Farmers put Dilli Chalo march on hold for two days after death of protester

"The government should note that this march will not fizzle out. It is trying to penetrate people in the march to create disturbances," said Sarwan Singh Pandher.
Patiala: Farmers look for cover after police fired tear gas at them during their 'Delhi Chalo' march, near the Punjab-Haryana Shambhu border, in Patiala district, Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2024.
Patiala: Farmers look for cover after police fired tear gas at them during their 'Delhi Chalo' march, near the Punjab-Haryana Shambhu border, in Patiala district, Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2024.Photo | PTI

Sitting along with farmers at the Shambhu border on Wednesday, Sarwan Singh Pandher, General Secretary of the Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee, said both forums -- SKM and Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee -- have decided that the Dilli Chalo march will be put on hold for the next two days.

"We will deliberate on the whole situation including what happened at the Khanauri border where a protester died and how we have to frame our policy and only then will the next course of action will be decided," he added.

Pandher said the decision will be announced by Friday evening. "The government should note that this march will not fizzle out. It is trying to penetrate people in the march to create disturbances. We have caught 4-5 government employees who tried to instigate our youth," he added.

Trade unions condemned the killing of the farmer and injuries to others, saying they would observe February 23 as a black day all over the country.

A 21-year-old farmer was killed while 25 others were injured after the Haryana police fired rubber bullets and lobbed tear gas shells on protesting farmers at the Shambhu and Khanauri borders. But the Haryana Police denied responsibility for the death.

The situation at both the Shambhu and Khanauri borders is tense but under control. The deceased farmer has been identified as Shubh Karan Singh of Baloke village in Bathinda district who succumbed to his injuries at Rajindra Hospital in Patiala. He was allegedly hit by a rubber bullet which entered his head from above his ear. While ten injured farmers were rushed to the hospital, others got first aid at the makeshift medical camp at Shambhu.

Meanwhile the Union government has said it was ready to hold the fifth round of talks with farmers.

"The government is ready for the fifth round of talks on all issues after the fourth round. The problem can be solved only through dialogue. And it is important to maintain peace”, Union Agriculture Minister Arjun Munda said in Hindi on X.

Patiala: Farmers look for cover after police fired tear gas at them during their 'Delhi Chalo' march, near the Punjab-Haryana Shambhu border, in Patiala district, Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2024.
Farmer killed as police deploy tear gas, fire rubber bullets to disperse protesters at Punjab-Haryana border

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