Strong police resistance forces farmers to retreat

Protesters head back to border areas

The day-long parallel Republic Day parade of the farmers did not go as planned for most of them as their attempt to enter the heart of the Capital was met with strong resistance from Delhi police personnel.

Harish Chandra, 24, a wheat farmer from Hathras in Uttar Pradesh, said he and other members of his group have been forced to return to Ghazipur border, where they have been camping, as police had barricaded all entry points towards India Gate.

“We are heading back to Ghazipur, but not going back home. We will continue with the protest until the three farm laws are repealed,” said Jhandha Singh, 62, a sugarcane farmer from Amroha in U.P., sitting at the back of a trailer fitted to a tractor.

When asked if the tractor parade was going to have any impact on the Centre, Mr. Singh said: “Yes, this should impact them. They should know by now that we are not going back until our demands are met.”

The farmers who had been stationed at Singhu and Ghazipur border had started their parade early in the morning. By noon, there was over a kilometre-long traffic snarl on both side of the road leading to ITO crossing.

A group of farmers from Ghazipur side, who could not move any further towards ITO, decided to return back, while others decided to keep moving ahead.

By 4 p.m., the news of the death of a farmer at the ITO crossing had spread quickly. “The body is lying at the ITO crossing since 1 p.m.,” said Sukhwant Singh, 45, a wheat farmer from Punjab, who was heading back to Singhu border.

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