Government deputes police nodal officers to assess farmers’ situation in Ghaziabad and Gautam Budh Nagar

The Uttar Pradesh government has deputed senior police nodal officers in various districts, including Ghaziabad and Gautam Budh Nagar, for assessment of ground-level situation on various issues, including those being faced by protesting farmers.

UP’s additional chief secretary (home) Awanish Awasthi, in his directions, said that the officers will start work on December 28 and will submit a detailed report to the government by December 29.

According to official sources, the officers have been sent to assess the ground-level situation primarily of the farmers and to initiate a dialogue with them. The move comes ahead of the scheduled talks between the Centre and the protesting farmer leaders on December 29.

In this context, Anand Kumar, director general (prisons) has been sent to Gautam Budh Nagar while Amitabh Yash, inspector general UP (special task force), has been sent to Ghaziabad district where thousands of farmers are on protest at UP Gate since November 28 to demand the repeal of the three new farm laws. Renuka Mishra, additional director general is being sent to Hapur district.

“The nodal officers will represent the government and they will assess the ground-level situation and will also look into the various local issues related to farmers. They will also initiate dialogue with farmers and co-ordinate various activities,” said Praveen Kumar, inspector general (Meerut range).

According to the directions, the nodal officers with the help of local administration will focus on resolution of local issues of farmers while they will also direct district officials to initiate dialogue with farmer leaders of the district.

Official sources said that the nodal officers have also been tasked to find possibilities of the local farmers’ groups joining the ongoing protests. They will also open up dialogues with religious leaders and will also ensure that Covid protocols are enforced in wake of new variant of the virus.

“Basically, the nodal officers will collect the ground level intelligence, especially about the farmers’ protest and report to the government,” said an official source.

Meanwhile, the protesting farmers at UP Gate on Sunday resorted to beating of utensils and canisters to mark their protest while the Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the nation through his monthly radio programme ‘Mann Ki Baat.’

The farmers at UP Gate said the are firm in their demand of wanting a repeal of the three farm laws. They have continued block the Ghaziabad-Delhi carriageway of Delhi Meerut Expressway since December 3 and have intermittently blocked the carriageway on the other side too.

“It is the PM who taught us to beat utensils. He earlier urged people to beat utensils to drive away Corona and now we are doing it to drive away the new farm laws. Generally, this year, 2020, has not been good for the government as well as for the society in general.We expect that the new year will bring encouraging results for farmers,” said Rakesh Tikait, farmer leader and national spokesperson of the Bharatiya Kisan Union.

Sunday’s edition of the ‘Mann Ki Baat’ address was the last of the current year.

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