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Uneasy calm at Shambhu border amid stir

Farm leaders ask youngsters to stay away from barricades

Uneasy calm at Shambhu border amid stir

Elderly women carrying flags gear up to take part in the protest at the Shambhu barrier on Sunday. PTI

Tribune News Service

Aman Sood

Shambhu, February 18

Two farmer leaders, spearheading the ‘Dilli Chalo’ morcha, said today that the Central Government should not adopt delaying tactics and accept their demands which had been discussed in detail before the code of conduct.

State cops on toes, mobilise resources

The Punjab Police have mobilised resources and cops have been put on alert ahead of the crucial meeting between farmer leaders and Union ministers. Cops have impounded two tractors in the past week, only to be released later following intervention by farmer unions. These tractors, meant to remove boulders, were being taken towards the Punjab-Haryana border when the cops stopped these. “We are not taking any chances and the force is on alert to ensure law and order”, said a senior cop.

The union leaders said thousands of farmers gathered at Shambhu. In case the matter was delayed, they would move to Delhi.

Since Tuesday when farmers started reaching Shambhu, thousands more had joined. “My appeal to the Narendra Modi-led Central Government is to accept our demands and not delay these any further. Otherwise we will be left with no option but to continue with our agitation, even if the code of conduct comes into force”, said farmer leader Jagjit Singh Dallewal, a couple of hours before meeting the ministers.

“I want to make it clear to everyone that we are not going back and will camp and continue our struggle until the demands are met. Delaying these further will help no one,” said Dallewal.

“You people (the farmers at Shambhu) should know that as we go and meet the ministers, the final outcome will be shared with you and tomorrow we again meet and decide our future course of action depending upon the outcome of the meeting with the three ministers”, said Bharti Kisan Union (Ekta Sidhupur) chief Dallewal.

He appealed to youngsters to keep the agitation peaceful as breaking barricades was not the target, but the aim was to “get a solution for the farmers”.

Punjab Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee general secretary Sarwan Singh Pandher said the government should show seriousness towards resolving this issue and bring an ordinance on giving a legal guarantee to the MSP.

“The only solution is to ensure that the farmers get their legitimate rights. The ministers should give us in writing and not delay the MSP ordinance,” he said.

Earlier today, there were no untoward incidents reported at the Shambhu barrier as farmer union members kept calm and Haryana cops did not fire any more tear gas shells or smoke bombs. “We have ensured a peaceful protest and not allowing anyone to go near the barricades. We will wait for our leaders to return from Chandigarh and announce the next course of action,” said farmer union members.

Three Union ministers Piyush Goyal, Arjun Munda and Nityanand Rai and farmer union leaders have earlier met thrice but the talks remained inconclusive and the farmer union members are sitting in protest at Shambhu and Khanauri.

Meanwhile, thousands of farmers have continued to sit on a dharna at the Shambhu and Khanauri borders since Tuesday morning.

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#Dilli Chalo Farmers Protest #Farmers Protest

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