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Punjab farmers start 3-day ‘rail roko’ protest against farm bills

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The protest against the controversial farm bills that the Centre got cleared from the Parliament amid Opposition’s criticism has started to intensify. Notably, farmers in Punjab on Thursday started their three-day ‘rail roko’ agitation to protest against the farm bills.

Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee has given the call for ‘rail roko’ agitation. Following the call, different farmers’ outfits also extended their support.

Activists of Bhartiya Kisan Union (Ekta Ugrahan) squatted on rail tracks in Barnala and Sangrur on Thursday morning.

Farmers under the banner of Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee have decided to squat on rail tracks near Devidaspur village in Amritsar and Basti Tanka wala in Ferozepur.

The representatives of the committee said they were getting support from several sections including government employees and labourers.

Farmer organisation asks politicians to stay away

Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee president Satnam Singh Pannu said that they have appealed to representatives of political parties, ministers, MPs and MLAs not to take part in the farmers’ agitation.

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They vowed to gherao BJP leaders and socially boycott those who voted in favour of the farm bills.

Trains suspended due to the protest

Following the agitation in which a large number of farmers are participating, the Ferozepur railway division has suspended the operations of special trains under its jurisdiction. The suspension of special trains has been declared till September 26.

Railway officials informed that 14 pairs of special trains have been suspended till September 26. They said the decision to suspend operations of special train was taken in a bid to ensure safety of railway property as well as passengers.

Among the trains which will remain suspended are Golden Temple Mail (Amritsar-Mumbai Central), Jan Shatabdi Express (Haridwar-Amritsar), New Delhi-Jammu Tawi, Karambhoomi (Amritsar-New Jalpaiguri), Sachkhand Express (Nanded-Amritsar) and Shaheed Express (Amritsar-Jaynagar), officials said.

At present, routine passenger train service remains suspended because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Call for ‘Punjab bandh’ on Sep 25

Around 31 farmers’ outfits have given a call for the complete shutdown of Punjab on September 25 to protest against the bills.

Farmers in Punjab have expressed apprehension that the bills would pave way for dismantling the minimum support price system. They are also afraid the bills would leave them at the “mercy” of big corporates.

 

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