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Farmers’ Protest: Punjab Farmers Face Water Cannons, Push Through Haryana Barricades in March to Delhi

Ambala: Police personnel use water canons on farmers to stop them from crossing the Punjab-Haryana border during 'Delhi Chalo' protest march against the new farm laws, near Ambala, Thursday, Nov. 26, 2020. (PTI Photo)

Ambala: Police personnel use water canons on farmers to stop them from crossing the Punjab-Haryana border during 'Delhi Chalo' protest march against the new farm laws, near Ambala, Thursday, Nov. 26, 2020. (PTI Photo)

The Haryana Police on Thursday used water cannons and tear gas to disperse a group of farmers from Punjab who allegedly tried to jump police barricades to enter Haryana as part of their 'Delhi Chalo' march against the Centre's new farm laws.

The Haryana Police on Thursday used water cannons and tear gas to disperse a group of farmers from Punjab who allegedly tried to jump police barricades to enter Haryana as part of their ‘Delhi Chalo’ march against the Centre’s new farm laws. The Haryana Police officials at the Shambhu inter-state border with Punjab used loud speakers, asking farmers who had assembled on the Punjab side to disperse when some of them tried to cross and remove the barricades. The situation remained tense at the Shambu inter-state border on the national highway as protesting farmers threw police barricades into the Ghaggar river. Some of the protestors were also seen waving black flags. Multi-level barricading has been put by Haryana Police to prevent the farmers from moving towards the national capital. A farmer from Punjab present at the site told reporters, It is condemnable that Haryana Police is using such measures to suppress an assembly of peaceful protesters. We are protesting in a peaceful manner, but they want to prevent us from using our democratic right to protest. Earlier on Wednesday, a large group of Haryana farmers near Mohra village in Ambala jumped over the barricades following which the police resorted to the use of water cannon against them. Delhi metro services from neighbouring cities to the national capital will remain suspended till further orders in view of the planned protest march by farmers against the Centre’s new farm laws, said Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC). However, train services from the Delhi to the neighbouring NCR cities resumed after 2 pm on Thursday.

Here are the latest updates:

• The farmers here are agitating against the bills that they (Centre) have brought. You can’t stop a person going to your capital city where Parliament is and expressing their views. Why are you stopping them? Stopping farmers is going against the Constitutional spirit and freedom of speech of this country. I think the Haryana government should have allowed them to go and Delhi govt should give them space to go and sit down to present their point. If you try to stop them (farmers) then every reaction has a counter reaction: Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh.

• Hours after Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh criticised police action against farmers marching peacefully towards Delhi against the contentious farm laws, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday announced full support to them and agreed to join the protests, if invited. “The farm bills have snatched the rights of the farmers. This Bill is against farmers, it will pave the way for the middleman and there will be more corruption," she said. “The way peaceful farmers were treated (at the Delhi border) is highly condemnable. They (Centre) cannot snatch the democratic rights of the farmers. I fully support their protest and if invited, I can also join.”


• The central government is treating farmers as “enemy of the State", SAD leader Harsimrat Kaur Badal alleged, condemning the use of force to stop them from marching towards Delhi in protest against the Centre’s farm laws. Badal had resigned from the Union Cabinet in September in protest against three farm sector bills, which later got the President’s assent after being passed by Parliament. She was the Union minister for food processing industries.

• As advised by Delhi Police, Metro services will be available only from Delhi towards the NCR sections tomorrow. However, services from the NCR stations towards Delhi will not be available due to security reasons till further notice: Delhi Metro Rail Corporation

WATCH | Haryana Police use water cannon and tear-gas shells in Karnal to disperse farmers from Punjab heading towards Delhi.

• Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath directs the officials concerned to take strict action against those compromising on the interest of farmers in paddy purchase and said there was a need to give further momentum to the procurement process. In a meeting to review the paddy purchase, the chief minister said the government is directly purchasing the produce from farmers as their interest was the top priority and so no laxity in the procurement would be tolerated.

• Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh says he is shocked at Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar’s response. “It’s the farmers who’ve to be convinced on MSP, not me. You should’ve tried to talk to them before their Dilli Chalo. And if you think I’m inciting farmers then why are Haryana farmers also marching to Delhi?," says Singh.

• “Today is Punjab’s 26/11. We are witnessing end of right to democratic protest. Akali Dal condemns Haryana govt & Centre for choosing to repress peaceful farmer movement. Battle for Punjab farmers’ rights can’t be throttled by using water cannons against them," tweets SAD Chief.

• Farmers don’t want to begin their campaign under any political flag. Farmers of all parties stand united on this (Farm Laws) issue. Captain Amarinder Singh played the most bungling role as he didn’t protest at all. A CM’s pressure on Centre matters a lot. If CM wants, he can resolve a lot of things. Captain Amarinder Singh should have put pressure by going to Delhi and holding a meeting with Centre. Also, I want to appeal farmers of Haryana that they should support Punjab farmers, says Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) Chief Sukhbir Singh Badal on Farmers’ protest.

• Haryana Police use water cannon to disperse farmers who have gathered in Karnal and are proceeding towards Delhi to protest against farm laws.

• Security tightened and barricading being done at Singhu border (Delhi-Haryana border) in view of farmers’ ‘Delhi Chalo’ call.

• Delhi Police personnel have been deployed in large numbers in the border areas of the national capital and all incoming vehicles are being checked in view of the ‘Delhi Chalo’ march by Punjab farmers against the Centre’s farm laws. Five sand-laden trucks have been stationed at Singhu border to stop tractors being driven by the protesters. Also, drones have been deployed for security purposes. While clarifying that the borders have not been sealed, police officials said all pickets have been made active, while all vehicles entering the national capital were being checked. According to officials, it was decided that Delhi Metro trains connecting the neighbouring cities in the NCR would not cross the national capital border till 2 pm today.

• Hundreds of farmers led by Medha Patkar have been stopped from entering Uttar Pradesh near the Saiyan village in Agra district close to the Rajasthan border. The agitating farmers from Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh were headed for Delhi to join the demonstration against the farm laws. Police and senior administrative officials from Agra and Rajasthan’s Dholpur have been holding discussions with the protesters to allow the traffic movement. A long queue of vehicles from both sides disrupted the traffic movement. The agitators have sat on a dharna, and Medha Patkar is on a 12-hour long fast. The group headed by Medha Patkar had reached the Agra border Wednesday night and was prevented from entering Agra.

• Delhi metro services to neighbouring cities of the national capital will remain suspended till 2 pm on Thursday in view of a planned protest march by farmers against the Centre’s new farm laws. In a late evening statement, the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation said no metro services will be available from Anand Vihar to Vaishali and New Ashok Nagar to Noida City Centre during this period. The metro services will also be suspended between Sultanpur and Guru Dronacharya metro stations. However, regular metro services will remain available in the entire section of Airport and Rapid Metro lines during the period. “After 2 pm on Thursday, train services will resume on all Lines from end to end without loops regularly," it added. Earlier in the day,Delhi Police said it has rejected requests received from various farmer organisations to protest in the national capital against the contentious laws on November 26 and 27.

• Haryana put up road barricades at its border with Punjab as farmers in the adjoining state massed with their tractor-trailers ahead of a planned “Delhi Chalo" march today to protest against the Centre’s new farm laws. The BJP government in Haryana has said it will seal its borders with Congress-run Punjab for the next two days, stopping farmers on their march to Delhi. In Haryana, police used water cannons at least twice Wednesday to disperse protesting farmers and stop them from going to Delhi. The Haryana authorities also imposed prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the CrPC in several parts of the state to prevent assembly of protesters. Haryana also suspended its bus service to Punjab for November 26 and 27, said state Transport Minister Mool Chand Sharma.

• The Chandigarh Transport Undertaking (CTU) suspended its bus services to Haryana for the next two days. It said in a release that the CTU operations in Punjab and Himachal Pradesh may also get affected.

• Braving the cold and rainy conditions, thousands of farmers assembled with their tractor-trailers near the Haryana borders in Punjab. Farmer bodies said they will hold a dharna wherever stopped from moving towards the national capital.

• Bharatiya Kisan Union (Ekta-Ugarhan) general secretary Sukhdev Singh Kokrikalan on Wednesday said around 25,000 women will participate in the protest march and over 4,000 tractor-trailers have been arranged it. The BKU (Ekta-Ugrahan) has claimed that over two lakh farmers associated with it will enter Haryana through Khanauri and Dabwali.

• Farmers have brought ration, vegetables, wood and other essentials for their march. In view of cold weather conditions, they have stocked quilts, blankets and covered their trolleys with tarpaulin. We are ready for the battle, which may last long, said Kokrikalan.

• Farmers having association with 30 organisations from Moga, Fazilka, Bathinda and other areas are reaching Mehlan Chowk in Sangrur. Even if it takes a month or so, we are not worried. We will not return till these laws are scrapped, a farmer said at Khanauri village in Sangrur.

• Haryana BKU chief Gurnam Singh told reporters, “Even if police use lathis and force, nothing can stop farmers. We will continue our march towards Delhi. We will force the Centre to roll back these black anti-farmer laws.” Farmers were seen carrying food and clothes and had stocked other essentials in their tractor-trailers and planned to spend the night either in their vehicles or temporary shelters they had set up along the national highway to Delhi.

• Police are keeping vigil over farmers with drones. A Punjab Police official on duty at Sangrur’s Khanauri told reporters that the Haryana Police used cranes to put boulders on roads and the movement of traffic to the other side has been stopped. “We are diverting traffic to alternate routes now. We are also ensuring that the movement of essential goods is not affected," he said. Earlier on Tuesday, a detailed advisory was issued by the Haryana Police, urging commuters to modify their travel plans.

• Asserting that farmers from Punjab will not be allowed to enter the state, police said they have deployed water cannons and riot vehicles at the state borders. Meanwhile, Haryana Congress president Kumari Selja on Wednesday said the Congress stands shoulder-to-shoulder with farmers.

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first published:November 26, 2020, 09:04 IST