‘There is nothing more this government can do now to break our agitation.’
‘It has used all the tactics and has failed.’
Three farmer leaders, whose organisations are affiliated to the Sanyukt Kisan Morcha, an umbrella farmers’ organisation with about 41 members, speak to Prasanna D Zore/Rediff.com about how they plan to bring traffic to a standstill between 12 noon and 3 pm on February 6.
“In this Digital India age, shouldn’t the government allow free flow of information using the Internet and social media so that there is no inconvenience? Let our voices also reach the nation,” says Abhimanyu Kohar, national spokesperson, of the Rashtriya Kisan Mahasangh, about how the government is stifling voices of farmers by shutting down the Internet connection across the various borders where farmers are agitating at Singhu border in Delhi.
“The government is killing democracy by using such brutal measures,” says Rakesh Bains, spokesperson of the Bharatiya Kisan Union (Chadhuni) Haryana, in response to the strong-arm tactics adopted by the government to derail the agitation from the Kundli border in Haryana.
“The entire stretch at the Singhu border has been converted into a huge camp, a small township so to say, and the citizens of this township live and sleep inside trolleys and tractors,” says Dr Darshan Pal of the Krantikari Kisan Union, describing the scene at the Singhu border.
“There is such a massive crowd here that there is no way the cops can enter inside to arrest me,” says this MD in anaesthesia when asked about the FIR against him related to the violence in Delhi on January 26 during the tractor parade and why he, as per his own admission, doesn’t venture out from Singhu where he is entrenched “deep inside this township, among the farmers of India.”
Abhimanyu Kohar: ‘The biggest obstacle right now is the Internet disconnection’
The chakka jam will be organised across thousands of villages and towns in Haryana and will be done in a peaceful manner.
The government has, until now, taken no special measures to derail the chakka jam. The biggest obstacle right now is the Internet disconnection since January 26.
Since that day we, the farmers, have not been able to disseminate our views, our side, our programmes to our followers in smaller villages and towns.
We have not been able to properly convey our guidelines to our followers, the rules and regulations they have to follow. Without the Internet we are unable to do this smoothly.
In this Digital India age, shouldn’t the government allow free flow of information using the Internet and social media so that there is no inconvenience? Let our voices also reach the nation.
In earlier times, the government would disconnect the Internet to prevent the spread of rumours. Today, the government has purposely disconnected the farmers from their supporters so that the nation doesn’t know how brutally the government is suppressing our agitation and democratic voices.
First, they had shutdown the Internet across 17 Haryana districts, now they have shut down the Internet only in four districts of Sonipat, Palwal, Jhajjhar, and Rohtak, abutting Delhi.
Rakesh Bains: ‘Chakka jam organised to draw attention of common Indians to farmers plight’
The entire state will be shut down between noon and 3 pm. The Sanyukt Kisan Morcha has given a call for a peaceful chakka jam in Haryana.
No vehicles will be allowed to ply on major toll roads where farmers are already agitating for their demand for the repeal of the three farm laws and MSP guarantee. There will be no restrictions on the movement of ambulances, emergency services and vehicles of the armed forces.
There is no question of incidents like the one that happened in Delhi on January 26 because the chakka jam will be carried out at several places without a mass of people coming together at a meeting point.
Farmers and others who support our demands will be agitating peacefully on the streets wherever they are in India.
We are sitting on dharna at the Kundli border which is the first village in Haryana when you enter from Delhi. Singhu is the first village in Delhi when you cross into Delhi from Haryana. Agitating farmers have lined up on this stretch for about 13-14 km.
The Delhi police have created a siege kind of situation at the Singhu border, but where we are in Haryana at Kundli there is not much police presence.
Just so that farmers don’t get to move freely, the police have dug up roads, erected barricades for several metres, and laid barbed wires, which are banned.
The government is killing democracy by using such brutal measures.
The government has turned a deaf ear towards its own farmers by refusing to solve an issue for which farmers have been agitating for more than 70 days now. This is government terrorism.
The entire state will be in the streets in Haryana; there will be countless people. There will be farmers from the Khap panchayats as well as those who work in the farms.
The three-hour chakka jam is organised to draw the attention of common Indians to the plight of farmers and expose how brutally this government is trying to suppress our voices.
Through such programmes we are repeatedly drawing the attention of the government to the unfinished agenda of repealing the three farm laws and create an atmosphere conducive for dialogue.
The government is talking about everything under the sun but repealing the three laws and allowing for a guaranteed MSP.
Dr Darshan Pal: ‘Not a single agitator will misbehave with any person’
I am at the Singhu border where there is no Internet, but despite all the hurdles that the government has tried to create, our chakka jam will be successful for three hours peacefully.
We will allow free movement of school buses, ambulances and vehicles of the armed forces. Not a single agitator will misbehave with any person in the street.
During these three hours we will be staying out in the streets, sing songs, give speeches. Nothing untoward like what happened on January 26 will happen because that was a huge gathering in which some government agents masqueraded as farmers and created problems.
There is a massive police presence at the Singhu border. Nails are laid on the roads everywhere; barbed wires have been erected at various places; huge barricades have been placed everywhere; they are playing mischief with our water supply too.
I don’t know the strength of the police around the Singhu border because I don’t venture out from where I am at Singhu; I know they will arrest me if I do that.
But the police can’t come where I am, deep inside this township, among the farmers of India. I have not gone underground; I am very much among my farmer brothers and sisters.
There is such a massive crowd here that there is no way the cops can enter inside to arrest me.
I will definitely come out if the government calls us for talks. None of the Sanyukt Kisan Morcha leadership comes out of these townships these days; we want to show our solidarity to our brothers and sisters by being with them here at ground zero.
We will be convening a meeting on Sunday, February 7 ,to discuss our next course of action.
New people are joining in everyday from Haryana, UP, MP, Punjab, Jharkhand and Rajasthan. There is nothing more this government can do now to break our agitation. It has used all the tactics and has failed.
The entire stretch at the Singhu border has been converted into a huge camp, a small township so to say.
The citizens of this township live and sleep inside trolleys and tractors. Tractors and trolleys have become our homes. We live, bathe, cook food and sleep inside these makeshift homes. The entire stretch here has been converted into a big township.
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