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Bhagat Singh Centenary Celebrations Begin
Agitating farmers lathicharged outside
Jallianwala Bagh 
Varinder Walia
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, September 27
The day before the birth centenary celebrations of Shaheed Bhagat Singh was marred by police lathicharge and stone -pelting between agitating farmers and the police outside the Jallianwala Bagh when Vande Matram was being sung there in the presence of Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal here today.

The farmers under the banner of the Kisan Sangharsh Committee reached Jallianwala Bagh - the venue of the main function, by breaking a few nakas despite heavy police bandobast. At least eight farmers and some policemen were injured in this. Later, the agitating farmers staged a dharna outside Dharam Singh Market, near the Golden Temple.

The farmers, who had come in tractor-trailers and jeeps, were raising slogans like “Badal murdabad”. They had organised the protest march to mark 100 years of the “pagri sambhal jatta” movement.

They announced the gherao of the deputy commissioner’s office from October 15 for having failed to fulfil the demands of the farming community. Kanwalpreet Singh Pannu, convener, Kisan Sngharash Committee, said the dharna would not be lifted unless the deputy commissioner assured them to take action against the officers, including the SDM, who were responsible for using force against them. They also sought booking of those policemen who resorted to the lathi charge and stone pelting.

President of the All-India Shiromani Akali Dal Jaswant Singh Mann and Satnam Singh Kanda, secretary of the Dal, described the lathi charge as murder of democracy.

Earlier, contingents of torch-bearers from all over the state handed over their torches at a consecrate ceremony held at the Jallianwala Bagh before taking oath in front of the Shaheed Samark. The Chief Minister administered the oath to the youths dressed like Shaheed Bhagat Singh.

Earlier, Badal received the torches brought from every district and assimilated these into the Amar Jyoti at the Jallianawala Bagh. As many as 1,000 youths from Haryana also took oath.

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