Blockade stays, Punjab on brink

Meeting with ministers fails | PSPCL spending Rs 5 cr daily to buy power

Blockade stays, Punjab on brink

To protest new agri laws, farmers squat on railway tracks at Jandiala Guru in Amritsar on Thursday. PTI

Chandigarh/Patiala, Oct 29

With the Bhartiya Kisan Union (Ekta Ugrahan) refusing to budge, rail services in Punjab continue to be suspended. All other 30 farm unions in the state have ended their stir against the Centre’s new farm laws.

Joginder Singh Ugrahan, the union president, said: “We are not squatting on the main railway lines. We are only holding protests outside private thermal plants and on service tracks bringing coal to these plants as part of our ‘gherao corporates’ drive.” A three-member committee of Punjab ministers met a BKU (Ugrahan) delegation here on Thursday. However, there was no breakthrough.

With the Railways refusing to resume services till the tracks are cleared, supplies have been hit. Punjab’s two of the three private thermal plants — Nabha Thermal Plant at Rajpura and Talwandi Sabo Power Limited in Mansa — have been shut. The coal stock with the Goindwal Sahib plant is depleting too. Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) has therefore opted for short-term power procurement at Rs 5 crore per day. The payment, as per the agreement, is to be cleared within 24 hours, said sources. — TNS

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