CHANDIGARH: Farmers in Haryana and Rajasthan blocked highways in Haryana and Rajasthan as part of a nation-wide protest against the death of five farmers at Mandsaur in Madhya Pradesh allegedly in police firing.
A group of 62 farmers’ unions had announced that it will block traffic for three hours on all national highways across the country on Friday.
In Haryana, major highways of the state, including National Highway 1 (Delhi to Amritsar), were blocked for around three hours by farmer associations and Opposition parties as they demanded loan waiver and other relief measures for farmers.
Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU) members assembled in Ambala and blocked NH-1 near Mohra by parking their tractors there. Haryana BKU president Gurnam Singh Charuni, however, asked the protestors not to resort to violence and give way to ambulances and fire brigades. The national highway from Rohtak to Panipat was also blocked at Ghollor village in Rohtak district.
Though the NH-1 protest remained peaceful, a few youths were detained in Narnaund town of Hisar due to a minor clash while blocking a road. Around 10 companies of police were deployed to handle the situation while traffic was diverted.
In Panipat, Indian National Lok Dal workers burnt the effigy of Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan. In Karnal, INLD workers led by former agriculture minister Jaswinder Sandhu took out a protest march towards the mini secretariat. In Kurukshetra Congress workers assembled at the mini secretariat for Kisan Panchayat.
In Rajasthan, cultivators blocked Ganganagar-Hanumangarh highway for three hours from 12 noon in support of the demands of wavier of all farming loans, profitable minimum selling price (MSP) for all crops among others. Former CPI (M) MLA Pawan Duggal claimed that a large number of farmers had taken part in the blockade. Police have also made necessary arrangements on the highway in the wake of protest. Apart from this, Kisan Mahapanchayat will hold demonstrations in villages in Rajasthan, national president of Mahapanchayat Rampal Jat said.
(With inputs from PTI)