January 29, 2021 1:50:59 am
Baghpat police forcibly evicted protesting farmers, who have been staging a sit-in against the three new farm laws for the last 40 days, in Baraut town of the district late Wednesday night.
The protesting farmers were sleeping in their tents around 11 pm on Wednesday when policemen chased them away, uprooted their tents and allegedly threw away their belongings on the road.
“We have been holding a peaceful dharna for the last 40 days. We do not know why police suddenly became violent and attacked us with lathis, causing injuries to six farmers,” Brijpal Singh, one of the farmers’ leaders said.
Police have also registered an FIR against unnamed protester for alleged violation of Epidemic Diseases (Amendment) Ordinance, and CrPC section 144 (unlawful assembly), the police said, adding that the FIR was filed on a complaint lodged by the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI).
Condemning the police action on the protesting farmers, Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) leader Jayant Chaudhary tweeted,” Police lathicharged the farmers who were sleeping (in their tents) in Baraut. Are they criminals or terrorists?”.
He also tagged the photo of a blood-soaked hand of an “aged farmer” asking, if was he a terrorist.
Police claimed that the protesting farmers were removed as they were causing hindrance of the highway construction work.
“The NHAI wrote a letter to us requesting that the protesting farmers be removed from the site as their agitation was causing hindrance on the development of the highway. We have lodged the FIR against the farmers on the basis of the NHAI letter,” said Abhishek Singh,the PRO of the SP(Baghpat).
He also claimed that the police did not use force against the farmers. “We talked to them and they agreed to our request,” the PRO claimed.
Farmers in Baraut have said that they will hold a mahapanchayat on January 31 to put pressure for the repeal of the three agriculture laws.
BKU workers demonstrate outside police stations
Meanwhile, local units of Bhartiya Kisan Union(BKU) have decided to hold indefinite dharna and demonstrations outside all the police stations in Muzzafarnagar and Shamli districts from Thursday to protest against lodging of an FIR against their leader, Rakesh Tikait, in Delhi for the violence during January 26 protests.
“Our leader Rakesh Tikait and around 24 other farmers have been falsely booked by the Dehli Police in connection with the Republic Day agitation outside the Red Fort. The protesting farmers at Delhi borders have nothing to do with the miscreants who tried to malign our image at the behest of the BJP government at the Centre. We will continue our agitation till the case against our leader and others is withdrawn,” Yogesh Sharma, the general secretary of the BKU’s Muzzafarnagar unit, said.
Police in both the districts have barricaded the police stations and extra forces have been deployed.
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