Farmers marching from Singhu border breach barricades, police fire tear gas
Hundreds of farmers, marching from Singhu border to Delhi during a tractor rally against the new agriculture laws, on Tuesdabreached barricades as tractors moved in prompting the police to fire tear gas at the protesters. Some of the farmers driving cranes removed the cement barricades as some on horses breached them.
The tractor rally from Singhu border had come to a halt near Sanjay Gandhi Transport Nagar on the GT Karnal Road, about 13km from Delhi. The farmers were supposed to take a right and move away from GT Karnal Road but insisted on marching ahead. Even as the police announced requesting them to take the route decided upon, some farmers' leaders met with additional commissioner of police AK Singla. "This is the oldest national highway. You have to realize its significance," Singla told them.
Amid the chaos, people used bare hands to push away heavy cement blocks and a horse rider pulled out a sword to threaten paramilitary personnel. Farmers also pelted stones on security personnel firing tear gas. Some of the protesters moved their tractors into the prohibited route and were on course to the Ring Road as they took over both the carriageways of the GT Karnal Road.
Groups of protesting farmers camping at Tikri and Ghazipur border points also broke police barricades to force their way into the city, much ahead of the time they were granted permission by Delhi Police for their tractor parade.
Protesting farmers broke the police barricades at Tikri and Singhu borders and move towards Delhi on their tractors, motorcycles and SUVs. Many farmers started their march on foot and they showered petals on the security forces, including Delhi Police personnel. At the Tikri border, senior Delhi Police officials tried to appraise the farmers about the law and order situation but the protesters removed barricades while showering petals on them. The farmers had started the tractor march before the planned time between the farm leaders and administration.
A long line of tractor-trolleys, cars, motorcycles and other vehicles could be seen on the Ambala-Delhi stretch and Rohtak-Delhi highway on the occasion of Republic day. The farmers said they will reach Delhi while holding a peaceful protest march and the senior farm leaders were continuously making announcements to follow their guidelines and carry out the tractor march peacefully.
Satnam Singh Pannu, the president of Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Samiti, said they will not follow the route given by the Delhi Police to hold their tractor march. “We will hold our tractor march on the Outer Ring Road and we have given 45 minutes time to Delhi Police to remove the barricades and give us a clear path,” he told reporters.
The farmers are also showing tableau of their respective states at both the borders.
Farmers have been protesting on the different borders of the national capital since November 26 against the three newly enacted farm laws - Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020; the Farmers Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and farm Services Act 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020.
The eleventh round of talks between farmers and the government was held last Friday. The talks of farmers' unions and the government have seemingly broken down after the former insisted on their demand for the repeal of three new farm laws and the latter asked them to reconsider its offer to put these laws on hold for about 18 months. Union agriculture minister Narendra Singh Tomar on Monday said that the agitation against the farm laws which has been going on for almost two months will end soon.
(With agency inputs)