A 32-year-old farmer was found dead on Tuesday morning near Delhi-Haryana border where protesters have been camping for around two weeks against the centre's controversial agricultural laws.
Braving winter chill, Ajay More from Haryana's Sonipat had been protesting along with fellow villagers for 10 days at the Singhu border. He is believed to have died due to hypothermia "prima facie", Chief Medical Officer Sonipat said.
Ajay is survived by his elderly parents, wife and three children. At least five deaths have been reported since the protests began.
Thousands of farmers last month started a massive agitation - biggest in the last few years - amid the novel coronavirus pandemic against the laws which, they say, will leave them at the mercy of private players. The government has assured the laws will bring about much-needed reforms.
They've also been demanding written assurance from the government on the guaranteed minimum support price or MSP for their produce.
Last night, Home Minister Amit Shah met a farmers' delegation, hours after a nationwide strike - Bharat Bandh - led to blocking of highways, affecting transport services and supply of essentials in some states.
Many trade unions and opposition leaders backed the protest call. Several parties, like the Trinamool Congress in Bengal, Telangana's ruling party - the TRS - and the Aam Aadmi Party in Delhi, held peaceful demonstrations.
However, the talks between Amit Shah and the protesters failed to resolve the deadlock, with both sides remaining firm on their positions. The sixth round of centre's talks with the protesters - scheduled for today - were also cancelled.
The farmers' unions met this afternoon at the Singhu border to plan their future course of action. Representatives from several opposition parties also plan to meet President Ram Nath Kovind today on the farmers' issues.