Some farmer groups in Punjab continued to disrupt power supply to Reliance Jio mobile towers Sunday, despite Chief Minister Amarinder Singh’s appeals against the same. Sources said power to more than 150 mobile towers had been snapped in the past 24 hours. Till date, power supply to over 1,338 such mobile towers has been cut off.
The latest happened in Talwandi Sabo area of Bathinda. Even in Fazilka, the same thing was done in many border villages. Iinfrastructure too was damaged in some areas. In Moosa village of Mansa, one pole connected to the tower was thrown away while a cable box was also found burnt. Sources said some villagers manhandled employees of a company when they went to repair the cables.
Shingaara Singh Maan, vice-president of BKU (Ugrahan) told The Indian Express: “We never gave such a call, rather we were the first organisation to tell our members that they should not resort to snapping power supply or any other damage to mobile towers. Our focus is only on boycotting a telecom company. If anyone is doing it, they must be people who are doing it on their own as they are very angry against corporates. BKU Ugrahan has nothing to do with it.”
Dr Dharampal, president of Krantikari Kisan Union and coordinator of All India Kisan Sangrash Coordination Committee (AIKSCC), said, “We appealed to everyone in Punjab, Haryana villages… our focus is only on boycotting and nothing else.”
Jagmohan Singh, working committee member, AIKSCC, said, “The Samyukt Kisan Morcha and 32 farmer unions have issued appeals to farmers twice to avoid such actions. Our protests have remained peaceful till now and let them run in a peaceful manner ahead as well…I apprehend some miscreants as well who may be doing this as our unions have categorically told their members to focus on boycotting Jio connections.”
Amarinder had issued an appeal on Friday asking farmers not to disrupt state’s telecom services as internet network was important for many who are working from home, to hospitals and for online education.
No toll fee till demands accepted: Haryana farmers
Chandigarh: Protesting farmers in Haryana on Sunday declared they will ensure that no fee is collected by toll plazas from vehicles across the state till the Centre accepts their demands. For this, dharnas will be held at toll plazas on national highways.
Initially, the farmer unions had given a call for toll-free movement of vehicles on highways from December 25 to December 27. But with a large number of farmers moving daily to the highways to stage protests at toll plazas, they announced toll-free movement of vehicles for an indefinite period. —ENS