Police uses tear gas, water cannons to disperse agitating farmers in Sirsa

“Chautala must resign as Dy. Chief Minister and come out of alliance”

The police resorted to use of tear gas and water canon on Tuesday to disperse the agitating farmers in Haryana’s Sirsa, as they marched to ‘gherao’ the residence of Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Chautala, against the Centre’s agriculture sector laws.

Several farmers outfits under the banner of the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee held a protest rally in Sirsa after which a group of farmers had ‘marched’ towards Mr. Chautala’s residence even as various routes leading to it were sealed by the police.

“There was no clash with farmers. We had to use water cannons and tear gas, after the agitators broke the first of the two-layer barricades that were erected on roads leading to the Dy. CM’s house. They were about to break the second layer, following which we were compelled to use water and tear gas,” Bhupender Singh, SP, Sirsa, told The Hindu.

“The protesters even pelted stones. The situation was soon brought under control. In the entire incident there were no injuries either to any police personnel or the protesters,” he said.

Agitated farmers raised slogans against the Centre and the State government, terming the laws “anti-farmers’’, and demanded Mr. Chautala to withdraw from the coalition with the BJP in the State government by resigning from his post. Mr. Chautala of the Jannayak Janta Party (JJP) has defended the laws as “pro-farmers”.

“Our protest was aimed at pressuring Dushyant Chautala to stand with farmers against the laws and quit from his post. The police tried to stop the farmers a few meters away from his residence. The police had heavily barricaded the roads leading to his house. They lobbed tear gas shells, used water cannon when the farmers tried to go past the barricades to lay siege to the residence of Mr. Chautala,” said Phool Singh Sheokand, president, Haryana Kisan Sabha.

Inderjit Singh, a farmer leader associated with the AIKSCC, said the resistance of the farmers will continue the agitation jointly with other sections till the three-anti people legislations are annulled.

“Either Dushyant Chautala should not claim the legacy of his great-grandfather former Deputy Prime Minister Devi Lal or he should quit from his post,” said Mr. Singh.

“We reiterate our resolve to continue with the agitation unrelenting, which includes a boycott of all public representatives who still favour the draconian laws. We will observe October 14 as the Minimum Support Price (MSP) rights day and march to Delhi on November 26 and 27.”

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