It has been sixty days since the farmers’ protests against the recently passed agricultural laws started on the borders of the national capital. There have been eleven rounds of meetings between farm leaders and government officials. While the farmers are hell-bent on a complete withdrawal of the laws, no consensus has been reached yet.
The most recent controversy regarding the ongoing protests have been the farmers claiming to have caught a man on Friday, 22 January, night, who they say was conspiring to spread violence in the movement and specifically attack four farm leaders.
Considering the time that has passed since the farmer protests began, know of these ten recent big things related to the farmers’ movement.
The 11th round of meetings between the government and farmers on Friday, 22 January, was inconclusive. After lunch break, the meeting did not resume. No date was given for another round of talks at the end of this meeting either.
Considering that there has been no solution yet, the farmers have said they are going to intensify the demonstrations. On the cards is a tractor rally scheduled for 26 January. Farmers have claimed they got the approval from Delhi police for holding a 100 km rally.
The police, however, did not confirm this news. Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Delhi Police were to decide these routes with mutual support so as to ensure that the rally starts and ends peacefully. Speaking to NDTV, Delhi Police Commissioner SN Shrivastava said, "Farmers have not given us any route in writing. We will let you know once we receive a route in a written form."
Farmers protesting at the Singhu border, while presenting a person in front of the media on Friday night, claimed that he was planning a conspiracy to cause violence, and claimed four farm leaders are being targeted. Giving more information on the plans, the person said that ten people, including two women, had been brought together to spread violence in the movement. He added that some of them will also be in police uniform.
The Sonipat, Haryana police on Saturday claimed that the man had lied about the plan to disrupt the farmers’ protests out of fear. "Yesterday, he alleged that he was tasked by one inspector Pradeep, SHO (Station House Officer) of Rai Police Station. Our preliminary investigation shows that there is no inspector named Pradeep in the district or at Rai Police Station," said Sonipat district police chief Jashandeep Singh Randhawa to NDTV.
During the meeting on Friday, 22 January, the farmer leaders told Union ministers about the threatening calls they were receiving. According to a The Indian Express report, these phone calls came to Dr Darshan Pal, President of Kirti Kisan Union, and Rakesh Tikait, spokesperson of Bharat Kisan Union.
In the same report, a member of All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee, Jagmohan Singh Patiala, stated, “Dr Pal said he had received threatening calls from a private number and the caller used abusive language. The caller threatened them to end the farmers' agitation as soon as possible or suffer dire consequences."
According to farmer leader Harpreet Singh, the meeting was on till half an hour before lunch. "When the minister came after lunch, he said in five minutes that we should consider the proposal of putting the laws on hold. Apart from this, the government cannot do anything. Saying this, the minister left the meeting," Singh said.
The government also proposed to put the laws on hold and find a solution to all aspects relating to the formation of the committee, which the farmers rejected as well. While the farmers are determined to demand abolition of all three laws, Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said the government will consider a proposal for the farmers.
Tomar further said, "This movement is for the farmers and the government wants to talk about the interest of the farmers. But the negotiations with the farmer unions are not coming to any conclusion, so it means that there is some force, which for their own interests, wants the farmer protests to continue.”
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