No NSA on farmer leaders; SKM observes ‘Black Friday’. 10 points | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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No NSA on farmer leaders; SKM observes ‘Black Friday’. 10 points

Feb 23, 2024 01:54 PM IST

The Samyukta Kisan Morcha said farmers will take out tractor marches on highways on February 26 and hold a Mahapanchayat at Ramlila Maidan in Delhi on March 14.

The death of a young farmer in clashes with security forces at the interstate border of Punjab and Haryana appears to have galvanised the farmers' protest, with Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) set to join the agitation by observing a 'Black Friday' today. Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) leader Rakesh Tikait said that the SKM will also hold a tractor march on highways towards the national capital. The coalition of over forty Indian farmers' unions formed in 2020 to coordinate satyagragh against now-repealed three farm acts has stayed away from the fresh agitation.

Balbir Singh Rajewal along with ther leaders under the SKM interacting with media at Kisan Bhawan in Chandigarh on Wednesday. (Ravi Kumar/HT)
Balbir Singh Rajewal along with ther leaders under the SKM interacting with media at Kisan Bhawan in Chandigarh on Wednesday. (Ravi Kumar/HT)

Punjab Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee on Friday targeted the Punjab government for not filing an FIR regarding the death of the protesting youth at the Khanauri border. He said that the way the Punjab government is 'insulting the martyrdom of our martyrs' is condemnable. Sarwan Singh Pandher, the general secretary of Punjab Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee, said that the way the Punjab government is 'insulting the martyrdom of our martyrs' is condemnable.

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"Talks were being held with the Punjab Government on the death of Shubhkaran Singh. All our demands were accepted, that a case under Section 302 (murder) be filed against those who attacked, that the Punjab Government give the status of 'martyr' to Shubhkaran Singh, that discussions on compensation be held with his family, and that a Board will be constituted for his postmortem and its videography will be done. It has been more than 14 hours now but the Punjab Government is not giving any answer," the farmer leader said.

"When you give trust, why don't they live up to the trust? Either there is some problem with the officers. Only they can know what the problem is. Now, Shubhkaran Singh's body is lying in the hospital. Punjab Government is insulting the martyrdom of our martyrs, this is condemnable," Pandher said.

Punjab chief minister announced 1 crore for the family of the police firing victim and a government job for his sister.

Here are the latest updates from the farmers protest:

  1. The call for intensified protests by SKM includes a “Jan Aakrosh” rally on Friday, a nationwide tractor rally on highways on February 26, and a mahapanchayat in Delhi’s Ramlila Ground on March 14.
  2. BKU leader Rakesh Tikait said that the farmers will take tractors to the highway, and towards the way that goes to Delhi. It will be a one-day programme.
  3. The protesting farmers are expected to attend the March 14 mahapanchayat without tractors. The government keeps saying that they are not stopping us so let's see if they will stop us or not," Tikait added.
  4. The Samyukta Kisan Morcha also demanded Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar and the state home minister Anil Vij be booked for the "murder" of the protesting farmer on the Punjab-Haryana border. SKM leader Balbir Singh Rajewal also called for the resignation of Khattar and Vij.
  5. Haryana Police, meanwhile, has warned that damage to government and private property will lead to property seizure and bank account attachment of protestors. According to a release from the Ambala police, efforts by the farmers to break the barricade at the Shambhu Border and attempts to disrupt the law and order by pelting stones have caused a lot of damage to government and private property.
  6. Thousands of farmers seeking to march to the national capital remain camped at Khanauri and Shambhu borders between Punjab and Haryana agitating for their demands, including a legal guarantee for minimum support price (MSP) for crops and farm debt waiver.
  7. The farmers halted their ‘Dilli Chalo’ march for two days to take stock of the situation after the death of a farmer, identified as 21-year-old Shubkaran Singh, at the Khanauri Border crossing in Punjab.
  8. The Congress party demanded that a special session of Parliament be convened to discuss the pressing issues of the tillers. The opposition party also urged the Punjab government to convene a similar session of the state assembly to deliberate on the issue.
  9. A day after Ambala Police decided to undertake action against the protesting farmers under National Security Act (NSA), the decision was reversed on Friday.
  10. Union Agriculture Minister Arjun Munda said that though several rounds of discussions with the farmers were held, more efforts have to be made from both sides to reach a consensus. He further affirmed the central government's commitment to working for the interests of farmers.

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