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Punjab farmers planning to resume Delhi march

The number of protesters dwindles at Shambhu and Khanauri border sites | Haryana farmers extending much needed support

Punjab farmers planning to resume Delhi march

Farmers at the protest site at Shambhu border on Friday. Tribune photo



Tribune News Service

Neeraj Mohan

Khanauri/Shambhu, June 21

Nearly four months after their initial efforts failed to elicit a positive response from the Union Government regarding their pending demands, farmers associated with the Samyukt Kisan Morcha (Non-political) now considering a renewed call to resume the ‘Dilli Chalo’ march. This would be there third attempt as they had made two attempts on February 13 and 21.

National executive meeting of SKM (Non-political) in Karnataka on June 24

The national executive of the SKM (Non-political) will hold a meeting at Shimoga in Karnataka on June 24 to decide the strategy to pressurise the government for their 12 demands, including guaranteed MSP for all 23 crops as per the C2+50% formula of the Swaminathan Commission and a loan waiver.

Haryana farmers extending much needed support

We are all united as our demands are the same. Farmers from Haryana are providing all support we need. We are going to start district-level meetings of farmers of Haryana and a special campaign on these demands will be launched in Haryana in first week of September. — Abhimanyu Kohar, SKM (NP) leader from Haryana

“We are waiting for a call from our leaders to resume the Delhi march. We have heard that they will make the decision soon after the transplantation of paddy is completed,” said Baldev Singh, a farmer from Amritsar sitting among a group of protesting farmers at Khanauri border.

“The Lok Sabha elections have changed the political landscape. The BJP and Prime Minister Modi are under pressure from alliance partners. In Haryana, Manohar Lal Khattar has been removed as the CM. We believe this is the best time to resume the Delhi march ahead of the Haryana Assembly elections,” said another farmer Gurmej Singh from Mucchal village in Amritsar district.

However, the farmer leaders are keeping mum over their further course of action as Sarwan Singh Pandher, coordinator of the Kisan Mazdoor Morcha (KMM) as well as the Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee (KMSC), said “we will soon disclose everything”.

The number of farmers at the protests has reduced significantly, with only a few elderly farmers remaining in the temporary sheds set up on tractor-trailers along the highways. “Now, there are very few farmers, but our numbers will swell whenever required. We will call more farmers, even women, if necessary,” said Narinder Singh, another farmer from Amritsar.

A closer look at the camps reveals that very few farmers are left, with only empty sheds and tractor-trailers marking the protest, which has been ongoing since February 13, when the Haryana Police prevented them from entering the state. Farmers have made alternate arrangements to carry on their work back home, with those in the villages taking care of the fields and cattle. “Asi tan othey vi velle hi han, te aithe vi (We are idle both here and there),” said Sahab Singh, a farmer from Sangra village in Amritsar district.

“Big farmers provide financial support while small farmers lead the protest. Since all farmers cannot stay here for long, we keep rotating,” explained Narinder Singh.

When asked if joining the protest was a wrong decision, Narinder Singh firmly replied, “No. Our protest is not wrong, but it is delayed by 10 years. The protest should have been launched a decade ago.”

Currently, there is no work pending as the paddy sowing season is about to start in their region. To ensure a steady presence, farmers maintain daily attendance records at the protest. Every morning, all farmers at the Shambu border assemble near the temporary stage for an address by their leaders.

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#Dilli Chalo Farmers Protest #Farmers Protest #Samyukt Kisan Morcha


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