Farmers sit at the back of their tractor trolley as they continue to block a highway at the Delhi- Haryana border at the outskirts of New Delhi. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)
Farmers Protest LIVE News Updates: Representatives of the farmers protesting at the Delhi borders will hold talks with members of the Central government for the first time this year, where the latter hopes to prevail over the demand to repeal the new farm laws.
This comes after the sixth round of discussion on December 30 where both sides reached a consensus on two issues—the rise in power tariff and penalties for stubble burning. However, the meeting, which lasted for over five hours, failed to break the deadlock over the repeal of three agriculture legislations and a legal guarantee for minimum support price (MSP).
Ahead of their talks with the government, the farmer leaders reiterated their demands on Sunday. “Our demands remain the same. The farm laws must be repealed. The two amendments need to be rolled back and the government must listen. Our agitation will continue,” Jageer Singh Dalewal, a Bharat Kisan Union member said. They even threatened to shut malls and petrol pumps if the Monday’s talks with the Centre fail. The Agriculture Ministry officials too worked over the weekend to prepare for the next round of talks. An official said the government is “extremely concerned” and wants a “positive outcome”.
On Sunday, the Haryana police fired tear gas shells to stop a group of farmers, mostly from Rajasthan, from moving towards Delhi. Rajesh Kumar, Deputy Superintendent of Police, Bawal, said: “The protesters said those who had gone ahead did not have enough provisions. They asked for permission to go to them and set up a langar, and were allowed to do so. However, when they got there, the entire group tried to break through the barricades and move forward.”
Meanwhile, three deaths were reported at the Singhu and Tikri borders, where farmers have been camping for over a month now. Jagbir, 66, from Jind district, and Jashnpreet, 18, from Bathinda, died in Tikri, while, Shamsher, 44, from Sangrur was found dead inside a truck at Singhu protest site.
Live BlogFarmers Protest LIVE News Updates: 7th round of farmers-Centre talks today; Haryana police fire tear gas on peasants; Follow latest updates here.
Meanwhile, protesters from various farmer unions clashed in Sangrur with Moga police Sunday afternoon while agitating against the visit of Punjab BJP president Ashwani Sharma Sunday.
The BJP president had come to attend a party workers’ meeting at the residence of Sangrur district president Randip Deol. Kirti Kisan Union (KKU) protesters clashed with police who had put up a double barricading on the Sangrur-Patiala bypass ahead of Deol’s house.
SAD MP Harsimrat Kaur Badal too faced protests at Bhadra village of Budhlada constituency in Mansa district Sunday afternoon. The former Union minister had gone to visit a few villages of Mansa to condole the families of farmers who had died at Delhi borders. However, after her visitto the house of one Jagseer Singh, she faced protest from villagers bearing flags of BKU Ugrahan and BKU Dakaunda, asking her to go back.
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