Patiala, September 15
Alleging harassment by agents of microfinance companies, rural women, along with members of the Zameen Prapti Sangharsh Committee, today held a protest march here.
The protesters were stopped by a heavy police force while they were marching towards the residence of Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh.
The protesters then staged a sit-in near Government Ayurvedic College before they were taken into custody by the police. Hundreds of protesters were taken to different police stations in buses. They were later released. Lakhs of rural women in Punjab, who had started their own businesses after taking loan from micro finance companies, have been pushed into a debt trap owing to the Covid onslaught.
The protesters said agents of microfinance companies were harassing women to recover loan of instalments.
Raj Kaur, a protester, said, “The matter is still sub-judice, however, the agents of these companies continue to harass us. How come the government can waive loans of big corporate houses and not of poor women.” The police booked more than 150 protesters under Sections 353, 332, 186, 188, 149, 269, 270, 283, 160 of the IPC, Section 51 of the Disaster management Act, 2005 and Section 3 of the Epidemic Disease (Amendment) Ordinance, 2020.
A police officer said four police personnel got injured in the protest. — TNS
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