The protesting farmers today threatened to hold a tractor rally on Republic Day as demonstrations around the national capital's borders escalate. "We have given a call for a tractor parade towards Delhi on January 26. Tractor parade with national flag on January 26 will be called ''Kisaan Parade'', said farmer leader Darshan Pal.
More than 850 faculty members of various educational institutions across the country have come forward with a signature campaign in support of three contentious farm laws, against which thousands of farmers are protesting on borders of the national capital for over a month.
Six round of talks have taken place between the Union government and the farmers' unions so far. While a consensus was reached on issues related to the environment and Electricity Act, the deadlock continued on the two main demands, legal assurance on Minimum Support Price (MSP) and complete rollback of the three farm laws. The next round of talks will take place on January 4.
The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Saturday said Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh could have prevented the farm laws from being passed in Parliament if he wanted but did not do so.
AAP national convenor and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal alleged that the Punjab Chief Minister is trying to protect his son from the Enforcement Directorate lens and Union Home Minister Amit Shah is also helping the Punjab CM in his tactics."
Mr Kejriwal said, "Today, a farmer has lost his life due to extreme cold weather conditions at the Gazipur border. We have lost nearly 50 farmers in this protest against the farm laws. These farms bills are not going to benefit farmers."
"Why is the Centre and the Punjab Government trying to plot against me? It is simply because I''m supporting the farmers," Mr Kejriwal said.
"I'm going to stand with the farmers till my last breath," Mr Kejriwal said.
Several leaders from Rajasthan Congress including Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, party's state unit chief Govind Singh Dotasara, former deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot will stage a protest at Jaipur's Shaheed Smarak demanding the repeal of new agriculture laws.
Meanwhile, a number of farmers are protesting at different sites in the state against the contentious Acts.
Rashtriya Loktantrik Party (RLP) has also withdrawn support from the NDA against these acts.
Punjab-based farmers have sent legal notices to Union Minister Giriraj Singh, Gujarat Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel and BJP leader Ram Madhav for their alleged defamatory/derogatory statement regarding ongoing agitation at various Delhi borders against the agriculture laws.
Due to Kisan agitation in Punjab, train movement has been affected and hence, a few trains of Western Railways have been diverted on Saturday according to the official.
The press release was issued by Sumit Thakur, Chief Public Relations Officer of Western Railway.
- Train No. 02903 Mumbai Central - Amritsar Special departed on January 2, 2021 will be diverted via Beas - Tarn Taran - Amritsar instead of Beas - Jandiala - Amritsar.
- Train No. 02904 Amritsar - Mumbai Central Special journey commencing on January 3, 2021 will be diverted via Amritsar - Tarn Taran - Beas instead of Amritsar - Jandiala - Beas.
- Train No. 02925 Bandra Terminus - Amritsar Special journey commencing on January 3, 2021 will be diverted via Beas -Tarn Taran - Amritsar instead of Beas - Jandiala - Amritsar.
- Train No. 02926 Amritsar - Bandra Terminus Special journey commencing on January 3, 2021 will be diverted via Amritsar - Tarn Taran - Beas instead of Amritsar - Jandiala - Beas.
Hitting out at the Central government for "not listening" to the farmers protesting farm laws, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi on Saturday said that the reports of death of farmers sitting on Delhi borders in this chilly weather are "disturbing" and the Centre is acting "insensitively" towards them.
"The reports of death of farmers sitting on Delhi borders in this chilly weather are disturbing. According to several media reports, nearly 57 farmers have lost their lives and hundreds have fallen sick. The Central Government is acting insensitively by not listening to the farmers'' legitimate demands which has been going on for more than a month", Priyanka Gandhi tweeted.
On December 28, 2020, Priyanka Gandhi had said, "Central Government is answerable to farmers. Government should listen to them and take back these laws."
A 75-year-old man from Uttar Pradesh was found dead today at a farmers' protest site on the Delhi-Ghaziabad border. While the police probing the case, those at the site say a note written by the dead man, Kashmir Singh Ladi, has been found in which he has expressed his frustration over the stalemate in talks with the government over the new agricultural laws that the farmers want repealed.
The Samyukt Kisan Morcha on Saturday announced that farmers will march into Delhi on January 26 with their tractors, trolleys and other vehicles if their demands are not met and also said that a "farmers'' republic parade" will take place after the official parade.
In its first press conference organized by the 7-member Coordination Committee of the Samyukt Kisan Morcha in the national capital, Samyukt Kisan Morcha, a joint front of almost 40 farmer organisations, also announced their plan of action till January 26 to intensify and deepen the agitation.
A fortnight of a nationwide campaign called "Desh Jagriti Abhiyan" from January 6 to 20 will include rallies, conferences and dharnas all over the country.
Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmer Welfare Kailash Choudhary on Saturday expressed his confidence citing that the next round of talks with farmers would bring a solution and conclude the impasse.
Speaking to ANI, Mr Choudhary said, "I am confident that in the next round of talks with farmers a solution will be reached and the ongoing protest will come to an end. The Government of India had already agreed their demands of decriminalising stubble burning, the continuance of power subsidies and provisions of civil courts."
On the issue of two key demands of farmers including a legal guarantee of minimum support prices (MSP) and repeal of three new farm laws, he said, "The three farm laws are in favour of farmers. There should be no confusion on MSP. The prime minister himself said many times that the provision of selling crops at MSP will continue."
A day after over 850 academicians came out in support of three agricultural laws, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said that the central government''s commitment to the welfare of farmers is ''unparalleled''.
"More than 850 academicians across the country have come out in support of the new farm laws, saying that they will change farmers'' fortune and will free farming from all wrong practices. Our government''s commitment to the welfare of farmers is unparalleled," Mr Javadekar tweeted.
I am confident that in the next round of talks with farmers,a solution will be reached & ongoing protest will come to an end. Three farm bills are in favour of farmers. They used to demand to get rid of middleman & sell their produce at rate of their choice: MoS Kailash Chaudhary pic.twitter.com/2eBVuKhlsX- ANI (@ANI) January 2, 2021
West Bengal: Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) activists protest in Siliguri in solidarity with farmers against farm laws (1.1.21)- ANI (@ANI) January 1, 2021
"We're opposing policies of BJP govt. How the bills were passed has set a dangerous precedent. We'll keep fighting for farmers," says a protester pic.twitter.com/eJotAku96s