New Delhi (News Desk): Thousands of farmers have entered the capital New Delhi for a planned protest against new farm laws hours after the police fired several rounds of tear gas and used water cannon to stop the Dilli Chalo (Go to Delhi) march.
Protesting Indian farmers scuffled with police earlier on Friday during the march to the capital, against new laws, which will make it easier for farmers to sell their produce directly to private buyers and enter into a contract with private companies.
“More than 50,000 farmers will be standing at the Delhi border by today evening,” two farmers’ bodies claimed. Close to midnight, water cannons started up at Haryana’s Sonipat to disperse a small group of Punjab farmers.
Former Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda on Friday appealed to the people of the state to extend all possible help like food and accommodation to farmers marching towards the national capital as part of a ”Delhi Chalo” march against the Centre’s new farm laws.
Carrying flags and shouting slogans, thousands of farmers have gathered at various entry points into the national capital in a determined bid to push their way through while police blocked them with barricades, teargas shells and batons.
National coordinator of Kisan Congress Rakesh Kumar Singh on Friday accused BJP-ruled states of using repressive measures against farmers and warned that attempts to quell their protests will only further intensify them.
Referring to Thursday’s incident in Haryana where farmers marching to Delhi had to face water cannons and teargas shells, Mr Singh said coercive methods to silence farmers would only worsen the situation.