About two dozen farmers were arrested on Saturday when they tried to hold a ‘traditional sports’ match near the Formula One venue. They were later let off.
“Nobody will be allowed to disrupt the event,” said Ajay Choudhary, SHO, Dankaur.
Bhitti Ram, a farmer, said, “We didn’t want to disrupt the race. We wanted to play kabaddi as a token protest to let the world see the reality. Our land was acquired for the race but our kids have been denied to watch it.” Farmers said they are unable to witness the race due to high ticket prices. “There is no sporting facility in our villages. Nobody cares for us,” Ram said.
Farmers from villages along the Nodia-Agra Yamuna Expressway, however, said they have no intentions to obstruct the motor race as it is a matter of pride for the country.
“Though the land acquisition cases are yet to be decided by the high court, we feel justice will be done. There are no intentions to disrupt the race,” said farmer leader Ajay Pal Sharma.
Earlier, farmers whose land was acquired for the project had sent ‘an open letter’ to Uttar Pradesh chief minister Mayawati, threatening to disrupt the race if their demands were not met in a week. Nearly 1,000 hectares were acquired and given to Jaypee Sports for the construction of a Rs 1,700-crore F1 track.