‘Farmers will set up tents in police stations, DM offices’: Rakesh Tikait on attempts to remove them at Ghazipur
Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) leader Rakesh Tikait on Sunday alleged that the administration was trying to take down the tents of the farmers protesting against the three farm laws at the site in Ghazipur border between Delhi and Uttar Pradesh.
“We have come to know that the administration is trying to pull down the tents here with the help of JCB. If they do that, the farmers will set up their tents at police stations and DM offices,” news agency ANI quoted Tikait as saying.
“If there is an attempt to forcibly remove the farmers from the borders, then they will make government offices across the country into Galla Mandi,” Tikait also tweeted.
The Union government enacted the three contentious farm laws in September last year and several farmer unions have been protesting against them at the borders of Delhi for almost a year now. The protests, spearheaded by the BKU and the Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM), an umbrella body of several farmer unions, began in November 2020 with the participation of farmers mostly from neighbouring Haryana and Punjab.
Tikait’s remarks came two days after the Delhi Police began removing the barricades at the Ghazipur and Tikri borders where the protests were going on. The barricades were removed with the intention of restoring the movement of traffic.
Meanwhile, the SKM said that the removal of barricades vindicated their stand that it was the police who were blocking the movement of traffic and not the protests. “Police had fortified the protest sites by placing huge cement boulders, multiple layers of metal barricades, and sand trucks across the roads, apart from fixing spikes on the road. As part of the latest narrative that they are trying to spin, partial removal of these barricades has been taken up, ostensibly to impress the Supreme Court,” it said in a statement earlier on Friday.
The Supreme Court on October 21 said that the farmers have the right to protest but couldn’t block the roads indefinitely. “Farmers have a right to agitate even if there is a legal challenge pending. We have no difficulty on that as we feel people have a right to go to the streets and protest. But roads cannot be blocked and ultimately some solution must be found,” the bench of justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and MM Sundresh said on Thursday.