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SKM Gives 'Clean Chit' to Delhi Violence Accused Lakha Sidhana as Protest Sites See Fewer Numbers

File image of  Lakha Sidhana (in white shirt and sweater), an accused in Jan 26 Delhi violence, was seen at a farmers' rally in Bathinda.  (ANI)

File image of Lakha Sidhana (in white shirt and sweater), an accused in Jan 26 Delhi violence, was seen at a farmers' rally in Bathinda. (ANI)

Several farmer groups have said Lakha Sidhana is needed back at protest sites as the movement needs youth to take it forward.

While gangster-turned-activist Lakhvir Singh alias Lakha Sidhana is evading arrest for his alleged role in the January 26 violence in national capital, several farmer groups protesting against the three agrarian laws have reportedly ‘resolved’ all issues with him and have allowed him back to the protesting sites. This comes at a time when ‘fatigue’ factor seems to have set in over the stir that has been going on for nearly six months now. The Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) has decided to give a clean chit to Sidhana and want him to be part of the agitation, a statement issued by farmer leader Darshan Pal said.

“The 32 farmer unions of Punjab and the SKM have decided to move on because the agitation needs young blood such as Lakha Sidhana. We thank all the associations, leaders, Sikh thinkers, players and artists who supported us,” the statement said. Leaders confirmed that the group had resolved all issues with Sidhana and will be a part of the morcha.

While Sidhana has been at large since January 26 violence at the Red Fort, he has been appearing in public places and garnering support for the farmers’ protest through social media posts. Sidhana even held a rally in Punjab’s Patiala after making an announcement on Facebook. But before police could reach, he had left from the spot after addressing the crowd. He has also been reportedly holding group meetings away from media and police attention.

“Despite the charges framed against him, none can ignore the clout that he has, especially among the youth of the state. The response to his Patiala rally was one such indicator. His supporters believe he has done nothing wrong and has been framed. Even the unions fighting against the laws think the same,” a senior farmer leader said. He said that his posts on social media platforms also draw a lot of support.

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Leaders of the Samyukt Kisan Morcha believe that they need youth in their agitation for it to move forward. “Youth can be drawn if there are people like Sidhana joining this movement,” the leader said.