Ludhiana/Abohar, January 13
Protesting farmers owing allegiance to different farm organisations burnt copies of new agriculture laws and held demonstrations at many places in the state on Lohri as a mark of protest against the legislations.
In Ludhiana, activists of the Bhartiya Kisan Union (Lakhowal) celebrated Lohri by burning copies of the central farm laws at Kohara. They asserted that they were all set to take out a tractor march in Delhi on Republic Day and make their intention known to Centre that the agitation would continue till the farm laws were scrapped.
BKU general secretary Harinder Singh Lakhowal said it was perhaps for the first time in history that farmers were observing ‘black Lohri’ in protest against the anti-farmer policies of the BJP-led central government.
“It is also for the first time that farmers have been sitting on a peaceful protest around the national capital for the past over 50 days in freezing conditions in a momentous show of unity against the highhandedness of the Centre. All along, the Narendra Modi government has been watching the situation like a mute spectator even after several farmers have lost their lives during the course of agitation,” said Lakhowal.
He said the indifferent attitude of the central government had been evident from its adamant stand in all the meetings held between the farmer unions and central ministers. He added that the government was just buying time to tire out the protesting farmers and it had no intention of accepting their demand for the rollback of agriculture laws.
Asserting that the decision of taking out a tractor march in Delhi on Republic Day was final and non-negotiable, Lakhowal claimed there was unprecedented response to the call given by the agitating farmers’ bodies to their fraternity to reach Delhi with tractors in large numbers.
Meanwhile, in Abohar, farmers burnt effigies of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, corporate houses and actor Kangana Ranaut and copies of the three central agriculture laws.
The protesters assembled at Shaheed Chowk outside Sadar Bazar, raised slogans against the central government, some big corporates and actor Kangana Ranaut and then burnt copies of the three farm laws, besides the effigies that carried pictures of Modi and others. Farmers said more batches would leave for the Delhi border soon to join the agitation.
They said it was condemnable that actors were casting aspersions on the peaceful movement even when they didn’t know about farming or the bad effect of farm laws.
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