Protesters walking through the fields to reach the venue of the ‘kisan panchayat’ at Kaimla village in Karnal district of Haryana on Sunday. (Express photo by Jasbir Malhi)
After the major disruption at Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar’s scheduled programme at a Karnal village last week, clouds loom large over various places across Haryana where the BJP and JJP ministers will be hoisting the national flag on Republic Day.
Refusing to soften their stance, farmer unions have already announced that they would go ahead with their plan of entering New Delhi and holding a tractor-trolley parade on January 26. Similar protests and rallies are also being planned across various district headquarters of Haryana on the same day.
Opposition parties including the Congress and the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) too are expected to hold massive demonstrations across Haryana in protest against the three farm legislations and to express solidarity with the protesting farmers. INLD’s lone MLA Abhay Chautala Thursday announced that he would kickstart a tractor rally beginning Friday, which will conclude at Singhu border where thousands of farmers had been camping for the last over 50 days.
Various farmer unions have appealed not to allow the ruling alliance leaders, especially Khattar and Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Chautala, to hoist Tricolour on Republic Day.
As per the schedule released by the state government for January 26, Governor SN Arya will unfurl the flag in Panchkula, Khattar in Panipat and Dushyant in Ambala. Vidhan Sabha Speaker and BJP leader Gian Chand Gupta will unfurl the flag in Yamunanagar, Deputy Speaker Ranbir Gangwa in Mahendragarh (Narnaul), Education Minister Kanwar Pal in Gurgaon, Transport Minister Mool Chand Sharma in Rewari, Power Minister and independent MLA Ranjit Singh in Bhiwani, Agriculture Minister JP Dalal in Rohtak, Cooperation Minister Dr Banwari Lal in Nuh, Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Om Prakash Yadav in Jhajjar, Woman and Child Development Minister Kamlesh Dhanda in Fatehabad, Archaeology & Museums Minister and JJP MLA Anoop Dhanak in Sirsa and Sports & Youth Affairs minister Sandeep Singh in Palwal.
State police officers have been formulating detailed security plans so that all such events can be held without any disruption of law and order. However, there were inputs that farmers would attempt to scuttle the events and create disruption.
“The manner in which the unscrupulous elements created disruption in Karnal resulting in cancellation of the chief minister’s event, there are possibilities that similar such attempts may be made on Republic Day. But, elaborate arrangements are being made to avoid any confrontation and disruption of law and order,” a senior police officer said.
After the meeting between Khattar and Union Home Minister Amit Shah in New Delhi, BJP leaders have said that they have been asked to “go slow” and “do not hold such public events” in order to avoid any confrontation with agitated farmers.
Since the farmer unions have remained firm on their stance, the government is wary of holding any such public events at least in the coming few days. Haryana BKU’s chief Gurnam Singh Chaduni had been issuing video messages on various social media platforms asking farmers across state and their supporters not to allow any BJP or JJP leader to hold any public function till the three farm legislations are repealed.