation to families of suicide victims as well as a government job for one of their kin and new tubewell connections along with the installation cost and 24-hour supply to the farm sector.
The unions include BKU (Dakonda), Jhanda Singh Jethuke of BKU (Ugrahan), Chhinder Singh of BKU (Krantikari) and Jasvir Singh of Azad Kisan Sangharsh Committee.