The Samyukt Kisan Morcha and All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (AIKSCC), in a joint statement said more than 50,000 farmers were expected to be at Delhi’s borders by Thursday evening, and that their “numbers are expected to swell through the night as thousands of tractors and trolleys are carrying farmers, women and children from interior areas of Punjab”.
The statement criticised the “inhuman, anti-people, RSS-BJP Haryana government” for using force against the farmers. It said “massive protests have been reported from farmers and industrial workers in East UP, Bihar, West Bengal, Odisha, Telangana, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat and Maharashtra”, as well.
Protesters including women and children, gathered at the Shambhu barrier near Ambala, told The Indian Express that the governments in Haryana and at the Centre would not be able to stop them from reaching Delhi.
“It is a huge mistake on the part of the Haryana government. Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar should have understood our plight and allowed us to peacefully march… Nobody can stop us,” a protester said.
Another protester added: “We have enough supplies to camp in Delhi for at least six months. We are ready to spend all winter in the capital, until the Centre listens to our legitimate demands and withdraws the farm laws.”
Among the participants of the “Delhi Chalo” march at Shambhu barrier was Sukhbir Kaur, 51, who had come from Mangat village of Dasuya along with her young daughter Gursimrat. There was also retired FCI manager Gurnam Singh Dhumma, and 15-year-old schoolboy Sachin Sharma.
“Khattar should not have stopped us, he should know that you can’t cow down a Punjabi,” Rajinder Singh, leader of the Kirti Kisan Union from Mansa, said. Rajinder and a large group of about 2,000 protesters broke through the barricades on the Sardulgarh-Sirsa road around 1 pm. “Haryana Police stopped us, but Haryanvi villagers served us langar at Hanspur village,” Rajinder said.
Police accused the farmers of violence. “They threw stones when the police stopped them from moving into Haryana (from Punjab). The police asked them to leave their tractors at the border and move on foot. Legal action will be taken against those who have broken the law,” Hisar range IGP Sanjay Kumar said.
Haryana DGP Manoj Yadava said protesters from Punjab had pelted nakas at Dabwali (Sirsa), Dhanori (Data Singhwala), and Tohana with stones. “They dismantled the police nakas by using unlawful force. They have tried to travel towards Delhi. We have delayed their movement a lot by installing nakas at multiple places. They are trying to jam the capital, which shouldn’t be allowed,” Yadava told The Indian Express.
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