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Farmers’ tableaux portray constraints posed by farm laws

On the lines of the official Republic Day parade, the tractor rally led by farmers also featured tableaux depicting different themes related to farmers and their protest against the new farm laws
By Sadia Akhtar, Gurugram
PUBLISHED ON JAN 26, 2021 11:05 PM IST

On the lines of the official Republic Day parade, the tractor rally led by farmers also featured tableaux depicting different themes related to farmers and their protest against the new farm laws.

While the tractor march from Dharuhera was led by one tableau, farmers camping at Shahjahanpur had prepared tableaux from different states mounted on 27 tractors. Besides the state-specific tableaux, a special tableau dedicated to farmers who had died during the course of the agitation was also displayed by protesters from Shahjahanpur.

According to the protesters at Dharuhera, their tableau was meant to demonstrate why they believed the three contentious farm laws were perilous. Amandeep Singh Godara, who stood on the tableau with a symbolic noose around his neck, said that the idea behind the tableau was to visually demonstrate that the farm laws had dealt a deathly blow to farmers.

“We have a noose around our neck to show that the government’s actions and treatment of farmers are killing us. While farmers are unhappy and dying under the weight of debt, the government, corporations and pro-establishment media are celebrating our misery,” said Godara, who was dressed in a white dhoti-kurta and turban.

A resident of Sirsa, Godara has been involved in the protests since November.

Besides the noose, farmers on this tableau had placards affixed to their chests to portray that farmers, labour and small businessmen would suffer due to the three laws. Posters of peasant leader Chhotu Ram were also plastered on the tableaux.

Saddam Hussain, a farmer from Hanumangarh, said that the tableaux were a visual demonstration that farmers were not free due to the constraints posed by the three laws.

Each of the tableaux led by the farmers from Shahjahanpur included pictures of important cultural identifiers of different states, besides a special tableau dedicated to farmers who had died during the protests.

Sanjay Madhav, state convener, All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee, Rajasthan, said that the tableaux gave glimpses of the village life in different states. “ The tableaux encapsulated the sacrifices made by farmers who had died in the protests so far. Besides this special dedication, other tableaux were state-specific,” said Madhav.

Protesters said that farmers from multiple states, including Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, Maharashtra and Kerala, took part in the tractor rally on Tuesday.

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